Do you think you know your area well? If not, here is an opportunity to take a nocturnal tour of your neighbourhood and get a glimpse of another side of Mumbai’s nightlife. Called Night Outs, these tours are organised every Saturday by an organisation called Alternative Realities. They concentrate on the historical, geographical and infrastructural developments of the neighbourhoods.
All you have to do to participate is interact with one homeless person during the tour.
Bridge the gap
“The idea is to aid interaction between the homeless and those from other sections of society. We also want people to be more aware of their neighbourhoods in terms of their history, geography and the various developments taking place around them,” says Abhishek Bharadwaj, founder of Alternative Realities.
The tour begins at 10.30 pm every Saturday, as the traffic is less and Sunday is a holiday, making it convenient for the working crowd to participate. Each weekend, two consecutive areas are picked. “So one weekend we will visit Dadar and Mahim, the next, Bandra and Khar, on another day Nariman Point and VT, and so on.
But we encourage people to take tours of their own areas first, as they can connect with their neighbourhoods,” says Bharadwaj, who conducts the tour along with a homeless youth leader.
What’s in store
The duo begin by giving people a cultural orientation of the area and then go on to talk about the locality’s history, including facts about how it was formed, who its original inhabitants were and so on. The tours will also focus on current developments in the area and the impact they could have on the people living there, including the homeless. The night ends with a visit to an area inhabited by the homeless, where people interact with them. To participate in the Night Out, email email@example.com . Cost: R 250, includes snacks and transportation. This weekend, the Night Out visits Bandra and Mahim.