I’ve lived in Maharashtra for 16 years now, 12 out of those were in Bombay.
I am totally in love with Bombay & it’s people (probably because of it’s people). I still miss it, and them.
However I don’t know how I’ll feel there now after all that has recently happened.
Obviously my circles will not have the mns types, so I doubt if I’ll be directly affected, but after interacting with so-called educated people on the web, I can’t be too sure anymore. I’m sure there’ll be there rare educated, employed fanatic. These facts are for them & their ilk:
LIES: Bombay has a population problem & infrastructure overload due to migration from UP & Bihar.
FACT: The migrant problem that Bombay faces is not because of UP-ites & Biharis. Only 15% of the migrants are from those two states. That means that out of the 42 families that come into Bombay everyday, only 6.4 families come from UP-Bihar. The other 35.6 come from the rest of Maharashtra. Read here. Please read the whole article for insights that will open up your eyes.
Another reason for Bombay’s population explosion is the lower mortality & improved natality that marks an improving India.
LIES: Bombay always belonged to the Marathis.
FACT: Bombay was never solely theirs. Up until 1960, it used to be a separate state (this link also talks about the movement for a separate state like the demands for a separate Jharkhand, a Chattisgarh, an Uttaranchal etc. It suggests a dangerous separatist mindset, much like Shibu Soren’s or Jinnah’s, as is again obvious today). It only got downgraded to a state capital in 1960. And it didn’t stop being India’s financial hub in that year. Nor did it cease to be a part of India in that year. It may have been a landmark event for you, but for the rest of us nothing changed that year. Nothing should have at all actually.
Even at the peak of the Maratha rule, Bombay was not the capital. It wasn’t even significant to the Marathas.
So did it suddenly become desirable? Because of insecurity & greed? Wanting to live off someone else’s hard work?
LIES: Kolis are Marathis, therefore the earliest inhabitants of Bombay were Marathis, therefore Bombay belongs to Marathis.
FACT: I have yet to find any conclusive evidence about the origins of the Kolis. They’re currently found in Gujarat & Andhra Pradesh apart from Bombay and other coastal regions of Maharashtra. Some material on the net says they descended from the Chota Nagpur plateau region. Some totally unverifiable material suggests that they existed from the time and in the area of Mohen-jo-Daro. If any of these claims are true, it’s obvious that a) They weren’t from the region that is called Maharashtra; and b) They weren’t a Marathi speaking people at all!!! Even today the Kolis of Gujarat speak Gujarati & the Kolis of AP speak Telegu. It’s fairly obvious that they migrated and picked up the language of the region. Funnily, the current language of the region is only a 1300 year old language. If the Kolis came from Chota Nagpur, they couldn’t have been Marathi speakers. If they were here from ancient times, they couldn’t have been Marathi speakers. In either case, the Marathi argument fails to apply to the Kolis. The Kolis are also said to have been indigenous people to the 7 islands. Although implements found in Kandivili suggest inhabitation from the stone age. It’s anyone’s guess as to who the original inhabitants were. I guess the original inhabitant argument doesn’t hold much water.
Also, as the Brittanica link will tell you, the Mauryas were the first territorial masters of the Heptanesia. So will Wiki. And where were the Mauryas from? Patliputra? And what is Patliputra? Modern day Patna!!! So were the first rulers of the 7 islands Biharis? Well… that’s what history seems to suggest.
And of course we’re all aware of the dispute around the name.
So my question is this: Are we going forwards or backwards?
And award-winning journalist Amit Varma’s question is this.
And see what Prof. Hari Narke has to point out! Look at the pot calling the kettle black!
And in the midst of all this madness, is an example of a man who was a human being first, a doctor second, an Indian third. A doctor who continues to heal despite his untimely demise. Proof of the power of love over hate. Born Marathi but an Indian Hero to me. And others. Long Live Dr. Chandrakant Patil!