Bandra: Wikis


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Location of Bandra
in Mumbai and India
Coordinates 19°03′19″N 72°49′53″E / 19.0553°N 72.8314°E / 19.0553; 72.8314
Country  India
State Maharashtra
District(s) Mumbai Suburban
Parliamentary constituency Mumbai North Central
Assembly constituency Bandra
Zone 3
Ward H West
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)

Bandra (Marathi: वांद्रे) is a suburban neighborhood in western Mumbai (formerly Bombay), popularly nick-named "Queen Of The Suburbs". It is home to a railway station on the Western line of the Mumbai Suburban Railway. It is also home for various Bollywood celebrities who live along the Bandstand Beach and in Palli hill area of Bandra. A hot spot for the rich and famous with some of the best restaurants, pubs, bakeries, French salons – you name it and they are in Bandra. Bandra Bandstand is specially a favorite place of many who come to see filmstar Shahrukh Khan's house and enjoy the seaside view.

With a large cosmopolitan population in Mumbai, predominantly Catholic Bandra is famous for its churches and Parsi fire-temple; the Tata Agiary on Hill Road and Mount Mary's Basilica stands out in particular. Bandra is also famous because of its coastline, which has promenades lined along Carter Road, Bandstand and Reclamation.



Bandra is a possible adaptation of Bandar, the Persian word for Port. There are other views on the origin of the name, one stating that it is derived from a Portuguese princess and another more plausible one that it is a corruption of Bandar-gah in Persian (Bandar is a common word for Port in Iran). Vandre in Marathi and Bandar in Persian both mean port and come from the same Sanskrit root word. The area was under Silhara dynasty in the 12th century. It is referred to as "Bandora" as seen on gravestones in the cemetery of St. Andrew's Church and in the writings of Mountstuart Elphinstone of the British East India Company which describe the endeavours to acquire the island of Salsette.

Mumbai as seen from Bandra Reclamation
A stall on Linking Road

In 1543, the Portuguese took possession of the islands of Bombay (there were 7) by force. The Portuguese gave the Jesuit priests the sole ownership of Bandra, Parel, Wadala and Sion. In 1570 the Jesuits built a college and a church in Bandra which was called St Anne's College, or 'Santa Anna' Church. In the mid-18th century, the traveller John Fryer records that the Jesuit church, which stood near the sea shore, was still in use. The Portuguese built several churches in Bandra, including the famous St. Andrew's Church, which has the distinctive Portuguese-style façade. Bandra has the unique distinction of having the most Roman Catholic churches anywhere in the world: six churches with their own separate parishes(all within a four km2 area), and also the world famous Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount, affiliated to the parish of St. Andrew's, Bandra. The Churches are: Mount Mary's Basilica, Mount Carmel, St. Peter's Church, St. Andrew's Church, St. Theresa's Church, St. Anne's and St. Francis Of Assisi Church.

In 1733 when the Kunbi farmers migrated to this island from Colaba, because the fish manure they used was banned, they founded St. Andrew's church (which is still standing and in regular use), St. Stanislaus's Orphanage (now St. Stanislaus High School, among the best boy's school in Bombay) and a monastery of St. Anne. St. Anne's was blown up on the orders of the English to prevent it falling into Maratha hands in the year 1737, and regained in the same year when the Portuguese troops were aided by the English, a slaughterhouse was built on the same spot, and assigned to the Dakhni Muslims for operating it.

There was a section of Kokani/Konkani (Konkani Muslims) in the present eastern part of Bandra (currently across the station / railway lines), called Navpada/Naupada previously known as Naopara. These Kokani Sunni Musalman or Konkani Muslims, all Hanafi, had migrated from inner parts of Thane district like Vasai, Nalasopara, Bhiwandi, Rabodi. Nine prominent Kokni Muslim families inhabitated here, so it was named as "Nav" (meaning nine, in Marathi) and Pada (meaning "Village"). They built the Kokani Masjid (Konkani Mosque), and a cemetery and lakes, which can be traced back more than 300 years. The inhabitants of this area were mainly running cotton hand looms and by the introduction of power looms in Bombay city, this industry died and they started the milk business and The area was then divided as Navpada East and Navpada West, by the introduction of the Bombay Baroda Central Indian Railway (BBCIR). A major part of lands of this area was acquired by the Railways, where Bandra Station, Bandra Terminus (Earlier Bandra marshalling yard) and Railway lines exists. The present lake called "Bandra Talao" or "Lotus Tank" formerly known as "Motha Reservoir" was one of the properties of these Kokani Muslims, which was later acquired by the Municipal Corporation for maintenance this lake is now declared the status of Heritage II.

St. Fatima, Bandra

The chapel of Mount Mary, was built around 1640. Local tradition has it that this was destroyed in 1738 during a Maratha raid. The statue of the virgin was recovered from the sea by fishermen and temporarily installed in St. Andrews, before being shifted to the rebuilt Mount Mary in 1761. To this day the statue is venerated and many miracles, minor and major, are attributed to the deity by all communities. In her honour, a fair is held for the duration of eight days, (starting on the Sunday following September 8) during which pilgrims come from as far North as Vasai, Virar and as far East as Thane, to venerate at the Basilica of Mount Mary.

Bandra remained a village with plantations of rice and vegetables in the low-lying areas of the island until getting connected to Mahim by a causeway in 1845. Although many bungalows were built in the boom years of the 1860s and 70s, the fashionable Pali Hill area, now inhabited by members of the film community, saw the first constructions only in the 1880s.

R D National College was originally set up in 1922 in Hyderabad, Pakistan under the guidance of Annie Besant. After the partition of India, it was set up again, in 1949, in Bandra.

The west-side, called "Bandra (West)", had evolved into one of the more fashionable suburbs by the middle of the 20th century. However, the East soon followed its more popular sibling, and in the mid-to-late 90s emerged as a predominantly commercial zone, consisting of the Bandra-Kurla Commercial Complex. Bandra West is also famous for Pali Hill and Carter Road areas which are home to many movie stars such as Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Rekha, Dilip Kumar, Sanjay Dutt and many more. It also has the city's best restaurants, bars, shopping and hang out places. Otters Club, one of the city's premier clubs, is located on Carter Road, near Jogger's Park.

Bandra (East) is the capital of the Bombay suburban district. However, it is completely overshadowed by its neighbouring city district with regards to government departments. The most prominent office is the suburban collector's office. Bandra (East) also has State Government Quarters.

Bandra and the Sea Link


Sunset at Bandra Bandstand

Bandra is known to be split by the local railway-line into Bandra (West) PIN 400050 & Bandra (East) PIN 400051. Bandra (W), has historically grabbed most of the spotlight, and sits snug between the railway-line (on the East) and the Arabian Sea (on the West). Bandra (East) houses the state government employees' homes.


Bandra Railway Station(2008)
Bandra Worli SeaLink Project

Bandra railway station is connected via the Western Railway and the Harbour Line, which is an offshoot of the suburban Central Railway. It also has a newly built terminus called Bandra Terminus in Bandra (E) from where trains bound for northern and western India are scheduled regularly. The Important trains include :

  • Bandra - Indore Express
  • Bandra - Patna Express
  • Bandra - Jaipur Express

BEST buses, autorickshaws and taxis are abundant. The Bandra-Worli Sea Link bridge connects the Bandra West shoreline linking it with Worli in central Mumbai.; Due to Bandra's central location, most parts of the city are easily accessible.

Mount Mary's Basilica


  • Mount Mary's Basilica
  • Mount Carmel Church
  • St. Peter's Church
  • St. Theresa's Church
  • St. Andrew's Church
  • St. Vincent de Paul Church
  • St. Anne's Church
  • St. Francis of Assisi

Schools and Colleges

  • Purshottam High School
  • IES' New English School
  • Cardinal Gracias High School in Bandra East
  • Arya Vidya Mandir - A co-ed school located opposite St Andrew's School.
  • Auxillium Convent High School - A girls-only school located beside Kumar Gaurav's bungalow.
  • Bandra Urdu High School
  • B. A. F. Petit Girls High School - It is the only one residential girls' school in Mumbai.
  • Apostolic Carmel Convent School
  • Durello Convent
  • Father Angel High School and College
  • St. Elias High School
  • St. Anne's High School
  • St. Joseph's High School
  • St. Stanislaus High School
  • St. Theresa's High School
  • St. Andrews College
  • Mahatma Gandhi Vidyamandir - Located at Govt Colony, Bandra (E)
  • R. D. National College of Arts and Commerce and W. A. Science College, Linking Road, Bandra (W)
  • Thadomal Shahani Engineering College, Linking Road,
  • MMK College of Commerce & Economics, Linking Road,
  • Rizvi College of Arts' Science and Commerce
  • Late Bhausaheb Hiray College Of Architecture
  • MET College in reclamation
  • Chetana's R.K. Institute of Management and Research
  • Fr. Conceicao Rodrigues College of Engineering
  • Government Polytechnic, Mumbai


Next station south:
Mumbai suburban railway : Western Railway Next station north:
Khar Road
Stop No: 12 KM from starting: 14.66 Platforms: 5
Next station south:
Mumbai suburban railway : Central Railway (Harbour Line) Next station north:
Khar Road
Stop No: 11 KM from starting: 15 Platforms: 2

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