Category Archives: Boundaries

Crossing to Colaba

4 May, 2017
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Boundaries: The Island of Bombay (1838)

Even 30 years after the Island of Bombay was connected to Colaba by a causeway, Colaba was far from a fashionable locality.

Sanatoria and asylums, warehouses and store rooms, printing presses and cotton presses commanded the precincts of Lower, Middle and Upper Colaba.

A strong military presence in the locality meant that the options for an evening’s entertainment were limited to viewing H. M.’s 103rd Royal Bombay Fusiliers perform “The Artful Dodge” at the Colaba Theatre or attending a temperance meeting where the evil effects of the Canteen system were set forth.

**Lower Colaba, also called Small Colaba, was the area that comprised the Old Woman’s Island.

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Get Me to the Church on Time: Being a Practical Guide to Locating Bombay’s Milestones by an Enterprising Lady

25 April, 2017
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Inquiring minds should proceed to the Victoria and Albert Museum and Agri-Horticultural Gardens, beautifully laid out in Byculla, to spot this milestone. Formerly located near the Arthur Crawford Markets on the Esplanade, the milestone has been carefully relocated to the Museum for safekeeping.
Avail of H. D. Johnson’s Hansom Cab service at the Byculla Railway Station and direct the driver to Gamdevie, to that piece of ground bounded on the South by the House of Krishnarao Goregaonkar, on the North by the Railway Tracks and the West by the Public Road. Herein lies the second milestone marking ‘The Limits of the Town of Bombay’.
Explorers are encouraged to attend the public lecture on ‘REFORM’ at the Budhi-Varshak Society on Kalbadavie Road before proceeding to the southern end of the Road to locate the milestone marking ‘I Mile from St. Thomas’s Church’. Newly reformed, explorers will refrain from consuming intoxicating drinks at the Sunlight Restaurant & Bar, a nuisance in the locality.
Having journeyed through the native town on foot, explorers may hail a hack buggy and enjoy the sea breeze as they ride through Chowpatty to Tardeo Road to find the milestone ‘III Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’. The bungalows opposite the milestone have been lately occupied by two Parsee families, the Jessawallas and Adenwallas, whose ladies are well known for their beauty and daring.
Walk a short distance from Tardeo Road to Gowalla Tank to identify this milestone marking ‘3 Miles from the Cathedral’ a peculiar specimen with all the signs of being a later entrant– giant proportions, burnished in the sun and a number instead of a Roman numeral!
European explorers can stop and rest at the Byculla Club and native explorers can enjoy ICES! ICES!! ICES!!! at the Byculla Refreshment Rooms before making their way to Chinchpoogly to locate the milestone ‘IV Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’. The works of lighting Bombay by gas are proceeding very rapidly at Chinchpoogly, and pipes are being laid for the purpose along the main Parell Road, so that in a few months explorers will realize the long cherished hope of finding milestones IV and V at Parell Government Gate Road, by night.
The explorers may have the good fortune of receiving a carriage from His Excellency Sir Bartle Frere to proceed as a party to Dadur to spot three milestones in quick succession- ‘VI Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’ opposite Chitra & Co., photographers and general merchants lately developing motion picture technology; another ‘VI Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’ on Dadur Main Road and ‘VII Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’ outside Mr. Antonio Da Silva’s Anglo-Portuguese School.

Gentleman are requested to wear their Sola Hats and ladies their Straw Bonnets for the final leg of the excursion to Sion, the limits of the Island of Bombay, where the milestone ‘VIII Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’ is situated.
On achieving this milestone, the whole party is invited to celebrate with a pic-nic at Sion Fort.

Boundaries: Island of Bombay

Miss Bombaywalla begs to return her best thanks for the assistance she has received from Messrs. Aadil Desai, Vistasp Mehta, Dj Murty, Atul Gandhi, Bittu Ahmadullah & Miss Nergish Sunavala in locating the milestones and examining photographic impressions of the specimens. She also wishes to thank the PUBLIC at large for their timely assistance when she was knocked down by two youths furiously and negligently driving a two-wheeler on the wrong side of a public road.

** Mr. Forjett, Deputy Commissioner of Police, confirms that milestone ‘II Miles from St. Thomas’s Church’ has been destroyed by the chief leaders of the notorious Dhobee Tulao Thalimkhana gangs, who have extended their reign of terror northwards to the junction of Parell Road and Sandhurst Road.

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Oh Byculla!

3 March, 2014
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Boundaries: Byculla

Boundaries: Byculla Badani at his best.

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Old sport

22 November, 2013
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Boundaries: Royal Western India Turf Club (1886)

Boundaries: Royal Western India Turf Club (1886)


Horses owned by the Aga Khan dominated the racing scene in the city in the 19th c. Since his arrival in Bombay from Persia in 1848, the Aga Khan I resourcefully consolidated and legitimated his position as the head of the Ismaili community and emerged as the most prominent and probably wealthiest Persian in Bombay.

With a capital start, Hersh jumped off with the lead, closely followed by
Hersh Acharya and Camera…

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Buffalo soldier

11 November, 2013
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Boundaries: Tabela in Jogeshwari

Boundaries: Tabela, Jogeshwari

Buffalos and buffalo milk have been sidelined in the imagination and diets of Indians largely due to the overwhelming presence of the dairy cow.
Now buffalos are at the risk of being removed from the landscape of Greater Bombay. Several tabelas (stables) have been labelled unsanitary and made to relocate.

Hashim Badani captures a tabelawalla making a splash.

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