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Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier

Updated on: 11 July,2024 07:30 AM IST  |  Mumbai
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Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier

Pic/Atul Kamble

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Mind the gap


A worker sits between the platform and railway track during maintenance at the Dongri railway station that was formerly known as Sandhurst Road railway station.



Testing Hawaiian waters, Koli-style


The team before setting off on the expedition. Pics Courtesy/Instagram
The team before setting off on the expedition. Pics Courtesy/Instagram

Moana might not join him, but Mumbai boy Prabhat Koli (inset) is currently treading the waters of the North Pacific Ocean around the Hawaiian island of Maui. Koli is part of an international expedition organised by Epic Maui Swim — a call to action for ocean health. “The idea is to raise awareness about the issue of depletion of oceans,” he shared. The team has been covering 25 km stretches every night, and hope to make the 250 km across the island by the end of the month. “The weather has been unpredictable — very windy and rainy. The swells have been quite challenging,” he shared over a phone call. This has not dissuaded the team. “There is no fixed date for the finish, but we hope to complete it before the end of the month. I will be returning to Mumbai in August,” Koli told this diarist.

Lessons for Down Under

Omkar Dhareshwar (centre) interacts with the students in Marol
Omkar Dhareshwar (centre) interacts with the students in Marol

The work done by the members of the Marol Arts Village and The Dharavi Dream Project community to spruce up Bharat Van has now been caught on short films. The community received a visit from filmmaking students of Queensland Institute of Technology hosted by the NGO Beyond Borders last week. “The students visited Bharat Van, interacted with residents, even filmed the rap cypher on Sunday,” shared Omkar Dhareshwar of the Marol Arts Village. Arunabha Pal, CEO of Beyond Borders shared, “The idea is to use their efforts as an example to inspire other communities across the world to be agents of change.” 

Tales of trees

Children participate in the planting of the sardolChildren participate in the planting of the sardol

Twenty-five students and citizens joined Aditya Gadkari of the Naturalist Foundation and 5RCycle on a trail through the Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan last weekend. “It was a visit organised to commemorate Van Mahotsav held between July 1 and July 7. We spoke about native species, regeneration and distribution ecology,” Gadkari shared. The visitors had a chance to learn about plastic collection drives as well as the majestic African baobab, elephant apple and Indian rubber fig trees on the campus. Gadkari noted, “The event concluded with the planting of a sardol (sterculia villosa) sapling by the kids. It seemed suitable since it is a native species to the city and best suited to this climate.”

Cotton technology matters

A nanocellulose pilot plant
A nanocellulose pilot plant

When Union Minister for Agriculture, Shivraj Singh Chouhan visited the ICAR Central Institute for Research on Cotton Technology (CIRCOT) in Matunga earlier this week, it was not just to commemorate their centenary celebrations. “The visit was to review progress of research activities related to agriculture. We are the only institute in India with a focus on cotton,” shared principal scientist Dr N Vigneshwaran.

Director SK Shukla (centre) with Union Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan
Director SK Shukla (centre) with Union Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan

Among the innovative technologies is the use of silver and zinc nanoparticles for use in medical textile. “The institute is also working on conversion of discarded cotton into nanocellulose to be used in composite and paint,” Vigneshwaran revealed.

Abish is back on stage

Abish Mathew. Pic Courtesy/Instagram
Abish Mathew. Pic Courtesy/Instagram

After a six-year-hiatus since he last went on a tour, stand-up comic Abish Mathew is back with his live performances in the city. With shows lined up across consecutive weekends, the comedian is trying out a new/old format. “I was a musician much before I became a comedian,” Mathew shared, adding that his shows, titled Abish on Stages after Ages, will be a mix of everything he loves, including musical comedy.  “I begin with how I moved to Mumbai from Delhi in 2011, and have been pretending to be a Mumbaikar ever since,” he chuckled.

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