The People Place Project, a curator of contemporary real stories, released People Called Mumbai in 2014, a book with inspirational stories of Mumbaikars, who among several others shape how the city functions. Writer Vinitha Ramchandani has adapted 20 stories from the original collection for a children's edition.

The illustrations have been created by Happy Fish Illustrations and Comics
The illustrations have been created by Happy Fish Illustrations and Comics

"The worlds of urban children have shrunk. They need to see people who are different. The goal of the book was to experience empathy. The experience you have of a city is that of the people," shares Ramchandani, about the thought behind the book.

Preeti Vyas, the founder of Fun Ok Please, the book's publishers, feels that narratives around Mumbai always tend to be success stories. "This is an anthropological exercise, like a witness to Mumbai. It's important for children to understand that there are many Mumbais within Mumbai. Children today have a bubble existence and their worlds don't end up colliding or merging with others."

A few true stories include that of a man whose job is to collect the waste fish in Khar Koliwada and supply it to pharma companies. Another is of a girl from the Northeast who comes to the city to become a model but is unsuccessful.

The language and narrative have been kept simple, with information boxes and illustrations by Happy Fish Illustrations and Comics. On the day of the book release, kids chosen from a contest on social media will be invited to enact some of the stories.

LAUNCHES ON: October 8, 4.30 pm
AT: The Darbar Hall, Asiatic Society of Mumbai, Fort.
COST: Rs 299