In this fourty-sixth archive story by Kristian Bertel, we take a walk on the outskirts of Dharavi in the Mahim area of Mumbai in Maharahstra, India. Read the background story of this archive photo by the photographer.
As cities grew, so did the slums, welcoming more rural migrants and creating more urban poverty in India. Even though people keep on flowing from the countryside, the Indian government has persisted in not creating enough housing for everyone. However, things are getting better as proportionally speaking poverty has been waning over the past decade. The photo was taken near the Mahim Station Road in Mumbai, India.
As cities grew, so did the slums, welcoming more rural migrants and creating more urban poverty in India. Even though people keep on flowing from the countryside, the Indian government has persisted in not creating enough housing for everyone. However, things are getting better as proportionally speaking poverty has been waning over the past decade. The photo was taken near the Mahim Station Road in Mumbai, India.

Mahim Station Road in (Mumbai) India

The station is located near the Mahim Causeway, which is a vital link road connecting South Mumbai with its northern suburbs. The causeway links the neighborhoods of Mahim to the south with Bandra to the north. The Mahim Causeway was built between 1841 to 1846 to connect the island of Salsette with Mahim. The swampy area between the two islands made travel dangerous and thus a need for a causeway.

Mahim Causeway in India
The Mahim causeway forms the link between Swami Vivekanand Road and L.J.Road, being the stretch between Bandra masjid and Mahim church St. Michael's. It is not to be confused with the Bandra-Worli Sea Link, a major infrastructural project opened a couple of years ago which is designed to ease traffic across the causeway by building another bridge across the Mahim Bay. The name Mahim is derived from the ancient 'Mahimavati' meaning miraculous in Sanskrit. Other historical names for the area include Maijim, Mejambu and Mahikawati. Mahim was one of the seven islands that originally made up Mumbai. Mahim or Mahikawati as it was known, was the capital of Raja Bhimdev, who reigned over the region in the thirteenth century. He built a palace and a court of justice in Prabhadevi, as well as the first Babulnath temple. The Mahim area actually means 'Residencial of Koli', which means fishermen.

Neighboring Dharavi in India
Dharavi, often described as the largest slum in Asia, is a 427 acre triangular stretch of land in central Mumbai, housing more than 600,000 slum dwellers, the unofficial number can go near a million. It is a conglomeration of continuous settlements, separated by a small road or sometimes a wall, constructed hastily at times of conflict. Dharavi is literally sandwiched between the Western and Central suburban railway lines with Mahim and Bandra to its west, Mithi River to the north and Sion and Matunga to its east and south respectively. Mahim, Matunga and Sion railway stations mark its three corners. Dharavi has had settlements since the beginning of the eighteenth century, which comprised Kolis or the fisher folk, who lived at the edge of the creek that came in from the Arabian Sea. It is thought that the present day Dharavi also includes the land obtained by the accidental drying up of the creek that happened over a period of time. Dharavi's emergence is closely associated with the migratory patterns that had marked the city of Mumbai. The migrants who made Dharavi their home are the Maharashtrians from the Konkan coast, the Gujarati community, the Muslim tanners from Tamil Nadu and artisans from Uttar Pradesh. As their illegal settlements in South Mumbai grew, they were literally pushed by the authorities to the then the edge of the city, the present Dharavi. Post nineteenth century, as the population of Mumbai grew, the city started expanding into the hinterland and Dharavi became more and more to the center of Mumbai. Ironically, this heart shaped settlement now virtually is at the heart of Mumbai. An overview of Dharavi indicates declining standards in basic infrastructure such as sanitation and health care. But there is a silver lining as well, a thriving leather trade and garment industry exist here, air conditioned leather showrooms on the main road which display every conceivable designer label is indicative of this fact. Statistics tells that its industries account for an annual turnout of Rs 3000 crores. Now Dharavi is on the path of a makeover, the draft of the plan has been approved by the central government and it is only a matter of time before Dharavi emerges from its shady image to that of a modern township.
Dharavi is located twelve kilometre south-east of Juhu and is almost the same distance from Church Gate Station. Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is the nearest airport.

More archive stories

India is a land full of stories. On every street, on every corner and in the many places in India, life is rushing by you as a photographer with millions of stories to be told. In the archive story above, you hopefully had a readable insight in the story that was behind the photo of Mahim Station Road in Mumbai. On this website of Kristian Bertel | Photography you can find numerous travel pictures from the photographer. Stories and moments that tell the travel stories of how the photographer captured the specific scene that you see in the picture. The photographer's images have a story behind them, images that all are taken from around India throughout his photo journeys. The archive stories delve into Kristian's personal archive to reveal never-before-seen, including portraits and landscapes beautifully produced snapshots from various travel assignments. The archive is so-far organized into photo stories, this one included, each brought to life by narrative text and full-color photos. Together, these fascinating stories tell a story about the life in India. India, the motherland to many people around the world, a land of unforgetable travel moments. The archive takes viewers on a spectacular visual journey through some of the most stunning photographs to be found in the photographer's archive collection. The photographer culled the images to reflect the many variations on the universal theme of beauty and everyday life in India. By adding these back stories the photographer's work might immensely enhanced the understanding of the photographs.