Photo essay: a bird’s eye view of post-lockdown life in Mumbai


Road on Sunday
Before the city brought in lockdown relaxations - relatively low traffic on a Sunday evening. (Pic: Arathi Manay)

The Sunday gone by, 13th June, was the last Sunday in Mumbai before the restrictions of the past couple of months were lifted. In residential townships, away from the bustling markets, people have been going about their essential purchases in a relatively controlled manner.

As lockdown eases, people are moving around more freely. With the monsoon already in, roadside vendors and small businesses are bouncing back, eager to make a living on every sunny day. Children want to meet their friends. We want to go out to the parks, to the shops, back to the office.

Standing on the balcony and watching the Mumbai world go by, makes an interesting pastime. There are stories in every frame. The spirit to survive and move on to greet whatever life holds is evident.

Antennae, shanties and hills
The hills kiss the grey skies, while the shanties on the slopes protect themselves from the rain with blue tarpaulin sheets. (Pic: Arathi Manay)

Read more: Did Mumbai turn the tide on COVID19 thanks to its deep coffers (and some luck)?

flowers of gul mohar
The Gul Mohar – all fresh and washed clean by the rains of the previous day, (Pic: Arathi Manay)
Crow with food
With a worm catch, it’s time to head home. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
mango sellers
The mangoes are irresistible, but business in not so brisk. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
delivering mangoes
Someone wants the mangoes home delivered. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
vegetables on sale
Got the mangoes. Now for some jamuns, tendlis and chillies. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
jack fruit lady
The jack fruit lady waits to sell off her remaining stock. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
A water filter salesman stands patiently for enquiries. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
shop closed
The coconut seller has been missing from his stall for a few days, but expected back soon. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
searching in big bag
Searching for the packages to deliver to the correct homes. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
family and new cricket bat
Dad finally agreed to buy a new cricket bat. Can’t wait to get to the gully. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
Bread and snacks
The breadwala moves his bicycle between different apartment blocks. He is lucky to be one of the few vendors allowed door to door to sell his eggs, bakery and savoury products. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
A break between deliveries. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
cycling for fun
Cycling the Sunday away. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
social distance
Social distancing while awaiting the bus. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
The balancing game is so much fun! (Pic: Arathi Manay)
child with father
If not the playground, at least some errands with dad. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
out with grandpa
If not the playground, at least a walk with grandpa, and we’re ready for the rains as well. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
rag picker women
The rag picker ladies head home with their picks. (Pic: Arathi Manay)
The ambulances and their sirens have not stopped. (Pic: Arathi Manay)

It’s great to see most people wearing masks to stay safe. As we get back to the feeling of normalcy, the ambulances with their screeching sirens remind us that we must remain vigilant.

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About Arathi Manay Yajaman 19 Articles
Arathi is a market researcher who loves to run and write. She has been actively involved in issues that affect citizens, including apartment management, waste management and lakes. She used to live in Mumbai and is now based in Bengaluru, working as a Community Anchor with Citizen Matters.