Friday, June 20, 2008

Gorai beach

Gorai is a village in the North-western part of Mumbai. Gorai is accessed more usually by a ferry crossing the Manori Creek which separates Gorai from Mumbai or otherwise by the overland route via Bhayander. Gorai lies on a peninsula protruding off the north-west of the Salsette island. This used to be a separate island called the Dharavi Island, with the Malad Creek and Manori Creek joining up together and connecting to the Vasai Creek through the Ghodbunder Creek. However, with the building of the railways over the Ghodbunder Creek, and with successive urbanization and reclamation, the Ghodbunder Creek is largely gone, and the Dharavi Island is now reduced to a peninsula of the Salsette Island. Gorai is bordered by the villages of Manori and Uttan etc., on the former Dharavi Island.

View:- Gorai beach
Gorai is known for its beach and East Indian population, though in recent times the beache has become polluted.

View- Palm trees and police van

Till the 1980s Gorai was known for its clean beach and palm trees. However with the increase in pollution around Mumbai, the Arabian Sea is unfit for swimming although it is less polluted at Gorai with the other beaches in Mumbai.
Gorai has a large East Indian population. East Indians are Roman Catholic who were proselytised by the Portuguese when they arrived here in the 1500s. Gorai has three churches. The oldest one, Reis Magos or the Three Magi, on the banks of the Vairalla Tank in the village of Culvem located on the north border of Gorai, was built by the Franciscan missionaries between 1595 & 1602 [Meersman, 1971, p. 204]. The newer parish church, also named after the Three Magi, was built in 1810 [Hull, Vol. I, p. 10], and is located about three-quarters of a mile to the south of the ruined, original parish church. The third is the Infant Jesus Chapel built near the ruins of the old church.
Gorai still enjoys its calm, laid back charm quite in contrast to the fast paced life of the city just on the other bank of the creek.
The government of Maharashtra is contemplating of constructing bridge over Gorai creek to have an easy access to the Gorai Beach. The local residents of Gorai are opposing it for the reason that it will ruin the beauty of Gorai and it may be detrimental to their livelihood due to the entry of the outside people.

Till few years past, the local Gorai Police Station was not allowing any vehicles on the Beach. Now, large number of vehicles on the beach is a common scenario which is spoiling the beauty of the beach. This is happening under the nose of the local police. The photograph of the police van on the beach is sufficient evidence of the same.

The warning painted on the wall by the local police
Swimming is prohibited.
Dangerous for life.
Couples should not sit on the rocks