Friday, December 24, 2010

BOMBAY STREET NAMES[OLD] --[2ND] FROM-- ATTAR STREET TO


Attar Street. (East of Parel Road, BHendi Bazaar.) 

So called from there having been shops of perfume sellers in the locality. 
The word is the Arabic itr, perfume.
From this is derived attar, a perfume. Hobson-Jobson quotes the analogous Via Latterini in Palermo, and the Atarin in Fez. 

Babula Tank Eoad. (From Jail Road East to Parel Road.) 

Babula Tank called after the babul or acacia arabica. 
(Campbell, III, 595.)
The tree in question is a thorny mimosa common in most parts of India except the Malabar Coast. (See Hobson Jobson.) The tank of this name formerly existed by this road,but a great portion of it was filled up in 1907. 
This is one of the many tree -derivations which are disputed. Mr. Karkaria maintains that the tank is called after a man named Babula who lived in the vicinity. (See also Babulnath.) 

Babulnath Koad. (From Chaupati to Chaupati Road.) 

Constructed by the P. W. D. for the City Improvement Trust and handed over to the Municipality on the 30th June 1901. Named after the Hindu Temple of Shiva called Babulnath which is on a hill close by. Mr. R. P. Karkaria states that " babul " 
in this connexion has nothing to do with the acacia arabica tree, but the temple is called Babulnath after * Babul ' the Hindu carpenter who first consecrated the ' ling ' of Shiva here. Babul nath is like many other names of deities in Bombay 
and else where eponymous of its consecrator Babul. This information about title name of the carpenter Babul was confirmed by way of inquiries on the spot from temple people. It is also, to be found in K. Raghunathji's " Hindu Temples of Bombay," 
No. 89, p. 38. 
Rao Bahadur P. B. Joshi states that the temple was named Babulnath because the
expenses of the consecration of the ling of Shiva were borne by a Somavanshi Kshatriya named Babalji Hirji Nath. It means God, and therefore the temple deity was 
called Babul Nath, or the god of Babul, by the Yajurvedi Brah
mans who consecrated it. 

Bakehouse Lane. (From Forbes Street to Rampart Row.) 
Named after a Government Bakery that existed here. 

Bala Mia's Gullee. {From Lady Jamsetji Road to Mogal Gully.) 
OLD STREET NAME IN MUMBAI
NEW STREET NAME
Apollo Pier Road
Chhatrapati Shivaji Marg
Aurther Road
Sane Guruji Marg
Apollo Street
Bombay Samachar Marg
Andheri Versova Road
Jaiprakash Marg
Azad Road
Veer M Manekar Marg
Andheri Kurla Road
Sir Mathuradas V Marg
Argyle (Part)
Sant Tukaram Marg
Bhatia Baug (V T)
Nagar Chowk
Ballard Road
Shoorjee Vallabhdas Marg
Bastian Road
Amrit Keshav Naik Marg
Bazar Gate Street
Perin Nariman Street
Bellasis Road
Jehangir Behram Road
Bombay Agra Road
Lal Bhadur Shastri Marg
Bruce Street
Homi Modi Street
Carnac Road
Lokmanya Tilak Marg
Cadell Road
Veer Savarkar Marg
Cruickshank Road
Mahapalika Marg
Carnegy Road
Nathibai Thackersey Road
Central Avenue Marg
Swami Dayanand Marg
Charni Road
Rammohan Roy Marg
Chakala Street
Sherif Devji Street
Churchgate Street
Veer Nariman Marg
Clark Road
Keshavrao Khadye Marg
Duncan Road
Maulana Azad Marg
Dougal Road
Narottam Morarji Marg
Delisle Roa
N M Joshi Marg
Dadar M Road (North)
Dadasaheb Falke Marg
Dhobi Talao
K Vasudeo B Fadke Choke
Dugall Road
Narottam Morarji Marg
Eliphistone Circle
Mahatma Gandhi Marg
Explanade Road
P D Mello Marg
Frere Road (Part)
Ganpatrao Kadam Marg
Fergusson Road
General Bhonsle Marg
Foreshore Road
Shahid Bhagat Singh Marg
Flora Fountain
Hutatma Chowk
Forbes Street
Dr V B Gandhi Marg
Foras Road
R S Nimbkar Marg
Fort Street
Walchand Hirachand Road
Girgaum Road
J Shankarseth Road
Ghodbunder Road
S Vivekanand Marg
Grant Road
M Shuakat Ali Road
Graham Road
J N Herdia Marg
Gowalia Tank Road
August Kranti Marg
Ghatkopar Mohul Road
R Chembulkar Marg
Homby Road
Dr Dadabhai Nawrojee Marg
Horby Road
Lala Lajpat Rai Marg
Huges Road
Nayaymurti L Patkar Marg
Harvey Road
Pandit Ramabai Marg
Haji Ali Chowk
Vatsala Bai Desai Chowk
Home Street
Charanjit Rai Marg
Hanes Street
Dr E Moses Marg
Harkness Street
Jamnadas Mehta Road
Jacob Circle
Gadge Maharaj Chowk
Juhu Lane
C D Barfiwala Marg
Kings Circle
Maheshwari Udyan
Lamington Road
Dr A Nair Road
Lohar Street
K M Sharma Road
Lohar Street
N C Kelkar Marg
Lady Jamshedji Road
Vithalbai Patel Marg
Linking Road
N Subhash Bose Marg
Marine Lines Street
Sir Dinshaw Mulla Marg
Medows Street
Nagindas Master Marg
Mayo Road
Bhaurao Patil Marg
Masjid Bunder Road
Yusuf Meherali Marg
Military Road
Jawaharlal Nehru Marg
Marine Drive
Netaji Subhash Marg
New Queens Road
Mama Permanand Marg
Napeansea Road
Jagmohandas Marg
Parsee Bazar Street
Syed Abdullah Brelvi Marg
Parel Groves Gate Road
Samaldas Gandhi Marg
Portuguese Road
Raosaheb S K Bole Marg
Peddar Road
Dr Deshmukh Road
Pali Danda Marg
Ambedkar Marg
Queens Road
Maharshi Karve Marg
Ridge Road
Bal Gangadhar Kher Marg
Rampat Road
Khushroo Dubash Marg
Sandhurst Road
S V Patel Marg
Sion Circle
M Laxmibai Chowk
Tardeo Road
Jawjee Dadaji Marg
Tulsi Pipe Road
Senapati Bapat Marg
Thakurdwar Road
Dr Jaykar Marg
Victoria Road
Sant Savtamali Road
Victoria Gardens
Jijamata Bhonsle Udyan
Warden Road
Bulabai Desai Road
Worli Road
Vir Savarkar Marg
Wittet Road & Fort Street
Walchand Hirachand Marg
Waudby Road
Hajarimal Somani Marg
Balaram Street. (From the junction of Falkland and Foras Roads to Grant Road.) Named after Rao Bahadur Ellappa Balaram (died 1914) whose residence was on this road. He was born in 1850 at Colaba, where his father had come to stay some ten years before. His grand father and his father were known to the British army at Poona, Bombay, Deesa and Karachi as suppliers of milk on a large scale. After his father's death Mr. Ellappa tried for some time to continue his ancestors' business ; but, after being initiated in the work of building contractors by Shet Nagu Sayaji, one of the well known contractors in the Telugu Community, he found that the business of milk supplying was not so lucrative. He therefore concentrated his whole energy on contractor's work and in the Bhandarwada reservoir work and fortification works at Colaba and Mahaluxmi his capacity came into evidence and he succeeded in establishing his reputation as a first class building contractor. (Times of India, September 1914.) Ballard Pier and Road. (From Mint Road and Frere Road Junction to a new road along seashore eastwards.) Called after General J. A. Ballard, R.E., who was the first Chairman of the Bombay Port Trust, holding the post from June 1873 to May 1876. General John Alex Ballard (1830-80) was in the old Bombay engineers. He saw service in the Crimean war and was at the siege of Sebastopol. He was also under Omar Pasha commanding a Turkish Brigade. He also served in the Indian Mutiny. He became Mint Master, Bombay, 
in 1861, and when the Port Trust was constituted in 1873, became         BALLARD ESTATE MUMBAI
its President. He died on 2nd April 1880 near the battlefield of Thermopylae. He was the son of a Calcutta merchant (c/. Buckland Diet. Indian Biog., p. 24). Also a longer notice by Sir A. J. Arbuthnot in Diet. Nat. Biog. (2nd edition). Vol. 
I., pp. 1005-6. Kinglake refers to Ballard's gallantry (Crimean War, Vol. I). There is a brass floor slab to his memory in the centre aisle of St. Thomas' Cathedral. 

The name Ballard is said to be derived from ball, a white streak, a word of Celtic origin. It was used, according to Wyclif, by the little boys who unwisely called to an irritable prophet " stey up ballard " or as the Authorised Version says 
" Go up, thou bald head." (2 Kings II. 23. quoted in Weekley's " The Romance of Names.") 

Bamanjee Street. {From Bora Bazaar Street to Raghunath Dadaji and Gunhow Streets.)

Formerly known as Nanabhoy Bomanji Street, this very old lane is named after Nanabhoy Bomonji Seth, a noted landlord among Parsis in the latter half of the eighteenth century. He belonged to the well-known Seth family of the Parsis, and Now- 
roji Hill, Mazagaon, was named after his uncle Nowrosji Rustomji Seth (1662-1732). The dates of Nanabhoy Bomonji are not known, but his signature occurs on various documents from 1748 — when he must have been at least 20 — to 1799. His 
younger brother, Muncherji Bomonji Seth, died 8th August, 1799, aged 87. 

BanAM (or Benham) Hall Lane. {From Girgaum Road to Girgaum Back Road.) 

There was originally in this oart, which consisted of cocoanut and plantain trees, a single garden-house named Wan or Ban Mahal, meaning " the house in the wood " — ban or wan (wood) and mahal (house). Hence the lane came to be called Ban Mahal Lane. Mr. Acworth, Municipal Commissioner, 1890-95, receiving letters addressed from this lane, while on leave at home Adhere he resided in a house called " Benham " at Malvern, suggested its change of name from " Ban Mahal " house to " Benham Hall Lane " from his Malvern residence and that was adopted. (Facts supplied by rao Bahadur P. B. Joshi who lives in this lane.) 

Banganga Road. (From Walkeshwar Road round the Tank.) * 

Named after the tank bearing this name which is so called because the god Ram feeling thirsty is said to hava caused water to spring here by striking an arrow into the ground. Ban, arrow, Ganga, sacred water, (c/. for the legend about the Tank 
and Temple K. Raghunathji's " Hindu Temples," M. 26, p. 3, 
4, etc.) 

Banian Road, (From Kika Street to Parel Road.) 

From Bania or Vania, a Hindu trading caste
who have houses there. (For the caste of Vanias, vide Bombay Gazetteer, Vol. IX, Part I. Hindus of Gujarat, pp. 69-81, etc.) 

Bank Street. (Elphinstone Circle to Custom House Road.) 

Named after the Bank of BombayThe Bank of Bombay
premises situated in this road. " In 1862, when the Elphinstone Circle scheme was brought forward the Bank took up land there and commenced the erection of the present building, which was completed, and to which the Bank was removed in 1866." (Bombay City Gazetteer, III p. 220.). 

Bapty Road. {From Grant Road to Parel Road.) 

Named after Mr. James Bapty, the former owner of a flour mill situated at the corner of the road at its junction with Falkland Road. Bapty owned a bakery which was formerly well known in Bombay for its bread and especially pastry. " Bapty's 
Cakes " were long famous. Pearse succeeded to his business. 

Bapu Hajam Street. {West of Parel Road, Bhendi Bazaar, near Pydhonie.) 

So named after the house of Bapu Hajam, a Konkani Mussulman, who was a prominent
member of the Hajam, or barber, trade, and also practised circumcision among his 
people. 
Hajam (Arabic) a barber : they act as surgeons also, and theirwomen as midwives and nurses. They are Sunnis.

BAPU Khote Street. (Kalbadevi Road to Ersakine Road.) 

 According to one informant it is named after a Mahomedan, Bapu Khote, who was a 
famous barber and a Hakim. Another explanation is that it is named after a Konkani Mahomedan Khote, landowner, called Bapu, to whom this land once belonged. Bapu, 
originally a Hindu name, has been adopted by Konkani Mahomedans. This street is 
locally known as Jambuli Mohola, i.e., Jambul colour street, because it is occu- 
pied by Mahomedan dyers and this jambul, or violet,
colour is conspicuous there among the dyed clothes exposed to dry. 

Barber Lane. (From Cawasji Patel Street to PitJia Street.) 

Mr. R. P. Karkaria in The Bombay Gazette, lib. October, 1907, expressed the view 
that this lane was so called, because barber had houses in the locality, just as 
Gola Lane is called after Golas  who resided there. 
It was proposed in 1907 to change the name to Barbican Lane, but the proposal was not adopted. In 1915, another change was proposed and the subsequent discussion in the Municipality and the Press was carried on with no small display of acerbity. To begin with the Municipal Commissioner (Mr. P.R. Cadell, CLE.) wrote : ' I have the honour to state that certain persons living near Barber Lane in the Fort, have asked that that name should be altered. Although it is possible that the lane was originally named after a Police Officer, named Barber, and was not so called
because of its use by persons working as barbers, the latter origin is by a 
natural process generally associated with the name. The lane itself has been 
greatly widened and improved by Municipal action, and although it is not generally desirable to change a name simply because some people are dissatisfied with it, 
yet in this case, as the highly respectable people who live in the houses abutting on the lane wish for a name more in consistence with its improved condition, I 
think that their wish may be gratified. I have the honour to propose therefore with the sanction of the * Corporation that it be called " Bakhtawar " Street. 
The word 1s Persian and Gujerati means fortunate and may be taken to convey the good fortune of the street in having such respectable people living near it and in 
having been brought so prominrntly to the notice of the Corporation." Mr. V. A. 
Dabholkar suggest6d the lane might be named Sukhia Street — after Dr. Sukhia, a 
member of the Corporation. Sir Jamsetji Jejeebhoy advocated changing " Barber " into " Barbour " ; and Sir Dinshah Wacha,who deprecated changing historical names, 
said members had humorously suggested different names ; but he did not know if the Corporation would relish his humour if he suggested that the street be called " 
Bhadbhad Street," in consideration of the fact that so many loquacious persons 
lived there. No alteration was as a fact made. 

From among many letters which subsequently appeared in The Times of India, two may be selected. Mr. R. D. Cooper wrote from 12th Lane, Khetwadi, that Barber Lane 
was really known as Hajam Mohola, being a rendezvous of barbers (Arabic,hajam). " I think," he said, the " Policeman Barber " is a mythical personage invented for
the purpose of the debate.The probability is that it derives its source from '
Barbary ' as some of the Barbary pirates had their dens in the street. They were rich with their ill-gotten gains and some of them must have purchased some properties. Mr. H. Sibbald (aged 70) writing from Santa Cruz, turned the policeman into a doctor. 
He wrote : — " I joined the Customs in 1864. In those days it was an eyesore to 
see a steamer in harbour. Once a month the  boats came with mails, otherwise 200 
to 300 sailing ships were in harbour. In those days there were two doctors for the
shipping named Bolt and Reynolds, the former lived in the lane and the latter at 
Colaba. About '66 Bolt left for England, and Barber took his house and place, Reynolds also went about that time, and Dr. McGregor took his place. In those days 
doctors engaged to a ship got Rs. 100  a tidy sum — and filled their 
pockets soon and left. I think the street name must have been given about that 
time by the Municipality, I am not certain, but this much I know that respectable people lived in that quarter and Dr. Barber was one of them." Mr. Karkaria 
remarks upon this theory : — " This doctor of 1866 could not possibly have given 
his name to the lane, for the name Barber Lane is at least a generation older. I
have come across it in the files of The Bombay Gazette for 1839." 

Bardan Street. {From DeSouza Street to Kazi Sayad Street.) 

Named after the Gujarati word Bardan, meaning gunny bags,which are sold on this 
road. Formerly it was called Essaji haniji Street (c/. Note on Samuel Road). 
Baroda Street. (From Carnac Siding Road to Frere Road.) 
Named after the city of Baroda. 

Barrack Street. {From Bazaar Gate Street to Mint Road.) 

Named after military Barracks situated there. They were formerly known as the King's Barracks (the king being George III), because the Royal Troops, as 
distinguished from the East India Company's, occupied them. Even now elderly 
Indians call this Kin Burakh Gully, King Barrack Lane. 

Barrow Road. {From Colaba Causeway to Merewether Road.) 

This road was constructed by the Bombay Port Trust and handed over to the 
Municipality in 1897. It is named after Mr. H. W. Barrow, for some time head reporter of The Times of India, and subsequently from 1870 to 1898, Municipal Secretary
Bastion Road. {From Murzban Road to Theatre Road : 
constructed by the City Improvement Trust, and handed over to 
the Municipality on 18th August, 1904.) 

Several roads in the locality, are named after the old fortifications,
e.g., Ravelin Street. There were 8 Bastions, called respectively : — Prince's, Royal, Old Mandvi, Marlborough,Stanhope, Church, Moors and Banian. (Bombay Gazetteer
Materials Vol. 26, part 2, p. 286, etc.). 

Battery Street. {From Apollo Pier to Lansdowne Road.) 

Named after the Saluting Battery which was situated on this road until it was 
transferred to Middle Ground. 

Bawankhani Lane. {A blind lane from Chaupati Road.) 

There may be an allusion to the residence of women of bad repute : bhairon in Marathi meaning women, usually prostitutes, devoted to service in a temple. 
Bavankhandi literally means a large chawl of bavan, fifty-two, Idians or rooms.
There is a similar and well-lmown place of the same name in Poona City, 
after which this lane is most probably called. 

Bazaar Gate Street. (From Bori Bunder to Elphinstone Circle.) 
f.21   'The Bazar Gate and Part of the Town of Bombay taken from the Esplanade'.
Named after one of the three Fort gates. It was situated at thE north end of the street, leading into the old Fort. This Gate had two smaller gates also, hence it was known to the natives as Tin Durwaza, or Three Gates. The gate was pulled down in 1862. 
Bazaar Gullee. (From Mahim Bazaar Road to Maliim Bazaar Cross Road.) 

Named because of a general market close by. 

Beach Road. (From Colaha Road westward.) 
It runs close to the foreshore. 
1826 VIEW OF COLABA 
Beef Lane. (From Parsi Bazaar Street Westward.) 

Sir Dinshah Wacha writes : "It was so called because beef was sold here for the town barracks soldiery. I am not sure whether the kine were also slaughtered here. This lane is just opposite the Military Stores Lane, adjoining Graham's ofiice to 
the north. 
                        VIEW FROM ESPLANADE TO COLABA IN DISTANCE 1850
At the east end of Military Stores Lane, you will notice the back part of 
the married men's barracks, and a little beyond are the old Town Barracks and it 
Is to be presumed that the military folk kept all military requirements near each other within easy distance. So the other military stores were all stored in that 
lane. The beef had to be supplied apart and could not be al- 
lowed to be in the same place as the other stores. The old Commissariat was also in Parsi Bazaar Street." 

Bell Lane. (From Esplanade Road to Medows Street.) 
So named after Messrs. Bell &AND ; Co., who had offices there. 

Bellasis Road. (From Parel Road to Bellasis Bridge inclusive.) 

An inscription on the Bridge reads as follows : — '' A.D. 1863. 
This Bellasis Road was made in 1793 A.D. by the poor driven 
from the City of Surat in that year of famine, out of funds raised 



BOMBAY PLACE-NAMES. 31 

by public subscription, and takes its name from Ma3or-G«n«ra| 
Bellasis under whose order it was constructed." 

".,]3ellasis Road, tbe great drive towards Scandal-point at 
'^le'dch. Candy, is in the recollection of many now living a small 
straggling, uneven, jolting pathway, got up by General Bellasis 
^ of the Artillery, to suit his convenience, as he lived in the proxi- 
mity of the famed Maha-Laxmi ; and from thence he was to be 
seen jogging in his native ghari drawn by a couple of oxen." 
(The MonthUj Miscellany of Western India, May, 1850.) There 
is a mural monument to Major-General John Bellasis and his 
wife in St. Thomas's Cathedral. On it he is described as com- 
manding officer of the forces and Colonel of the Regiment of 
Artillery on the Bombay establishment. Died, February 11, 
1808, aged 64. General orders by Government, Bombay Castle, 
16th Feb., 1808 : " It is with sincere concern that Government 
announce to th« Army the death of that very respectable oflB.cer, 
Major General John Bellasis, late Commanding Officer of the 
Forces, who departed this life, on Thursday, the 11th instant, 
suddenly, whilst he was in the meritorious discharge of his 
duties, presiding at the Military Board, thereby terminating a 
long course of zealous and faithful services." According to Mr. 
E. Weekley (" The Romance of Names," p. 142), Bellasis is a 
Norman name from bel assis — fairly situated. But the same 
writer in " Surnames " (p. 318) says there is a font-name Belle- 
Assez which is not uncommon in Middle English and would 
give the same result. A friend informs me that the motto of 
the family is Bel Assez, fair enough, and this is certainly a more 
complimentary derivation than bel-assis which might be inter- 
preted " well seated." 

Belvedere Road. {From Dockyard Road to Wari Bunder Road.) 

^ This must be called after a once famous bungalow on Bhan- 
darwada hill. It was from that house that Sterne's Eliza 
(Mrs. Draper) eloped with a naval ofiicer. 

Bhai Jiwanji's Lane. (A blind lane from Girgaum Road.) 

Named after the owner of the oart, Mr. Bhai Jiwanji, who was 
Managing Clerk of Messrs. Crawford, Solicitors. He was a great 
book collector and had a valuable library which was dispersed 
after his death in 1906. He was well-to-do and possessed several 
properties in Bombay. 



32 BOMBAY PLACE-NAMES. 

Bhajipala Street. {From Abdul Rehman Street to Memon- 
^. wada Road.) 

Bhajipala, or vegetables, are sold here. 

Bhandari Street. {From Falkland Road to Bhandarwaha 
Street.) 

This street, as well as BnANDARWADA,is called after the Bhan- 
daris, or toddy -drawers, that resided there. Some of them pos- 
sessed houses and were reckoned among the old residents. 
Others came to Bombay from Malvan, Vingurla and other 
places, and settled in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. 

" The Bhandaris whose name is derived by some from the 
Sanskrit mandharak (a distiller) and by others from bhandar (a 
treasury) constitute one of the oldest communities in Bombay 
Island and are sub-divided into five classes — Sinde, Gaud, More. 
Kirpal, and Kitte or Kitre — which neither dine together nor 
intermarry." (Bombay City Gazetteer, I. 231.) 

Bhandup Street. {From Musjid Siding Road to Coorla Street ; 
Constructed hy the Bombay Poit Trust, and handed over to 
the Municipality on 30th June, 1883.) 

Named after the village of Bhandup situated on the G. I. P. 
Railway in the Thana District. 

Bhangwadi or 2nd Kolbhat. {A blind lane from Kalbadevi 
Road). 

" In this oart," says Rao Bahadur P. B. Joshi, " there were 
formerly afforded good facilities for persons who were accus- 
tomed to drinking Bhang. Several shops were opened by Guja- 
rati Brahmans for the preparation and sale of this drink. Vari- 
ous kinds of Bhang were prepared, such as Bhang mixed with' 
milk and sugar, and Bhang mixed with pounded almonds, 
cardamoms, saffron, and other spices. The prices ranged from 
half an anna to two annas per tola, or a bowlful. On Hindu 
holidays and fast days such as the Mahashivaratra, Mondays of 
the month of Shravan, etc., there was a great demand for this 
Bhang by the devotees of Shiva. It is believed to be sacred to 
Shiva and therefore people partook of it on days sacred to that 
god. It was also poured by way of Abhishek (holy sprinkling) 
on the ling of Shiva." 



BOMBAY PLACE-NAMES. 33 

Bhang is the dried leaves and small stalks of hemp (i.e., 
Cannabis indica). The word is usually derived from Sanskrit,^ 
bhanga,, breaking, but Sir Richard Burton derives both it and the 
Arab Banj from the old Coptic Nibanj " meaning a preparation 
ot* hemp ; and there it is easy to recognise the Homeric Nepen- 
the." (Hobson-Jobson.) 

Bhasker Lane. {A blind lane from Cathedral Street.) 

Named after the father of Mr. Anandrao Bhasker, who was a 
Judge of the Small Cause Court, and who owned a large property 
here. Bhasker ji was a Prabhu by caste, and most of the houses 
around this locality and Bhuleshwar were owned by the Parbhus 
and the Yajurvedi Joshis till the middle of the nineteenth 
century. 

Bhaskar Bhau Lane. (Near Gamdevi.) 

This lane is called after Bhasker Bhau Mantri who possessed 
several houses in Gamdevi and other parts of Bombay. He 
belonged to the Somavanshi Pathare Community, and was a 
well known contractor in Bombay. 

Bhattia Bagh. (South of Victoria Terminus.) 

Sir Dinshah E. Wacha, otherwise " Sandy Seventy " in The 
Bombay Chronicle (April 9, 1915) says : — '"It was not till 1861, 
generally after 1864, that Malabar Hill began to be well popula- 
ted. The remaining population in the Fort, specially the north, 
was occupied by Parsi merchants and traders, the Kapole 
Banias, men of the rank and wealth of Mangaldas Nathoobhoy 
and Vurjivandas Madhowdas lived here and there in central 
town houses which still stand. Next were the wealthy Bhattias, 
who resided in Bazaar Gate Street and in Old Mody Street, lying 
parallel to the east, in the direction of Mody Bay. Goculdas 
Tejpal, Goculdas Liladhar Pasta, Khatao Makanji, Jivraj Baloo, 
Jairam Sewji and such occupied the Bazar Gate Street from the 
north end as far as the Parsi Agiary Street, south. In Holee 
Chukla also the population was Bhattia. This extended as far 
as Parsi Bazaar Street, near the end of Gola Lane. Generically 
it was known as ' Bhattia Wad.' The ' Bhattia Bag ' in Fort 
Street, now under renovation, was so called, because all along 
jts south side the Bhattia population greatly preponderated, when 
^he 'bag' so called was first built in the latter part of the sixties." 



34 BOMBAY PLACE-NAMES. 

( ( 

When the Municipality undertook to lay out the Bagh, 
*" which had grown untidy and unsightly, in an orderly fashion 
various suggestions were made for its re -naming and j:\ May, 
1917, it received the official designation Victoria S(^U4re. 
"The name," said The Times of India, " k obvious enough 
when one remembers that the Victoria Terminus is one of t^e 
boundaries of the area thus rechristened, but "square "<- is 
geometrically indefensible. " Place," which was originally 
suggested, would have done well if only we could acquire the 
habit of using it in the French sense which somehow does not 
fit in with the English pronunciation of the word. The 
Corporation cannot in any case be accused of coming to a 
decision without due consideration of the various names sug- 
gested. They have deliberately swept away the name of a 
quarter which is smaller in size than in historic interest, and, 
as our Calcutta correspondent pointed out in a letter which 
we published yesterday, it often happens that the name of a 
quarter or district is not attached to any street and is thus in 
danger of being obliterated. For many reasons that is to be 
regretted." 



Bhatwadi. (From Girgaum Road to Girgaum Bach Road.) 

There were formerly three Bhatwadis in Bombay. One of 
these has been now acquired by the City Improvement Trust 
(in 1911), and a new street is opened there. These three Bhat- 
wadis at one time formed one oart which was the property of one 
Bhat Vasudev Sankhedkar, a priest of the Somavanshi Pathares. 
It contained cocoanut, plantain, and guava trees. It was subse- 
quently divided into three parts after it had passed into different 
hands. Till the year 1884, the 2nd Bhatwadi was known as 
Ganesh Ramji's Wadi owing to the fact that most of the houses'^ 
there were owned by Ganesh Ramji, head surveyor to the Col- 
lector of Bombay. 

Bhantaz Gully. (Fro^n Portuguese Church, Chiniwadi.) 

Bhavnagar Street. (Behind Memonwada Street.) 

So called because the inhabitants are Memons from Bhavnagar 
in Kathiawar. The Memons in Bombay mostly come from 



BOMBAY PLACE-NAMES. 35 

> 3 

Cutch, Halar, Dholka in Ahmedabad Collectorate, Bhavnagar, 
Bhuj and Verawal in Kathiawad, and are accordingly called'^ 
CutCc]i3, Halai, Dholka, etc., Memons. (c/. Bhujvari Street), 

BjiENDY Bazaar. (See under Parel Road.) 

3HIMPARA Street. (In Mandvi Koliwada.) 

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Named after a Koli called Bhim, who was formerly headman 
of the Kolis there. The name Bhim originally belonged to a god 
of the Hindu Pantheon, who corresponds to the classical Hercules. 

In the guise of Bhim Raja, Bhimdev, or Raja Bimb it ap- 
pears as the name of the chief who ruled over Mahim in Bombay 
and Salsette subsequent to the epoch of Silahara rule (vide 
Bombay City Gazetteer.) 

Bhisti Street. (East of Bhendi Bazaar.) 

So called because Bhisti Mussulmans are the chief inhabitants. 
Bhistis are water carriers. The word is commonly derived from 
the Persian bihishti, a person of hihisht or paradise, but the 
compilers of Hobson-Jobson fail to trace its history. Dr. 
Jivanji Jamsetji Modi questions that derivation and thinks it 
comes from the Gujarati word for " to wet." 

Bhoget Gully. (From Gopi Tank Gully No. 2 to Sorab Mill 
Gully.) 

Owes its name to the fact that a well-known Bhagat or Deval 
rashi (exorcist) once resided in its vicinity. 

1st Bhoiwada Lane. (From Kika Street to Bhuleshwar Street.) 

Named after Bhois (palanqum bearers) who inhabited the 
place. " Boy, a palanquin-bearer. From the name of the 
caste, Tel. and Mai. boyi. Tam. bovi.'' (Hobson-Jobson.) 

The whole land of the First, Second and Third Bhoiwada is a 
Fazandari tenure. The original Fazandars of all these three 
Bhoiwadas were Balambhat Javle and other descendants of 
Gamba Naik Javle, and that Naik who were granted by Gover- 
nors Sir John Childe (1687 A.D.) and Richard Bourchier (1755 
A.D.) patents of rights as the chief hereditary priests and phy- 
sicians of Bombay. At present the Fazandars of the first and of 
the half of the 2nd Bhoiwada are the descendants of the said 



36 BOMBAY 'place-names. 

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Gamba Naik and Vitlial Naik Javle. The Fazandari rights 
^M)f half of the 2nd Bhoiwada, including the Bhuleshwar 
Market, and of the whole of the 3rd Bhoiwada are vested in 
Mr. Vinayakrao Sadanand Joshi, the present owner of ?ada- 
nand Joshi's oart and properties in Bombay. 

Bhujvari Street. (Memonwada.) 

The inhabitants are Memons from Bhuj in Cutch (cf. Bhav- 
nagar Street). 

Bhuleshwar Street. (From Kalbadevi Road to Girgaum.) 

" So called from the great temple and tank of Bhuleshwar." 
(Bombay City Gazetteer.) 

"Bholesvar is one of the epithets of Siva, Bhola meaning 
* simple ' hence he is called the Lord of the Simple. Others say 
that it was built by a rich Koli by name Bhola, who, having no 
progeny nor relatives of his own, spent his large fortune in the 
building of this temple, which bears his name. Another tradi- 
tion connects the temple with a Pardesi by name Bholanath, 
who built it whence the gcd is called by his name. Others say 
that the Pardesi was a mere porter of the temple." (Da 
Cunha, p. 61.) 

Rao Bahadur P.B. Joshi writes : — " The statement that Bho- 
leshwar is one of the epithets of Shiva is not accurate, because 
grammatically it would be wrong to form the compound Bho- 
leshwar from Bhola and Ishwar. Such compound would be 
considered a hybrid combination. The real origin of the name 
Bhuleshwar is from the name of the individual who built the 
temple and gave money for the consecration ceremony. Origi- 
nally the temple was built by a local Koli, or fisherman, who was . 
wealthy but had no progeny. His name was Bhula, or Bhulya, 
and so the God was called Bhuleshwar by the officiating priests 
who were the hereditary Yajurvedic Brahmans of Bombay. 
In Bombay, several other temples are similarly named after 
the person who built them." 
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 Bombay place-names and street-namesOn openlibrary.org

 
 

2 comments:

Gulamhusein Abba said...

Most interesting and informative. I was born in Bombay in 1928 1nd lived there till 1982 nad became familiar with every road, every gully.But even I did not know why some of the roads were named what they were. And,having left Bombay 1982 and never returned there, had no idea what the old familiar roads were renamed! And was beginning to forget some of the roads I had walked, bicycled on so many times and travelled on by our Studbake car and later by buses and trams and "ghoda gadis"!!

Thank you for this nostalgic piece.

archana jain said...

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