Friday, April 26, 2013

"shor" became "chor" because British mispronounced the word.

The great Indian chor bazaar

King Cons | India has had its share of con men — from the notorious Thuggees to Harshad Mehta. Here's how TOI covered them.

In capturing the India story, The Times of India has, over the last 175 years, been just as diligent at recording the activities of crooks, criminals and the agencies set up to rein them in as it has been at documenting the lives of the great and the distinguished.

Four months after its launch, on March 16, 1839, the paper, then British-owned and called The Bombay Times and Journal of Commerce, carried a report on how the Thuggees, a secret cult which had then spread terror across India by strangling people, were finally getting the punishment they deserved: 13 of them had been given the death penalty, 70 sentenced to transportation for life, and 25 had been given life imprisonment. Thuggee gangs were known to work with military precision, infiltrating groups of merchants and travellers on long journeys, and killing and robbing them at night when they rested. In 1822, the then Governor General Lord William Bentinck appointed an officer in the Bengal Army, William Sleeman, to rid India of the secret cult.

Even after Thuggees had been almost stamped out by the 1840s, the paper warned that treating them on a par with other criminals, especially British ones, would be a grievous error. The paper drew a clear distinction between an English thief and a Thug, who killed people as a sacrifice to goddess Kali. The paper noted:

"The English thief knows that his conduct is criminal, both in the sight of heaven and his fellow men... But the Thug believes in his very heart, that murder is not sinful. He is commanded by divinity to rob and kill."

THE CID SAGA | We know of the CID today as one of the key arms of police investigation, but it was the action against the Thuggees that, in a way, led to its creation. The Thuggee and Dacoity Department, formed by Sleeman as a dedicated police force, was renamed the Central Criminal Intelligence Department (CID) in 1904. The TOI reported on May 14 that year that H A Stuart had been appointed its first director.

TOI continued its focus on crime post-Independence with comprehensive coverage of the 'Mundhra affair,' free India's first major scam. The scam broke in September 1957 with questions raised in Parliament about investments made by the state-owned Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) in a private firm in Kanpur owned by industrialist Haridas Mundhra. TOI reported in detail on the scam, tracking the proceedings of the Chagla Commission probing the matter and depositions before the panel, and it wrote of how the then finance minister T T Krishnamachari had to quit as a result. Its headline on Feb 14, 1958 — 'Mundhra deal was a dictated transaction: Chagla report on LIC investments' — laid bare the truth that the Mundhra shares had been bought to boost their price above market value.

An individual con man, though, soon put Mundhra in the shade and drew the attention of all of India. His name, Natwarlal, became a byword for cheating. A native of Bihar, he became known for forging the President's signature and selling the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort to gullible foreigners. TOI reported, over the years, his numerous arrests, his conviction in over 100 cases, and, in a review of his over-50-year-long crime career on July 1, 1991, called him "a Wodehousian criminal" who could "make crime sound like sheer sport or at least a shamelessly light-hearted way of earning one's livelihood."

Later, in 1992-93, TOI played a key role in exposing con man Harshad Mehta and his stock market scam. The paper reported Mehta's journey from the time he was photographed next to his Toyota Lexus, until his death in 2001, and through investigative stories revealed how he'd rigged prices and manipulated the markets. When Ketan Parekh followed in Mehta's footsteps 1999 to 2001, TOI in a telling headline described him as "Harshad Mehta minus the flourish" and reported how, before he was debarred from trading in Indian stock exchanges, he had accumulated assets in excess of Rs 3,000 crore.

From TOI archives (Jan 21 | 1958)

The series of transactions which ended in LIC investing Rs 1,38,85,750 in six Mundhra concerns were subjected to a close scrutiny when the one-man commission began its inquiry with a deposition by Mr Feroze Gandhi, MP.


TOI, on March 11, 2001, did a comparison of the two men accused of stock market manipulation since the 1990s: Harshad Mehta and Ketan Parekh. In that piece, the paper wrote of how Mehta, coming from a humble background, rose from being a nondescript insurance clerk in the 1980s to the most notorious player in the stock market. Parekh, a chartered accountant, on the other hand, came from a rich family of brokers and was related to many big brokers in the Bombay Stock Exchange. But while Parekh was publicity-shy, Mehta, at one time, had been publicity-savvy; later, as he was booked in many cases, he developed a 'cultivated' silence.

From TOI archives (March 11 | 2001)

Both are Big Bulls. Post-1992, Harshad Mehta became the ex-Big Bull. Mehta's every move was watched by the market. Now, his every move is watched by intelligence agencies. Parekh, also known as the Pentafour Bull or simply 'KP' is the current mover and shaker of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). Every broker wants to know what is on the 'K Index'.


On April 23, 2011, The Times of India's Crest edition, while doing a piece on Natwarlal's native village in Bihar's Siwan district, wrote of how the con man had duped people even in death. Natwarlal was last seen in 1996, at the New Delhi railway station as he was being taken from Kanpur to Delhi for treatment at AIIMS. He conned the accompanying policemen and disappeared into the crowd. He was 84 years old then. His lawyer, Nandlal Jaiswal, said Natwarlal died in 2009 at the age of 97. But the con man's younger brother G P Srivastava claimed to have cremated him in 1996. No one knows which story is true.



On March 8, 1851, the paper, comparing Thuggees with criminals in Britain, said: "The only methods to be employed [to get rid of the Thuggee menace] are imprisonment for life, or extermination to the last man, and in the spirit of charity and genuine wisdom, the government has adopted the former mode of repressing the frightful iniquity of Thuggism. Its votaries believe that whilst a single Thug remains at large, the worship of murder is only in abeyance for a season, but if a new generation grow up, whose fathers have never practised the dreadful trade, they will view it with the same abhorrence as the rest of mankind. If a similar result could be fairly counted upon in case of house-breakers at home, would not society willingly consent to feed and clothe them, if need be?"

William Sleeman, who wiped out the Thuggees.

mandeep (hyderabad)
charles shobraj and bunty chor should be there in the article..atleast charles shobhraj..
British Thugs Are Missing (...)
The editor has missed adding the biggest of the THUGS of times THE BRITISHERS who stole all precious jewelleries, diamonds etc from INDIA. Ofcourse they must enlist all the scams from 2G to Arms Deals to Parliamantarians....

ALSO Chor Bazaar (Mutton  Street) Mumbai

General Information About Chor Bazaar Mumbai:
  • Location: On Muttton Street, Mumbai 400003
  • Specialty: Haven for antique hunters
  • Best Time to Visit: Anytime of the year
  • Timings: Open Saturday to Thursday from 11am to 7pm
    How to Reach Chor Bazaar Mumbai:
    One can easily reach Chor Bazaar by boarding buses or trains, or by hiring autos or taxis from the city.Get off at Grant Road station (East) and from there its about 25 minutes away. Its between S V Patel and Maulana Shaukat Ali Road.

Mumbai's Chor Bazaar, which literally means "thieves market", has a fascinating history that spans more than 150 years. Apparently, it was originally called Shor Bazaar, meaning "noisy market", but "shor" became "chor" because of how the British mispronounced the word.


  Eventually stolen goods started finding their way into the market, resulting in it living up to its new name! These days it's famous for antique and vintage items.
To find Chor Bazaar, you'll need to venture right into the thick of Muslim Mumbai. It's located on Mutton Street, in the busy market area between S V Patel and Moulana Shaukat Ali Roads, near Mohammad Ali Road in south Mumbai. The closest local railway station is Grant Road.
View Larger Map

The area is full of crowded streets and crumbling buildings, and can be a little overwhelming. Don't be daunted though, it's quite safe but do be careful of pickpockets.
The shops in Chor Bazaar are open from 11 a.m. until 7.30 p.m., every day except Friday (which is Muslim prayer day). However, the area is still worth a visit on Friday when it comes alive with the Juma Market. This is the real thieves market. From sunrise on Friday morning, vendors cram the lanes selling all kinds of goods, many of them stolen. You'll have to get there early to get the best stuff though.
Prices at Chor Bazaar are very fluid and will depend on how good your bargaining skills are (or aren't!). The usual tips for bargaining at India's markets apply, and you should only aim to pay around half the price initially quoted for the goods. Shop keepers are very savvy and will quote ridiculously high prices to unsuspecting tourists.
One other thing to keep in mind is that the area is a conservative Muslim area, so do dress in loose clothing that covers your legs and shoulders.
 Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Chor Bazaar Bronze Statues
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Bronze statues like these can be found in many shops in Mutton Street, Mumbai.
Chor Bazaar Trash
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
117 Mutton Street, Mumbai.
Chor Bazaar Lamps
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Lamp shop at 121 Mutton Street, Mumbai
 Popular items include antique colonial-era lamps, kerosene hurricane lamps, crystal chandeliers, and glass lamps in an array of eye-catching colors.

Chor Bazaar Clocks
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Clock shop at 133 Mutton Street, Mumbai
 Serious clock collectors will be delighted with items including art deco clocks, grandfather clocks, and antique Smiths clocks (although not all of these are authentic).

Chor Bazaar Cameras & Vintage Miniatures
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Camera House & Miniature Shop, 137 Mutton Street, Mumbai.

Chor Bazaar Spare Parts
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
All different kinds of spare parts can be found in Chor Bazaar, Mumbai.
 Plenty of shops sell spare parts, including those for vehicles, machines, and even old phonographs/gramophones. 

Chor Bazaar Power Tools
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Parda Tools Center, 150 Mutton Street, Mumbai.

Chor Bazaar Hardware
Photo Tour of Shopping in Chor Bazaar Mumbai
Chittor Tools Center, 168 Mutton Street, Mumbai.

Chor Bazaar - Mumbai


 See this Escort. It was a full car when we entered the lane only to find it in this way after a few hours
The Automotive Chor Bazaar Of Mumbai  -All in a days work - An Eulogy-23072008573.jpg

The roof of the Escort and a carcass or another red car in the background
The Automotive Chor Bazaar Of Mumbai  -All in a days work - An Eulogy-23072008574.jpg

Saw this Contessa Classic in pretty good shape. Thought as to why would someone be crazy enough to bring this car in these congested lanes and then have the audacity to try and find a parking space here.
Yes this car was being driven in the lane.

Around five minutes later I saw several body parts missing on the car. Yes it had come to meet its doom. Its already missing the lights, bumpers, grille, hood, amongst other things.
The Automotive Chor Bazaar Of Mumbai  -All in a days work - An Eulogy-23072008575.jpg

15 minutes later this is what it looked like. R.I.P.-ped
The Automotive Chor Bazaar Of Mumbai  -All in a days work - An Eulogy-23072008576.jpg

Chor Bazar, Mumbai, India
 Chor Bazaar
 Chor Bazaar

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Friday Market at Chor Bazaar

If you're ever near the JJ Hospital on a Friday afternoon, head for the Juma Market at Chor Bazaar. On Friday, the regular shops at Chor Bazaar close their shutters. Instead, a vibrant street market appears in the narrow lanes, selling everything you can possibly dream of. As you wander under the awnings, with the backdrop of the mosque and the sound of prayer, you feel like you're in an Egyptian or Arabian souk.
I don't know what it is about markets that fascinates me. Perhaps it's the sound of vendors calling out their wares briskly. Or perhaps I just like to watch people as they wander around, idly examining goods, or bargaining in earnest.

This young boy was having a good day, sales were brisk at his little plastic store.

Pencils had to be bought by the dozen, but the prices were half that in regular shops. I wondered where the pencils came from. They said Natraj on them, but I don't think they were genuine.
The Friday Market usually has more men than women. But I spotted several women looking for bargains at footwear shops.
There was a big crowd of people - both men and women - scrambling to buy buttons and thread. Apparently pink is the new black. And blue buttons are hot. There were no takers for water-proof watches, although their water-proofness was beyond doubt!

Photographer’s delight @ Chor Bazaar

Photographer's delight @ Chor Bazaar

Home > Special Report > Big bargains at Friday Bazaar!

Big bargains at Friday Bazaar!

Friday, September 14, 2012
The Juma Market at Chor Bazaar has for years been a spot where people throng to get cheap buys for almost everything which exists on planet Earth. While we all know of its presence, not all of us have been fortunate enough to see it first-hand. Thus, we give you a gist of the scene, as explored by Sayed Roshan

IF you are ever near the JJ Hospital on a Friday, you could do worse than visit the Juma Market at Chor Bazaar located near Bhendi Bazar. On Friday, the regular shops at Chor Bazaar are closed, and a congested street market opens up, which sells stuff that is rarely to be seen in the city at the rates offered here. The icing on the cake is the environment, the sounds of Azaans from the mosques take you back to the Egyptian or the Arabian era.

The market, which starts at 4 am on Friday, has many shops and shopkeepers who start the preparations from Wednesday at 11 pm. The irony is that despite being horrendously overcrowded and nicknamed the ‘thieves market’, it is still one of the safest to visit and extremely well-organised.

The shopkeepers here are among Mumbai’s most trustworthy, but please expect to bargain furiously as they will always over-price their goods. If you’re serious about big-ticket buys, then ask to be shown to the back rooms, where some of the more expensive items are stored.


Chor Bazaar, Mumbai
Chor Bazaar -Mumbai








Chor Bazaar, Mumbai, India

Chor Bazaar, Mumbai, India-Chor Bazaar, located near Bhendi Bazaar


 Chor Bazaar, Mumbai, India

 old hindi film posters and etc