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The Great Mumbai Textile Strike... 25 Years On

'Today nothing remains, everything is gone'

January 18, 2007
Sitting on a bench outside China Mill in the central Mumbai area of Sewree, Pandurang Laxman Salvi, 57, mixes his tobacco with lime and pops it into his mouth.

He brings a stool for me to sit and calls out to his friends Govind Tushaba Dalvi and Anaji Sambhaji Pawle to join us.

From where we are sitting, we can see hectic construction activity at the site where China Mill once stood. The Dosti group is constructing huge towers on the site.

At a short distance from where we sit is Swan Mills, which too is being demolished for a new skyscraper to be built.

Pointing out to China Mill's huge, still undemolished, chimney, Salvi says, "Once there used to be smoke coming out regularly, there used to be so much activity. I worked for 30 years in the mill. Today nothing remains. Everything is gone. I am without a job and no future and so is the case of my friends."

Reportage: Syed Firdaus Ashraf | Photographs: Sanjay Sawant

Image: Pandurang Salvi, Anaji Pawle and Govind Dalvi outside what used to be China Mill

Also see: The decline of Mumbai and its mills


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