D Souza Chawl: Most Haunted Place in Mumbai Famous for Spooky Tales of Haunting Women Around Well
Mumbai holds fame as the most crowdest cities in India and eight in the world. Despite the fact, the city has a lot of spooky tales to haunt the people living there. Several movies, soap operas, and literary works have well depicted the city of Mumbai and its infamous chawls.
These are most visibly present around the erstwhile textile mill regions in Parel, South Bombay, however, these chawls have emerged as a common housing typology across the city. Today, they represent a slice of the lifestyle of Mumbai.
Associated with the burgeoning middle-class communities of the city and their communal habits of living, the chawls developed out of the specific socio-economic status of the society.
The D Souza Chawl, located near the Canossa Primary School in Mahim, Mumbai is similar to most other chawls in Mumbai. The chawl is similar to any other with houses on both sides and the narrow road passing through it.
Thousands of families live here with their everyday problems just like any place in Mumbai. So now the question arises what’s so special about this chawl?
Water is one of the biggest problems for any chawl so it’s not new that this chawl was also suffering from the most common problem around the area. The water was scarce hence many problems occurred.
We all know the importance of water in our day to day life. Now, what will happen when you are not able to find any water for many days? Naturally one would find other sources of water to solve this everyday problem faced by everyone.
The families living in the chawl found some traces of underground water in the centre of the chawl. So dug a well at the place where the traces of water were found. The problem of water solved and everyone was using the water from the well and everything was going smoothly.
Except for the fact that the well did not have any protective wall constructed around it. The people living in the chawl thought that it’s not that necessary to build a wall around the well. It was just a disaster in waiting. And that day was not far when the disaster did strike.
Death of a Lady:
One night, a woman from one of the families felt thirsty at night and decided that she should drink some water. She searched around the house for some drinking water but failed to find any water stored in the house.
Hence, she decided the best option was to go to the well and drink some. So deciding this she went to the well and drank some water but as I previously said the well was awaiting disaster and due to some water which fell around the well the lady slipped in the well. She screamed for someone to help.
It is said that her screams were very painful and that she shouted to the whole night for someone to save her from her impending death. But unfortunately, no one heard her screams of terror and pain.
Next day when some of the chawl women went to collect water for their daily activities. They saw something in the well and realized that it’s the lady. The lady died inside the well as no one heard her the previous night which ended in her death.
Naturally, the people of the chawl were not ready to use the water from the well. So after removing the body of the lady from the well. The covered the well and gave her the proper burial. The family of the woman could not live in the chawl in any longer because of their grief and decided to leave it for good.
The well was closed permanently and no one even dared to use it. Now, this is the start of the horror of the chawl. They found a new source for water but the covered well was still haunting them. The disaster has struck and nothing can change that. It is said that the lady who died in the well still sometimes can be seen sitting at the center of the chawl where the well used to be.
Apart from this, there is another ghost sighting where new people to chawl and Mumbai saw a phantom guard sitting under a fig tree near the haunted well. There is no story regarding the guard and where he came from but he is also seen just sitting there from time to time. Nobody is sure why new people are only able to see the guard.
Sometimes the people living in the chawl also heard the sound of anklets through the night. But there has been no sighting of the lady with an anklet. Whether it's the same lady as the one sitting on the well or not? The people of chawl say that both these ladies are different. Apart from this, the story of the second lady is unknown to date.
Till this day the lady in the well can be seen sometimes at the center area of the chawl. Her painful screams are also heard by some of the people living in the surrounding area. The spirit of the lady just sits where the well used to be and screams painfully for someone to her help her and save her but it’s never heard of her to hurt anyone in the chawl.
Nobody knows when this incident happened or how long it’s been since the well has been covered up and why nobody ever re-dug the well? All these questions arise but nobody is able to answer it. The nearby police had not registered any such report of a drowning.
Many Unanswered Questions:
So how long ago did the lady died or how old is the chawl? The people living in the chawl say that the lady must have born and brought up in the chawl itself and spent her life here only so that is why so is emotionally connected to it and is not willing to leave the place behind even after her death.
But shouldn’t the lady be more connected to her family rather than the chawl and its people so why didn’t she leave the chawl when her family decided to leave it. And what about all the other people living and dying there?
Shouldn’t there be more spirits like her in the chawl with all the families and the member staying and spending their whole life there as well as dying and facing many problems? Shouldn’t they be connected to the place also? But what can we say about this matter but may her spirit eventually find peace?
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