An Ode To Varsha Ritu Of Mumbai

How to define my love for rainy season of this city ‘Mumbai’?, It would be hard for me to articulate in few words, But I’ll try. The rainy season brings a lots of joy for Mumbaikars. But that’s just one aspect of it & How it can wreak havoc in the lives people due to flooding, That’s the only this forever moving city stops for some time. 

Monsoon season has always been my favorite season of the year from the childhood days. Whenever it rains, It changes my mood. & brings a smile on my face. But i never thought i would be documenting this monsoon season through the medium of photography one day. 

‘Varsha’ Means Rain & ‘Ritu’ means season in Sanskrit. The reason i went with Sanskrit because i wanted express myself in the language i was closer to while growing up. Varsha Ritu is my long term project of documenting rainy season in my city. This is currently my third year of documenting for this project.

This city is huge. It varies a lot even if you just walk a kilometer. That’s how diverse this city is. I want to go to all these places to see and feel how it looks once it starts rain over there.

I love how the mood of this city changes once it rains, People start running looking for shelter, People cover themselves with whatever they can find, Plastic sheets, Utensils. Children start playing throwing water on each other. Witnessing all this brings so much joy to me.

When i started this project, I had to save my camera from this pouring. So i got some rain cover from amazon, It’s somehow working for me from last three years. I broke many umbrellas, I got wet many times. But the fun i had while documenting that I’ll remember for the rest of my life. 

Nowadays, I think about it a lot how i can take project this forward. It can stop a city. in my lifetime, I have seen train stopped because tracks were flooded. People had to walk on the tracks from station to station. People living in slums have to cover their homes with long plastic sheets to protect it from rain.

From agricultural point of view, we are very dependent on the good rainy season. That’s the paradox. 

Usually, The monsoon season arrives in Mumbai in the second week of June ending the dry and hot spell of summer heat. There are lots of festivals comes during the rainy season such as Ganesh Chaturthi, Navratri, Dahi Handi etc. 

Usually the fisher folks stops fishing during the first two months of rain. since Monsoon season is a breeding season. That’s how the balance is maintained.

They start fishing again on the occasion of Narali Purnima during the month of augusut.

The Monsoon season is not what it used to be. It has become harder to predict. This year season was delayed by two weeks. In August we literally had very less or no rain. 

But one thing for sure even at this age, The inner child inside rouse once it starts to rain.

I am excited to see how i can document rain in upcoming seasons. Meanwhile Thank you for reading.