The soul of ‘Amchi Mumbai’ lives in chawls. Whatever it is, the Ganesh festival, SriKrishna Janmastami, Dandiya or Dussehara, the real mood of the festivals lies in the chawls. These chawls are the home of the city’s middle-classe people. One may find here a good mix of castes.
Now, the chawls are going to be as protected heritage of Mumbai. The list is under the process of approval by BMC.
Since 1860 and onwards, people started coming to work in Mumbai’s mills and industries and the chawls were built to provide low rent housing for the migrated workers by british firms.
The British firms have built chawls in Parel, Lalbaug and Girgaum and adjoining areas. The chawls were a series of rooms having common balconies and there were cooking facilities and tap water facilities available in each set of rooms.
Bathrooms and places to wash cooking vessels and clothes were common on the ground floor.
The buildings of most of the chawls were built well. There were also had ornamental gateways, decorative Minton tile flooring, and stained glass used in some chawls.