Abhyas Galli (study lane) in Worli is struggling to retain its identity as a haven for youngsters who want to study in peace.
Abhyas Galli earned the sobriquet because so many youngsters used to study there. But it is now frequented by bike racers, druggies and alcoholics, shattering the serenity of the lane.
Mumbai, particularly SoBo, has some pockets where students can step out of their homes and study. Sometimes, these are set up by a corporator, equipped with lights and benches. There are also a few street corners and lanes that are not as looked after, but earn their reputation as study lanes because of relative solitude and good lighting. Let us preserve these lanes as study gallis because they serve a purpose, and are necessary in a space-starved city.
The city poses huge challenges for young adults. Most of these youngsters can only dream of a room, forget home, to call their own. They share limited space with parents, grandparents, siblings and, many a time, with the extended family. Finding a peaceful place to study becomes close to impossible. The noise and distraction at home force them to look for a place elsewhere.
This can often mean a lane near home, well-lit, relatively unclogged by traffic, where under a streetlight, books are opened, and youngsters can finish their homework or prepare for exams on their own or in the company of other students.
The priority, of course, is for civic authorities and police to tackle the social menace that threatens to dissolve the character of Abhyas Galli, so that students are not put in any danger or driven away from the one place they can call their own.
Let us strive to save Abhyas Galli; it is an important thread in the rich, historical tapestry of this vibrant city.
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