Planet TopGear: The hidden garages

The MbPT has, naturally, had a long history with automobiles. The first cars that came into the country would surely have landed at the port, and back in the 1930s, General Motors had a set-up that assembled cars on land belonging to the 140-year-old MbPT. While container traffic into and out of western India is increasingly being handled by the better equipped Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, in Navi Mumbai, the MbPT is still not out of the reckoning. The day I was there, I saw hundreds of Mahindra Scorpio Pik-up Double Cabs getting ready to depart for South Africa, and three impounded Porsche Cayennes, which have been part of the MbPT landscape for the last two to three years. (“We tried to park them inside one of the sheds, but there is some problem with the gears and they can’t be moved,” said Kirtani.) Vishwanathan doesn’t think there are any unaccounted cars or motorcycles lying in one of the many sheds of the MbPT. But, as I walk around the numerous warehouses in Mazgaon, I can’t help but wonder whether there are yet more hidden cars or motorcycles in there, inside those dusty wooden crates. A Suzuki GSX-R750, maybe, or a Toyota MR2. It is a tantalising thought.

(Words: Murali K Menon, Photos: Bajirao Pawar)