History of Mumbai

The history of Mumbai recounts the growth of a collection of seven islands on the west coast of India, becoming the commercial capital of the nation, and one of the most populous cities in the world. Although human habitation existed since the Stone Age, the Kolis, a marathi Mumbai#Etymology fishing community, were the earliest known settlers of the islands. The Maurya Empire gained control of the islands during the 3rd century BCE, and transformed it into a centre of Hindu and Buddhist culture and religion. Later, between the 2nd century BCE and 9th century CE, the islands came under the control of successive indigenous dynasties: Satavahanas, Abhiras, Vakatakas, Kalachuris, Konkan Mauryas, Chalukyas and Rashtrakutas, before being ruled by the Silharas from 810 to 1260.

King Bhimdev established his kingdom in the region in the late 13th century, and brought many settlers to the islands. The Muslim rulers of Gujarat captured the islands in 1348, and they were later governed by the Gujarat Sultanate from 1391 to 1534. The Treaty of Bassein between the Portuguese viceroy Nuno da Cunha and Bahadur Shah of the Gujarat Sultanate placed the islands into Portuguese possession in 1534. Charles II of England received possession of the islands in 1661 as part of the dowry of Catherine of Braganza, daughter of King John IV of Portugal, and leased them to the English East India Company in 1668.

The islands suffered incursions from Mughals towards the end of the 17th century. During the mid-18th century, the city emerged as an important trading town, with maritime trade contacts with Mecca and Basra. Economic and educational development characterised the city during the 19th century with the first-ever Indian railway line beginning operations between Mumbai and neighbouring Thane in 1853. The city became a strong base for the Indian independence movement during the early 20th century and was the epicentre of the Rowlatt Satyagraha of 1919 and Royal Indian Navy Mutiny of 1946. After India's independence in 1947, the territory of Mumbai Presidency retained by India was restructured into Mumbai State. The area of Mumbai State increased, after several erstwhile princely states that joined the Indian union were integrated into Mumbai State.

In 1960, following protests from the Samyukta Maharashtra movement, the city was incorporated into the dominion of the newly created Maharashtra State from Mumbai State. The city's secular fabric was torn apart in the communal riots of 1992–93, while the bombings of 1993 caused extensive loss of life and property. The city was renamed Mumbai in 1996. Mumbai has suffered several terrorist attacks from the beginning of the 21st century.

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