(Panasonic Lumix FZ50 1/1000s at f/5.6 ISO 100)
A closer look at time
(Panasonic Lumix FZ50 1/800s at f/6.3 , ISO 100)
Tower against the brilliant blue sky
(Canon EOS 400D 1/800s at f/5.6 ISO 100)
The Rajabai Tower is a clock tower in South Mumbai. It is located in the confines of the Fort campus of the University of Mumbai. The tower stands at a height of 85 m (280 ft).
The Rajabai tower was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott, an English architect. It was modelled on the Big Ben, London. The foundation stone was laid on March 1, 1869 and construction was completed in November 1878.
The total cost of construction came to Rs. 2 lakhs (Rs. 200,000), a princely sum in those days. This entire cost was defrayed by Premchand Roychand, a prosperous broker who founded the Bombay Stock Exchange on the condition that the tower be named after his mother Rajabai. Premchand Roychand's mother was blind and as a staunch follower of Jainism. She was supposed to consume her dinner before evening everyday. The evening bell of the tower helped her to know the time without anyone's help.
The tower was built in a fusion of Venetian and Gothic styles. It is built out of the locally available buff coloured Kurla stone. The tower has one of the best stained glass windows in Asia. During the British raj, it played the tunes of "Rule Britannia", "God Save the King", "Home! Sweet Home!" and "A Handel Symphony", out of a total of sixteen tunes, which changed four times a day. It currently chimes only one tune every 15 minutes.
The tower was closed to the public after it became a frequent spot for those attempting to commit suicide.