Yes. I am Mumbai!

When I used to grumble about the ever increasing population of Mumbai, my mother used to admonish me saying, “Mumbai ensures every mouth gets fed for as little as ten rupees (she was referring to the famous vada pav*). People who come here are those who go hungry back home.”

Twitter paid a tribute to what is called The Maximum City in early April. I understand from an article in The Huffington Post that Mumbaikars’ love and pride exploded on Twitter with the hashtag #MumbaiTaughtMe. Well, I am joining the bandwagon, albeit as a Late Latif, and this is my own version of an ode to Mumbai – in Mumbai’s own special language:) Yes, I am Aamchi Mumbai!

“Ho jayega.” It will be done.

I am game for almost any challenge and am known to deliver tasks entrusted to me. #MumbaiTaughtMe. And, I am a Mumbaikar.

“Tere baap ka kya jata hai?” Mind your business. Live and let live.

I am non-judgmental. I am liberal. I live and let live. #MumbaiTaughtMe. Yes. I am Mumbai.

“Khali pili rokneka nai. Khali pili tokneka nai.” Don’t simply stop anyone. Don’t simply come in the way.

I get out of people’s way. I allow people to be what they want to be. And do whatever they want to do. #MumbaiTaughtMe. I have found my way to who I am today because I am Mumbai.

“Mein zindagi ka saath nibhata chala gaya. Har fikar ko due mein udhatha chala gaya.”

I have walked hand-in-hand with life and fulfilled my pledge to live with every step. I have blown off all worries just like the smoke that dissipates from a cigarette. #MumbaiTaughtMe. I am now every inch a Mumbaikar.

And it’s because I am Mumbai that I can live up to Bandhe Mein Hai Dum. Vande Mataram! The chap has something to him. Mother, I salute thee!

Well. If not all the time. Sometimes. Is Mumbaikar mein hai dum. And, for that, I salute Mumbai, my mother. She taught me to keep the spirit alive.

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*vada pav – it’s essentially a potato patties sandwiched in a biscuit (pav meaning bread).


Khali Pili – extracted from the Bollywood song Tu Mere Agal Bagal Hai from the film Phata Poster Niklha Hero. The music director is Pritam and the singer, Mika Singh.

Mein zindagi ja saath nibhata chala gaya – line from a Bollywood film song in the film Hum Dono. The song is written by Sahir Ludhianvi and composed by Jaidev.

Bandhe Mein Tha Dum – extracted from a song from the Bollywood film Lage Raho Munnabhai. Composed by Shantanu Moitra and written by Swanand Kirkire and Vidhu Vinod Chopra.


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