Mumbai diary: Tales of the city's growing mangrove cover and more

Mumbai’s mangrove cover has increased in the past two years, according to the Forest Survey of India. Mangrove cover in the suburban area of the city has increased from 48 sq km to 64 sq km between 20

Published: 15th February 2018 02:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 15th February 2018 06:20 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

Rise in mangrove cover

Mumbai’s mangrove cover has increased in the past two years, according to the Forest Survey of India. Mangrove cover in the suburban area of the city has increased from 48 sq km to 64 sq km between 2015 and 2017. The growth is very significant, as the mangroves around Mumbai have sustained all kinds of abuse and yet they are ecologically rich.

According to several studies over the past decade, these mangroves are only next to its ilk in Andaman and Nicobar Islands when it comes to bio-diversity in the ecosystem. The growth is also a reply to the outcry over the destruction of mangrove forests due to infrastructure projects like the airport and trans-harbour link.

The ‘Awarapan’

Sayeed Quadri’s journey from Jodhpur to Mumbai and the Indian film industry and his transition from an LIC agent to a respected poet is anything but easy. And to make his mark in a world that rarely understands the story behind a poet’s immortal verses is indeed a success. The story of this poet, philosopher and wordsmith who has given to the Indian music and film industry several hit numbers such as ‘Bheegae Hont Tere’, ‘In Dino’ and ‘Kaho Na Kaho’ was revealed at a modest function last week. The event was the release of his book of poems titled ‘Awarapan’. “My poems are an expression of my ‘Awargi’, or ‘Awarapan’,” the lyricist said.

Fest of true Goa
Mumbai, probably, houses the largest number of Goans outside Goa. ‘Aami Goyenkar’, an association involved in the conservation of the true Goan culture, held a two-day festival last week. Food, arts and crafts that are quintessentially Goan were the key attraction of the festival. The chefs that managed some 50 odd stalls at the fest used their talent and expertise to showcase the best of the Goan culinary delights. Konkani elocution contest, ‘Gajali’ (chatting) and ‘Udags’ (memory) related to Konkani literature presented a sumptuous food for thought to visitors.

City of the rich
Though Mumbai is known as the city that offers opportunities to the people for helping them rise from rags to riches, the city has - probably for the first time - joined the league of the topmost rich cities of the world. With an estimated total wealth of $950 billion, the New World Wealth report has declared India’s financial capital as the 12th richest city of the world. The city is home to 28 individuals with $1 billion or more in net assets, the report notes and adds that the city is expected to be the fastest growing city, in terms of wealth growth, over the next 10 years.

Changing landscape
Mumbai was once dotted with orchards, locally called ‘Vadi’. Places like the famous ‘Khotachi Vadi’ are the remnants of that era of the city.  With the advent of industrialisation, that Mumbai changed to a textile town dominated by mills and ‘Chawls’. In the 1990s, large tracts of mill land in central Mumbai were opened up for redevelopment. The redevelopment has changed the face of Mumbai. Now, the east coast of Mumbai too is up for redevelopment. With around 600-acre land up for redevelopment, the metropolis  expects that it will have much more planned open spaces that were promised but never delivered 20 years ago.

Abhijit Mulye

Our correspondent in Maharashtra

abhijit.mulye@gmail.com

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