Land uses and stakeholders of land of Mumbai Suburb

Originally Mumbai was seven islands instead of a vast peninsula like nowadays. After reclamation the seven islands are connected. The reclaimed land was mainly used as rice fields in-between the islands. While the old town area and developed area was located at the lower-third of the island. The northern part of the city was undeveloped until the suburbanization in 1900s. The area  consisted of coconut plantation in Mahim area, rice fields in the middle part and marshes and salt pans in the eastern part.

Later on the farmers and Oart owners had become the greatest stakeholders and land owners that hindered the suburbanization of the area since they disagreed the development stance that shortage of living space justified the taking over of their lands, which they claimed the lives were “their ‘inheritances’ and integral to their survival”. And they also stated that “If (the scheme) implemented, they (the officers) would, ‘ deprive people of their ancient possessions and occupations and would send them into exile by thousands without any means of shelter or maintenance.'” Thus the cultivated land owners became the strongest opposing forces on the developing scheme proposed by the Bombay Improvement Trust.

 

redrawn from The Gazetteer of Bombay City and Island, Vol. II, p.137; courtesy: Prased Gogate
Thomas Dickinson’s land use map of Bombay island © redrawn from The Gazetteer of Bombay City and Island, Vol. II, p.137; courtesy: Prased Gogate
Land Records Office, Mumbai, and Jayant Ugra
Plan of land use in central Bombay showing salt batty and open ground applied for by Bapu Powar © 9 March 1821, Land Records Office, Mumbai, and Jayant Ugra
Source: BCR, DS, No. 19, Survey Report of the Fort, October 1810-December 1813, pp. 180-227
Landed Proprietors with Substantial Land Holdings in the Fort District © 1812-13  BCR, DS, No. 19, Survey Report of the Fort, October 1810-December 1813, pp. 180-227

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Dossal, M. (2010). Theatre of conflict, city of hope. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

 

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