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On a walk with the world

The long-standing demand of residents to increase train services to bring respite from the crowds during peak hours has found little response. “The most pressing need, however, remains water supply,” said Harshad Joshi, a real estate broker at Mira Road.

mumbai Updated: Apr 28, 2010 01:37 IST
Sayli Udas Mankikar
Sayli Udas Mankikar
Hindustan Times

If you’ve never tasted the real flavours of old Mumbai, particularly Girgaum, and savoured its heritage, food, culture, this might be a good opportunity — free of cost.

On Sunday afternoon, a group of young researchers from PUKAR, an organisation that works on issues related to urban spaces, will lead a ‘Jane’s Walk’ in this south Mumbai precinct.

A Jane’s Walk is a thriving Canadian innovation inspired by Jane Jacobs, an urban thinker, to push citizens to understand their city and each other, by getting out and walking. There will be 450 neighbourhood walks in 65 cities around the world, including Dublin, Waterloo and London, simultaneously on Saturday and Sunday.

“The idea behind the walk is to get to know the urban history, culture and local lore of a place. Girgaum is a vibrant area with a rich history — for example, it’s been home to several of our freedom fighters. It has a great community feel and good food, all of which we will cover,” said Kapil Chavan, a co-ordinator at PUKAR, who will lead the walk.

Along the way, participants will learn about the neighbourhood dotted with chawls —multi-storied one-room tenements created for the working class — that have traditionally been populated by the Maharashtrian and Gujarati community, the rich history of Thakurdwar, and Khotachi Wadi village, which has been declared a heritage precinct.

The walk, Chavan said, will begin at a milestone near Metro cinema, which is the entry point to Girgaum, pass through the primary lanes of the area, and end at Khotachi Wadi.

For better insights into the area, the group, he said, will consult locals, including journalists, residents and urban researchers who have studied the social fabric of the area.

First Published: Apr 28, 2010 01:35 IST