Busy Indians outsource love letters to Bangalore startup

BANGALORE — “From 54 rupees, one bicycle, one room & a kitchen and a lot of love, we started our journey.”

Ankit Anubhav pens the opening lines of a love letter on ivory Italian paper with his black gel pen. It is a special message from a husband to his wife on their 25th wedding anniversary.

“Now we have evolved so much and still the only thing that has stayed is your love.”

Anubhav conjures up line after line, sitting at a cluttered mangowood table in the corner of his drawing room. He writes letters to others on behalf of others. It is his job.

Ankit Anubhav, right, with partner Jashwanth Cheripally. (Photo by Ankit Anubhav)


He is nothing like the character Mahadev in the Bollywood film “Welcome to Sajjanpur” — seated at a wooden table under a tree with his cloth bag of stationery, writing letters and filling in forms for illiterate lovers, housewives, mothers, snake charmers, eunuchs contesting elections, and a childhood crush who is married to someone else.

Anubhav is a modern-day amanuensis.

Read the full piece published on the Nikkei Asian Review website on August 26 here.

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