From the Royal Opera house opening doors to Mumbaikars after 23 years to the grand welcome of Prince and Princess of Cambridge, we take a look at all the events that made the year 2016 so exciting for the city of dreams.
Demonetisation rocked the financial capital of India
With the entire Indian economy faced glitches of the demonetisation move, the situation was no different for the financial capital of the country. The announcement forced Mumbaikars to line up outside ATMs and banks – a big inconvenience! From the unfortunate deaths of common men to hitting the Mumbai’s real estate sector, the note ban has left chilling effects in every nook and corner in the city.
The country’s biggest project was inaugurated off the Mumbai shores
Despite having a Rs. 3.79 lakh crore debt, the Maharashtra Government gave a nod for Rs. 3,600 crore Shivaji Memorial to be built 4 km into the Arabian Sea, off the coast of Mumbai. PM Modi arrived in the city to inaugurate the memorial on Christmas Eve. The Shivaji statue is likely to be inaugurated by 2019 and will be the tallest statue in the world. The project was proposed keeping in mind the push it will offer to the tourism industry.
Massive Fires at Deonar’s dumping ground
The Deonar dumping ground in Mumbai is one of the oldest and largest sites for dumping waste. In October, major fires broke out at this landfill which was likely caused by the methane surrounding it. The incident posed a serious threat to the health of residents living near the site making the environment unfit for human habitation.
Mumbai hosted the ‘Make In India‘ Week
Since Mumbai is the financial capital of the country, it’s only fitting that PM Modi’s ‘Make in India’ event was held here at the MMRDA grounds in Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) from 13th to 18th February. The event was arranged to encourage businesses to invest in India for their manufacturing needs. A large number of businessmen, industrialist and delegations visited the city for the event.
Opera House opened its doors after 23 years
The Royal Opera House at Charni Road, built in the British era, was re-opened after being shut for 23 years. The opera house has a 3-level auditorium. It was initially a cinema hall but will now be used for hosting various events like dance, music, concerts, and programs.
A schoolgirl’s prank kept the Mumbai police on its toes
On 29th September, a school girl told the Mumbai police in Uran that she had seen the 4-5 men dressed in Pathan suits, who she suspected to be terrorists. Following that, the police put the whole city on high alert and put most of their personnel on a hunt to find these men, only to eventually find out that the girl had played a prank on them and that there was no actual terror threat to the city. Seems like kids will do anything to get out of school these days!
We fought over entertainment
After the Uri attack, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray called for a ban on Pakistani actors from working in India. This was around the same time Karan Johar’s film, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, was due to release starring Pakistani actor Fawad Khan. Needless to say, there was now a large Raj Thackeray-shaped hiccup in the release. However, Karan Johar tackled this situation by promising to donate Rs. 5 crore to the Army welfare fund account in return for a smooth release.
Mumbai hosted The Global Citizen Festival
The Global Citizen Festival was hosted in Mumbai at the MMRDA grounds at Bandra Kurla Complex. Demi Lovato, A.R Rahman, Arijit Singh, Coldplay and Jay Z were among the artists that performed. PM Modi made an appearance over video conference. Over 80,000 people witnessed this live concert.
Women took their first steps in Haji Ali
In 2011, the trustees of the Haji Ali Dargah denied the entry of women in the inner sanctums of the holy place. However, after 5 years of battling, the Supreme Court passed an order allowing women to enter the sanctums of Haji Ali Dargah – a great step for gender equality in the city.
Ram Mandir station came as a boon to train commuters
A new station was introduced on the western side of Mumbai, between Jogeshwari and Goregaon called Ram Mandir. While the station was meant to be called ‘Oshiwara’, it was rechristened because of the existence of an old temple in the vicinity of Oshiwara. The station is of great convenience to the commuters residing in this area.
#Saifeena’s baby broke social media
Kareena Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan gave birth to their son, Taimur Ali Khan, on 20th December at Breach Candy hospital. They both thanked the media and fans for their support. However, fans had some choice things to say when it was revealed that they had decided to name their son after controversial historical figure ‘Taimur’.
Prince William and Kate Middleton paid us a visit
United Kingdon’s Prince William and Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton visited Mumbai on 11th April. The couple paid tribute to the martyrs of 2008 terror attack victims at the Taj Mahal Hotel and interacted with NGOs, Sachin Tendulkar and various Bollywood celebrities. At the end of the visit, Prince William launched the Tech Rocketship Awards.
Penguins brought to the Byculla zoo
8 penguins were brought to Jijamata Udyaan zoo from South Korea. Arrangements were made and air conditioners were installed in order to keep the Penguins alive for the visitors to see. Unfortunately, a Humboldt penguin died because of bacterial infection. However, critics are of the opinion that it may have died because of its inability to survive in different weather conditions.
Mumbaikars can now reach Delhi in 12 hours
Super fast train “Talgo” from Spain was launched in India between Delhi to Mumbai. The train has the maximum speed of 130 – 150 km/hr. Trials were successfully carried out and the journey between Delhi and Mumbai was completed in 12 hours. However, additional research and design are underway to make it convenient for the public to use.
The blue glow at the Juhu beach
In both January and November, people at the Juhu beach were surprised to see that the water along the shore was glowing blue with bioluminescence caused by microbes called phytoplankton.
Noise pollution in Mumbai was down
Mumbai was once called the “noisiest city” in India. However, increasing awareness among the masses led to the reduction in noise pollution levels this year, especially at the time of festivals. Rules like “making noise between 10 pm – 6 am is punishable” and “penalty for the use of banned horns in vehicles” imposed by the Government greatly helped in curbing noise pollution.