Ghatkopar was a quaint village in
1920s and 30s. It came under Borough Municipal Corporation. It
was not a part of Bombay. Bombays limits were upto Sion only and Ghatkopar came
under district Thane.
Like all small community centres,
Ghatkopar also had just one principal road connecting it to Bombay on the Southside and
Thane in the north i.e; Agra road. It was surrounded by creeks and hills.
There are two popularly known
theories for the name Ghatkopar :
- It derived its name from the fact that it was the
CORNER - Khopara in Marathi of Western Ghats -
- It derived its name from the fact that there were
many Ghats , Small Hills, small river near the Eastern
Express Highway where a lot of Salt
Pans were there near Ghatkopar , so when people use to direct the
Way to reach these places they use
to call it " GHAT -
KE - UPPER " i.e " Above that
It was inhabited mainly by two types
of people. Those who came from proper Bombay in need of good and healthy climatic
conditions of the sanatoriums and those rich Bhatias, Parsees, and very few Gujrati
Traders who owned large plots of land and bungalows here. Population was sparse and
everyone knew each other . It was a close knit family. The streets were named after some
of the renowned residents of the area like Navrojee lane named after Navrojee Sheth - a
Parsee, Cama lane comes from Lady Cama Bai, Khot lane from people who ploughed and looked
after farming activities of the place, Hingwala lane from a family that dealt in
The streets were without electric
lights, and were lit with petromax lights which was lit by a man coming in every evening
to light them up in every street. Roads were metal roads raised in the middle so that the
rain water could slope down into the gutters and did not accumulate on the roads. Roads
were sprinkled with water by the vans of municipality twice in the mornings and evenings.
Youngsters in their daily activities
used to take early morning walks and evening strolls upto and into the hills and going
upto Powai, Chandivali and Mulund eating berries on the way, which grew in the hills.
Youth of freedom fighting years
undertook picketing and joining in Rashtriya Seva Sangh activities.
Ghatkopars face has changed,
as the years went by, but instead of ageing it is getting younger and more vivacious .
Even in early 40s it was not such a
small place. It had schools with real good ambience, architecturally good constructions,
housing academic institutions , with good sincere teachers .
Parents were an orthodox lot
preserving & holding on to the traditions of their native places.