Chor Bazaar, located near Bhendi Bazaar in South Mumbai, is one of the largest flea markets in India. The area is one of the tourist attractions of Mumbai. The word chor means thief in Hindi and Marathi. The market is thought to have originally been called Shor Bazaar, meaning noisy market. The current name is said to have come from a British mispronunciation. Eventually however, stolen goods started finding their way into the market, resulting in it living up to its new name. According to popular legend, if you lose anything in Mumbai you can buy it back from the “Chor Bazaar”. The market has been mentioned in popular novels, including Rohinton Mistry’s Such a Long Journey,] where it is described as “not a nice place”.
In spite of this reputation, Chor Bazaar is said to sell mostly second-hand goods rather than stolen goods. The market is now famous for antique and vintage items] A store called Mini Market offers old Bollywood posters for sale. Others offer authentic Victorian furniture, replacement parts for automobiles, etc. Although bargains are sometimes staggering, haggling is considered mandatory. This is basically an “organized” flea market, where one has to rummage through junk to find what one wants.
A popular story about the origin of the name of the market is that a violin and some other belongings of Queen Victoria went missing while being unloaded from her ship while on a visit to Bombay, and were later found for sale in the “thieves’ market”
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