Interiors: The Friends Union Joshi Club
381-A, Narottam Wadi, Kalbadevi Road.
Back in the 1970s, chances were that customers could end up becoming good friends with the proprietor of the Club.
If a customer lost weight after a month of eating at the Club and climbed onto the weighing scales stationed at the premises to prove it, the proprietor marked the month’s meals free!
This anecdote, narrated by Yogesh Purohit, son of the late Mr. Khimjibhai Purohit (pictured above), offers an interesting angle to understand the presence of weighing scales in eating houses in Bombay.
Clocks: Hallai Bhattia Mahajanwady
Kalbadevi Road, Kalbadevi.
When scholars title their articles “Why Bhatiyas are not ‘Banias’ and why this matters”, it is time to take inter-community differences more seriously.
Both the Bhatias and Banias are Hindu Vaishnav trading castes and each of them comprises of numerous jnatis or sub-castes.
In Bombay, in the mid 19th century, the most prominent Bhatia subcastes were the Kutchi Bhatias and the Halai Bhatias and the well known Bania subcastes were the Kapol Banias, the Nagar Banias and the Dasha Shrimali Banias.
The Hallai Bhattia Mahajanwady complex on Kalbadevi Road is a good example of the Halai Bhatias’ marking their presence in the city.
*All the different spellings of ‘Halai’ and ‘Bhatia’ coexist in this post, in keeping with the Blog’s policy of tolerance.