`Mahim Junction’, written and directed by Sohaila Kapur, tells the tale of India’s diverse people, with their differing religions, languages and cultural habits, and how, despite these differences, they are united and fight any attempt to divide or exploit them. Set in a period which flaunted larger than life heroes like Rajesh Khanna, Amitabh Bachchan, Indira Gandhi, Datta Samant and the godfather-like dons, Haji Mastaan and Karim Lala… the story harks back to a time when Bollywood heroes wore their hearts on their sleeves and the villains paved the mean streets of Mumbai with gold. Yes, it was the suave seventies.

Focusing on the love story between a Muslim boy and a Hindu girl, the play spans a vast canvas in the joie de vivre style of Hindi cinema of the 70s, tackling contemporary issues through its traditional epic style. Replete with bell-bottomed slumdogs, shimmying heroines, kaleidoscopic dancers, corny comedians and horny villains, the musical draws a portrait of a city that was and still is, India’s commercial hub. . In fact, as a film unraveling on stage, it is perhaps the first attempt in India to marry Bollywood to the stage.

The musical comedy first opened at the Edinburgh fringe as `Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan’, and won the Herald Devil Award. It was subsequently invited for a five city tour of the UK by the UK Arts Council. It then went on to perform in Singapore, Hyderabad, Delhi, Dubai, Muscat, Mumbai, and is slated to travel to China and Malaysia this winter, apart from performing again in Mumbai.


It is an affectionate spoof on Bollywood films of the 70s.The story is set in a slum that has encroached on a disused local train platform in suburban Mumbai. The motley crowd that inhabits the slum are Rahim, the local dada, a good Samaritan, in love with Radha, the local belle who dreams of becoming a film star. There is Ma, her harridan mother, who would rather sell her daughter to a lascivious old priest than allow her to marry the love of her life, who is poor. Greed is concealed under the garb of communal differences. There is Ramu, Radha’s physically challenged brother, who is ready to sacrifice his life for his sister. Adding colour is Johnny the drunk, Rahim’s friend, who nurses a bottle while dissipating his trials and tribulations in an alcoholic stupor. He eyes Ayesha, the sharp-witted cross dresser, who is a street walker with a golden heart.
Who can forget the feisty villain of the piece, the film producer, DDLJ Kaladhanda, who uses Randy Bhai, a relatively innocent Harvard graduate and an NRI raring to do his bit for the country, to further his diabolical schemes.
The musical sings and dances its way through two stories, a love tale between a Hindu girl and a Muslim boy and that of Kaladhanda, who provides the political sub text and brings the two together in true Bollywood fashion for a happy ending. A retro film-- stirred, mixed and spiced up with contemporary sensibility.

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U.K. (In its previous incarnation as `Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan’ in 2002-3)

If you are about to purchase a ticket for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s latest assault on culture, `Bombay Dreams’, then please don’t: the real action is in Edinburgh this August. Fringe shows do not come bigger than Sohaila Kapur’s Yeh Hai…

---Glasgow & Edinburgh Events Guide

What Kapur and Roy have achieved is an engagingly vivid evocation of how life in India connects with Bollywood Films in more ways than just watching on screen escapist romance & adventure… the sheer energy of the musical numbers and its unexpected edge of political home truths might well surprise and delight you.

----- The Herald (Edinburgh)

The Traverse is the venue for the show that won this year’s Herald Devil awarded for embracing the spirit of the Fringe ……it went to….a celebration of Bollywood, `Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan…’

----- The Herald (Edinburgh)

All the passion and cheesy plot devices of classic Bollywood musical cinema has come to the Traverse in a production that sings, dances and even has a political edge….at every turn of the plot, the cast breaks out into song. Big allegorical numbers that turn the city’s dusty streets into paths by rivers of gold.

----- Edinburgh Evening News

The bald headed energy with which `Yeh Hai Mumbai…’ tackles this key subject of corruption in Indian politics, its links with the huge cash machine that is Bollywood and its connection with the deliberate incitement of tensions between the Hindu and Muslim Communities, that make the show well worth seeing.

-----The Scotsman (Edinburgh)


Projecting the lives of slum-dwellers living next to railway tracks as a window to the state of the nation, Sohaila Kapur's musical Mahim Junction draws a portrait of Mumbai with a whirlwind resonance of the golden era of Indian cinema.

----Indo Asian News Service (Delhi)

The lead actors do a fine job in endearing themselves to the audience. This is to the credit of their histrionics and the director’s instructions. Tariq Vasudeva, who plays Johnny the alcoholic, benefits through some smart lines, but more so, because of his own convincing performance. Pallav Chander, not only makes Ayesha the cross-dresser his own, but makes her ours as well. Having donned the sari with grace and the provocative blouse with ease he sails through the show on a wave of talent. Karam and Jyotsana make a convincing couple in difficult love. With a large cast of nearly 20 actors, the stage is always a flurry of movement helping to create a Bombay platform.

--The Hindu (Delhi)

Mahim Junction is an amalgam of film and theatre. … showcases a time when heroes wore their hearts on their sleeves and rich villains puffed cigars on the mean streets of Mumbai…!

--Asian Age (Delhi)

Bollywood and theatre are regarded as old foes…..Director Sohaila Kapur, in a surprising turn of events.. is…peacemaker in what reviews have called `an entertaining mix of nostalgia and cinema’. Her much lauded play Mahim Junction has finally made its way to the city that inspired it.

----DNA (Mumbai)

True to its time, the characterization is loud with amplified expression. Re-enacting the 70s meant going beyond the floral shirts, orange bell bottoms and pointy white shoes. So, the friendly neighbourhood chaiwallah is handicapped, and greets people with a Bhojpuri song, and also has an opinion on everthing…Sohaila Kapur’s Mahim Junction captures Hindi cinema of the 70s in all its over-the-top glory.

----Mumbai Mirror (Mumbai)

If you are a 70s Bollywood buff, we suggest you head to the Mahim Junction. Well that is the name of Suhaila Kapur’s new play….Having wowed audiences in the UK, Dubai, Muscat and in parts of India, the play is all set to bring the glitz, glamour and issues of the 70s back to the stage.

--Mid Day (Mumbai)

The play in English lovingly spoofs the stereotypes of the 70s and recalls the nostalgia. Complete with song and dance, coy women, lecherous villains, comic cops and kitschy morality, the story is set in a slum in suburban Mumbai.

----Hindustan Times (Mumbai)


Drama, love, passion, sleaze and foot tapping music. Suhaila Kapur’s musical, Mahim Junction has every element that a successful Bollywood masala flick of the 70s had. …Writer, director Suhaila Kapur …brings out the essence and nuisance of Mumbai with every act, and ably puts her message of peace and communal harmony across…the characters of the play – not only seemed real but aptly portrayed Mumbai life.

----Khaleej Times (Dubai)

An entertaining mix of nostalgia and cinema, Mahim Junction is a tribute to the city of dreams Mumbai and its favourite child, Bollywood.

----Times of Oman (Muscat)


Bollywood fans had reveled in the spicy treat dished out by Sohalia Kapur and friends at Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre (KLPac) recently.

Performed the bonafide cast from the land of laddus and Shah Rukh Khan, the energetic actors gave the audience a whole lot of masala and laughs from start to finish in the musical Mahim Junction... The beauty of Kapur's updated version of Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan, which was first performed in 2008, lies in the rich, deep and likeable characters of Mumbai's slums. ....

.....Although it was not the traditional musical where performers burst into song and dance throughout the show, Mahim Junction captured the hearts of classic Bollywood fans with its old songs, entertaining dialogue and energy from the entire cast.

---- Malay Mail (Kuala Lumpur)