Mumbai Meri Jaan…..

September 14, 2009 at 12:20 PM 7 comments

                           Hi people…. I just reached Mumbai for a “Peoples Audit of SEZ IN Maharastra”, organized by TATA INSTITUTE OF SOCIAL SCIENCE, Mumbai.  It was an interesting one and a half days of journey from Mangalore, which started when we left Mangalore, yesterday afternoon 13/09/2009 at 12.50pm and reached today morning at 07.00pm in Mumbai. When me says “I” it means Fr.Vinod, Jayanth Tulasi and obviously me – Gatty.

                         This visit is very special to me as it is my 10th year since I visited Mumbai last-time in 1999.

                            I guess this is “my” first representation of a Civic-conscience body of “Citizens Forum of Mangalore” at National level meet on “Peoples Audit of SEZ IN Maharastra” and the key word for me to keep in mind is “responsibility” that is entrusted upon me by the “forum” while assigning me the task of being a “Observer” of Peoples Audit of SEZ IN Maharastra, which will be conducted on September 15,2009 at Div Village, Raigad. So as you have guessed it well have plenty of time for “SERIOUS REFLECTION OF THOUGHTS on SEZ” once the session begins tomorrow.

                             Today I would just like to say that the journey from Mangalore to Mumbai was pretty much a new experience, I made couple of new friends from different walks of life one, okay let me give you an introduction.

The Group

1)      Mr. Jayanth- He is a Civil-engineer by profession and involved in the construction business alongside his father and Uncle, yet he is one of the foremost people who is environment concerned. Jayanth is 25 year old, so don’t assume that he is very old man when I add the title “MR”.


2)      Fr. Vinod, he is a priest from “Capuchin” group of the Christian community, he is native of Karkala and he is 39 yrs of age (with reference to his train ticket). Seems to me like Fr. Vinod is a man with a mission of doing something good to the community which he hails and adores so much.


3)      Tulasi, she is a student of Mangala nursing in Mangalore, she has almost a patriot when it comes to supporting a green revolutionary cause.


The Journey

                             So as you can see people from different walks of like, as for me, I am a student of Masters of Mass communication and Media studies, St. Aloysius College, who just finished his assignment on “SPIRAL THEORY OF SILENCE” and “RILEY AND RILEY” for Rev.Fr. Dr Richard Rego SJ’s, class (wow man… his titles are longer than his name!!! What say), and rush to catch his train in Mangalore central at 13.00pm.

                           As I was saying it much pretty much a silent journey all through out, with some bits and pieces of information from Fr.Vinod on green movement and the plight of farmers in the MSEZ(Mangalore Special Economic Zone) occupied permude, Mangalore.

Beauty of the country side

                          The doorway of the train-bogie was always occupied by some or the other, “even mera number aaya” and I made the best of it. It seems that the Indian railway passes only through the stretch of the countryside filled with deep green surroundings which we rarely get to witness otherwise.

                          As we traveled through the rough green fields out of the several sightings and sounds among them were.

1)      Passing through Karwar – I saw a small kid (approx 2 year old )playing with some pebbles all by himself in almost the middle of a huge ground, as big as Nehru maidan of Mangalore (for those of you who do not know what is Nehru maidan ? ….  visit Mangalore).

2)      A guy who looked very poor man shabbily dressed was eating cashews as though it were rice … I made a wild guess of which “world” the train was passing through, and guessed it right, the train was passing through “the State of Goa”. 

The Passengers

                         While the other entire passengers in the train including me were putting up best of behavior as through we were sitting for an interview or something….. A tiny-tot of 8 months (who was just sitting in our front row) through her playful-act was having fun in every possible way. She was lost in her own world playing with her toy-dog “Pluto” and one more thing or a toy or a doll, which must have had happened to be in her hand at a very bad mood, because the hands were missing, head was inverted, face was coloured with lipstick, almost bald. Yet as of now the child was having its own gala-time.

Rich Beggar

                         It was almost impossible for me to have a coffee at 18.00pm; “intelligently me” carried only one note of 500 denominations and had no change. The Tea-vendors gave me a strange look at my offer to buy tea with 500 rupees note. I felt like a “Rich beggar” and I wouldn’t have minded buying tea for all the passengers as well for a single cup of tea. Thankfully one of the ticket collectors directed me to “Pantry Manger” to tender change. The Pantry manger with a suspicious glance asked “Is that is an original 500 note?” I swear even now I don’t know how to answer that question, I wondered for a while whether it was a code or something? I didn’t know or was the pantry manger just testing a patience of a guy who just wants only ONE SINGLE CUP OF TEA, I just gave a grin and left. After dinner at 20.00 we slept for the day.

Celebrity Welcome

                       Today morning as we came out of the Lokamanya Tilak railway station, Mumbai, I felt like a celebrity, (Sharukh Khan might have complained about it but I just loved the attention my presence created) no it was not for my autograph, but scores of paparazzi of Taxi driver and autowallas blocked our way and offered to give us a drop to our destination.

The Bargain Raja

                     Finally my fellows and I had a brain storm of how to reach out destination at least expense (bargain was not because we were short of money but we wanted to make the most of it) and the sacred task of bargaining was directed to Mr.Jayath, who successfully bargained and convinced an auto driver to get his fare down from Rs 160 to just 80 Rs.

The Land of Dreams

                    On the way to TISS, the auto-driver Zakir, chit- chatted on things like compulsion of helmet in Mumbai, the benefits of concrete chips and their replacements on main road etc.

                   It was a very early morning scene; Mumbai just seemed to be coming to life. Parents were escorting their children’s to school, some senior citizens walking with their highbred pets, a woman was nearly fighting with a push cart vegetable vendor while bargaining, Mumbai City workers were empting the waste bins, some high school boys were passing comments on the passerby’s at the bus stops and so on.

                  It was nice to finally experience the city of which I have heard so much grow like a small baby in the early morning hours of Monday; I still wonder why I couldn’t the camera of Danny Boyle capture the real life of this City.

                    We finally reached the TISS (Tata Institute of Social science) at Chembur around 8.00am (20 minutes drive from Station) and as we reached “the Mumbaian rain” welcomed us with a lovely drizzle.


                   Picture 002The TISS seems to be a huge campus with greenery almost everywhere; I do not know the total area it covers but the campus is huge. Our service apartment was three minute walk from the main entry. It was fabulous fully furnished apartment, air-conditioned, broadband enabled with a personal computing and all the basic amenities of home cum office with food provided by the mess. Wow now this is the kind of working environment I always expected.Picture 007



Fine guys that’s it for today…. I got to freshen up now and sleep for some time, the train travel was not sufficient for a good sleep (guess they must apply couple of more suspensions on the wheels), moreover tomorrow is the big day so I need to do some homework and prior setups.


Take Care… Chaos…and support “Mangalore Citizens Forum” to conserve Green Kudla………………..


Entry filed under: Uncategorized.


7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. madhu  |  September 14, 2009 at 2:55 PM

    hi gatti..gud 2 no u reechd safe n had a great jurny…enjoy do yo best ter n get bak soon….loads o work waitin fo u ere..

  • 2. wilma  |  September 14, 2009 at 7:50 PM

    dude…. so enjoying… great man…. you are really a hardworking guy.. U deserve a break…. all the best ok… and don forget to get gola ok…. take care… bye….

  • 3. deepa  |  September 14, 2009 at 11:11 PM

    hi gatty’s ….. hmmmm so having fun there….wht a room man so good…i always thought of having a hostel like this….anyways we r always proud of u dear…enjoy and come back soon …today where missing u very badly

  • 4. harry  |  September 15, 2009 at 9:35 AM

    dear dude,
    hope u r fine, v miss u, nt only us, our neighbouring departments too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 5. kimbo  |  September 15, 2009 at 10:13 AM

    hi ,ma frnd hw r u ?????????? u mus b njoying der ……….did u find the slippers i told u to find ……….bwtn that M.A keeeps staring at the empty class ……..hahahaha tc missinfg ya

  • 6. crystal  |  September 15, 2009 at 12:41 PM

    Hi Harsha, How are u? Sorry I wasn’t able to wish u b4 going. Miss u a lot. Guess ur having fun. Actually its boring here without you. Don’t forget to get sum goodies for us. Hav fun. Take care. Safe journey back home. Bye.

  • 7. Bill Bartmann  |  September 23, 2009 at 7:11 PM

    I don’t know If I said it already but …Hey good stuff…keep up the good work! 🙂 I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks,)

    A definite great read..


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