Aerial photo 1940's of seven bungalow area
suhas katti's blog: A peek in to Seven Bungalows history !!!
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This is the last of Seven Bungalows
Crumbling Shanti Niwas
Shanti Niwas, owned by senior citizen Perin Irani (63), was built in 1898. The wall that was demolished last Wednesday was 100 years old. The BMC claims it tore down the wall, as it has to widen the road.
Irani, who was in Delhi on some urgent family business, complained the demolition was done in her absence and that the BMC process lacked transparency. I fear robbers and bootleggers will now have access to my house, Irani said from Delhi.
The wooden structure of her house has cracks everywhere. It may cave in anytime, fears tenant Ghulam Rajane, who has a 40-year-old bakery at the ground floor of the bungalow.
Irani, according to a close relative, has plans to sell the property as she has been unable to repair the structure due to a paucity of funds. Heritage site
Activist Mohan Krishnan, who has been advocating the preservation of the site as heritage, said that it is sad that rampant concretisation is eating up the citys landmarks.
Ratan Kunj, part of the Talati heritage and owned by Kuldeep Jain has changed with time but has retained some of its old qualities.
Kuldeep Jain, son of former Mumbai sheriff Shadilal Jain, said the house was haunted when they first moved in. There were leakages all over. We have renovated the building keeping its geographical significance in mind, he said.
Eleven affluent families sailed from Marine Drive to Versova island when Bombay was hit by a plague in September 1896. Seven settled at the island building seven bungalows in the area. Four families settled in the area now called Four Bungalows. Most of the 11 families were Parsis. The area till the 1980s was known as a den for smuggling and other nefarious activities. The concrete jungle Original owner: Homi Talati
Sold in: 1987
Whats there now: Two multi-storeys, Talati Terrace and Embassy Tower
Original owner: Ravi Jasra
Sold in: 1990s
Whats there now: New owners have renovated the original Vijaydeep.
Actors Yogita Bali, Kuldeep Kaur, Premnath and ganglord Yusuf Patel have lived there Original owner: Parsi widow Frennie Dastoor
Sold in: 1987
Whats there now: Three multi-storeyed buildings called Jewel Mahal
Original owner: Dadabhai Naoroji
Sold in: 1985
Whats there now: Seven-storeyed Sea Pearl
Naoroji breathed his last here
Original owner: Natwar Parekh
Renovated: Built in 1857, the Parekhs worked on the original structure of the bungalow in 1980s to make it inhabitable
Original owner: Gwalior House was owned by an unknown businessman
Sold in: 1980s
Whats there now: Seven-storeyed Marin Vue
Blast from past
Shanti Niwas, when sold, will suffer the same fate as the other six bungalows a multi-storeyed building will be built on its premise.
Kuldeep Jain (73), who has lived in the area for 42 years, said the concretisation of the area started in the early 70s.
When we (our family) came here in 1963, the seven bungalows were the only houses here. One could see Andheri Station (Navrang Cinema) from here, he said.
Jain added famous names including freedom fighters like Dadabhai Naoroji and Bollywood yesteryear greats Yogita Bali, Premnath lived in the seven bungalows.
In fact, Naoroji breathed his last at his sea-facing bungalow which has now given way to a seven-storied building Sea Pearl.
The Last Bungalow of Seven Bungalows Survives
Here is some interesting trivia about Seven Bungalows.
During early British era, this area was a marshland. Nothing but seven bungalows stood here in the midst of mangroves and coconut palms, while the Arabian Sea lay adjacent. Most of these bungalows were owned by affluent Parsis; one even owned by Dadabhai Naoroji – Founder of the Indian National Congress. Dadabhai Naoroji breathed his last in his cottage in Seven Bungalows. It is disappointing to learn that Dadabhai Naoroji’s bungalow along with 5 other bungalows were sold to the land mafia, and high rise towers built in its place. In present times, Seven Bungalows is considered a plush Mumbai locality with sky-rocketed real estate prices.
But, while six out of seven bungalows made way for buildings, one still stands undeterred. Built in 1898, Shanti Niwas (the last remaining bungalow) belongs to an elderly lady. The ground level is let out, and has been running Nazneen bakery for over 40 years. Simple yet elegant architecture of Shanti Niwas clearly reflects the work of an era gone by.
Shanti Niwas stands opposite Nana-Nani Park, Seven Bungalows, Andheri West. (Again, if you plan on catching a glimpse, please avoid disturbing the residents of this property).
Bombay Photo Images[ Mumbai]: SEVEN BUNGALOWS -MUMBAI-VERSOVA AREA
Members of the first Indian National Congress, 1885
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