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Mumbai’s a great city – it’s amazing, beautiful and full of energy, dreams and hope. It keeps the child in you alive. It makes you want to dream, hope and be always on your toes, so that you don’t lag behind at any time. It imparts a certain security of being in one of the safest places in the world. And, if you are feeling low the city gives your spirits a boost.

But poverty and begging upset me. At every traffic signal, at every street corner, there are children begging, with torn clothes and deprived of food and shelter, reminding you of how much one must do for them. I wish one could do something about this or create some work for them. It takes away the energy the city otherwise exudes.

Mumbai has everything. It has something for everyone. It even gives hope to the poor, the starving and beggars but the way the rich and the poor co-exist is sometimes heartbreaking.

There’s no place as beautiful as Mumbai. There’s no other place in the entire world where one can walk safely at night and still be unafraid. So we need to look after the city. The city boosts your spirits. I am a Mumbai child and it has shaped me completely.

As told to Lata Khubchandani

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