Redevelopment Saga

Posted by GROWTHSTUDIOZ

Redevelopment Saga

The absence of housing for urban poor is the root of the emergence of a place like Dharavi. If the State and industry, which have fuelled the growth of Mumbai, had planned adequately for low-cost housing for migrant workers, some of the present crisis that the city faces would have been averted.  Instead, the government’s policy has been incremental and ad hoc. When pushed to the wall, some schemes are put in place, implemented halfheartedly, and abandoned at the first obstacle. The problem with this approach is magnified today, given the sheer number of the urban poor. They are a...

Lanes of Gold

Posted by GROWTHSTUDIOZ

Lanes of Gold

Sakinabai Chawl is one of Dharavi’s oldest chawls, located off Dharavi Main Road, not far from Koliwada. Its narrow lanes are literally lined with gold—refined gold. Here, hidden from the outside world, is the home of gold refining, jewellery making and polishing.    Gold is kept in small earthenware pots which are then placed in a small opening above the fire. Once the gold melts, it is made into a nugget and weighed. It is sold according to its weight to the jewellers. The gold that is thus smelted is from old ornaments, sold to pay off debts, or to...

Recycling Mumbai

Posted by GROWTHSTUDIOZ

Recycling Mumbai

Recycling waste is a multimillion rupee business in Mumbai. Dharavi’s speciality is recycling plastic. According to the NSDF survey, Dharavi’s plastic recycling industry is the largest in India. It employs over 5,000 people and the turnover in 1986 was an estimated Rs 60 lakh a year. Today, it should be many times higher. Every day, more than 3,000 sacks of plastic leave this area.    The recycling and scrap area of Dharavi is concentrated in what is commonly known as 13th Compound, located on the corner where 60 Feet Road meets the Mahim-Sion link road. Across the road is the...

Snacks and Bakeries

Posted by SHAHID KHAN

Snacks and Bakeries

Dharavi has a big food business of manufacturing chiki, channa, chakli, papad, bread, bun and mysore pak. If you walk down Dharavi Cross Road, you will find on either side shops laden with goods which have been manufactured and packed in the homes and lanes just behind these shops.   Dharavi’s chiki-makers produce tons of the peanut brittle which is sold all over the city and outside. In addition to chiki and mithai, you will see many women rolling out papads. Some of them are supplying them to Lijjat papad. This is a women’s organization called Shri Mahila Griha Udyog...

Garment Industry

Posted by SHAHID KHAN

Garment Industry

Dharavi’s garments business, unlike the leather trade, seems to have remained immune to the ups and downs of the export trade because it caters mainly to the local market. You will find evidence of this in one of the lanes of Social Nagar where there are over a dozen shops on either side selling clothes and ready-mades.  This is your typical souk, your kapda bazaar that can be found anywhere in India. Daylight never reaches the lane separating the shops. All the shops have tubelights, fans, linoleum floors and some, have fancy shelves packed with shirts. There are few other...

Kumbhars’ Creations -Pottery

Posted by SHAHID KHAN

Kumbhars’ Creations -Pottery

The Kumbhars of Mumbai came from Saurashtra to Bombay in 1877 when their region was ravaged by drought and set up their kilns in an area in south Bombay. But as the city grew, and with it the needs of the elite who lived in the southern part of the city, the Kumbhars had to be pushed further north. So they were packed off to Sion, on the northern edge of the island city. But once again the land on which they set up shop was needed—for a British army camp.     So they were relocated, this time to...

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