Dhobi Ghats to be made clean and tourist-friendly - Mumbai
The iconic Dhobi Ghat in Mahalaxmi in Mumbai will soon be clean and tourist-friendly officials in Mumbai have announced. Dhobi Ghat are large outside laundry facility, and the city believes it holds historical significance for tourists to view.
The iconic Dhobi Ghat in Mahalaxmi, a popular tourist spot for foreigners visiting Mumbai, will soon don a new look. While the civic administration has begun the revamp of the century-old washing and drying area spread over a 23-acre plot to provide better facilities for the launderers, the BMC is also planning to build a viewing gallery for tourists in the second phase of restoration.
“In the first phase, roofs will be built over the sheds of the kilns,” said Nutan Prakash Ghotge, municipal architect. “Most of the bhattis are in a dilapidated condition and we are putting new roofs and repairing the sheds. Earlier, the roofs were made of cement tiles and asbestos, but we will now use colourful tiles,” said another official.
The BMC has, however, decided to retain the British era flooring of the Dhobi Ghat because of its historical significance. “The plan to renovate Dhobi Ghat is primarily to provide better conditions for the washermen,” said BMC City Engineer D M Phase. The Rs 2.4-crore project, mooted in 2006, is expected to be completed in about two years.
The washers locally known as Dhobis work in open to wash the clothes from Mumbai's hotels and hospitals. There are row upon row of open-air concrete wash pens, each fitted with its own flogging stone. Termed as the world's largest outdoor laundry Dhobi Ghat is a very popular attraction among foreign tourists.
The word Dhobi Ghat is used all over India to refer to any place where many washers are present. It is located next to Mahalaxmi Station on Western Railway on Saat Rasta roundabout. It can be easily seen from flyover bridge of Mahalaxmi station.