Built together with nothing but natural transformations, Mumbai or ‘Bombay’ wasn’t always united as it is now. Modern Mumbai attracts millions of people to leave everything behind and never go back; it is the soul and sound of opportunities and ambitions. Nothing ever stops here, nothing ever begins. It’s a continuous path of dreams that never run out of exuberant hard work. Mumbai, as we know it, must have a confounding history that hasn’t only changed over time, it has matured the possibility of infinite chances and identity.
Most of you may not know this but Mumbai is derived from the name of a local Goddess called Mumbadevi.
Let’s go back in time and witness the grand history of Mumbai to understand the true meaning of it as it stands today….
Mumbai was group of seven islands, namely Colaba, Parel, Mahim, Mazagaon, Worli, Smaller Colaba, & Mumbadevi. They were a part of the kingdom of Ashoka, and after the death of the king, the ownership of these islands were passed on to many forthcoming rulers of that time. Despite of many constructions and changes of the islands, the city turned out to be a boost of economy during the American Civil War. ‘Bombay’, after many battles and difficulties, become the capital of the state of Maharashtra.
Among these islands, Colaba, Mazagaon and Mahim were larger and prominent as compared to the other islands. Trade and business activities were higher on the island of Mahim; roads, palaces, temples, law courts and trading ports were built here with great honour during the 13th century, being the capital place of Raja Bhimdeo, a Hindu ruler. These were the reasons that attracted international markets, some of them settled here after witnessing the prosperity of the islands.
So long after the Hindu rule, the Muslim’s took over the islands with an eye facing out front for any other threats and challenges which would ultimately lead them away from what they seek. The Portuguese were considered as a big bluff for the Muslims; as they were skilfully advance to establish the rule. Not only were the Portuguese, the Mughal also considered a big peril before the Muslims. The Portuguese joined hands with Muslims in their fight against Mughals. The Portuguese took over the islands according to the mutual treaty.
The Portuguese ruled Mumbai for about one hundred and twenty five years. After which the British took over Mumbai, in the year 1662.
The islands were inhabited by the natives of Mumbai, the Kolis. They were the fishermen and the traditional inhabitants of the islands. Today the Koli community is still intact in Mumbai spread over different locations called Koliwadas. The temple of Mumba Devi still exists in Mumbai and the area around the temple is popularly known as Mumba Devi area.
As we all know, the real development of Mumbai was initiated by the British, which began around 1857. The reason behind the developments made in Mumbai was that the British required a stronger platform for trade and other political activities, after Delhi they enhanced the physical elements in Mumbai. Thus began the era of development of Mumbai.