Kumbharwada, where a community of potters has been staying for many generations, is emblematic of the pressures on livelihood in Dharavi,Mumbai.
The Kumbhars, a community of potters from Saurashtra in Gujarat, were first relocated here from South Bombay in 1932 (after two previous relocations, always to the northern edge of the city as it was defined at the time).
They found a swampy, uninhabited district with plenty of space for their kilns and houses. Many years later, about 1200 families now live in Kumbharwada and most of the free space in the area has been taken up by kilns for firing the traditional earthenware pottery that the community makes for a living. There is no further room for expansion. The potters themselves are well aware that to be competitive in the long term, they must fire modern ceramics rather than earthenware. But such projects are unrealizable without the infrastructure or space for new kilns. Also bank financing is not easily available to people who have no collateral and therefore the Kumbhars must look for investment capital within their restricted family groups. In the meantime many of the younger generation are turning to new occupations such as carpentry, diamond cutting and even the merchant navy, as plastic is replacing earthenware as a material for many of the articles produced here.
At Salem of Tamil nadu, our sourashtrians paLo at Salem City; had a adjucent paLo called "Kumbaar paLa " which is Tamil Speaking potter's of Tamil nadu. We also used to call the Potters as " KumbAr" nearest to Sanskrit word "KumbhakAraha" . Traditionally we at Salem are weavers so we are called our self as " vinkar" nearly to Gujarati word "vaNkar".
However the "PaLo" is equalent to " Wada" or "Bhag" are the two words was not exist among Salem sourashtrians. But We had to call the Salem Skandashramam's " Kannimaar odai" as " Kennigal Wada". This word can force us to assume the word "Wada" was exist among Salem sourashtrians for some decade before.
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