As intimidating as it might sound, Bombay High Court is also a very gorgeous space. Why you ask? They have a tiny court museum in their premise. We couldn't believe it ourselves, so we decided to check it out.
Room Number 17. That's the address if you're at Bombay High Court and are looking for the museum that you have been hearing and reading about. It is situated just past the winding Victorian corridors of the High Court. It's going to be almost four years since the museum was inaugurated in 2015. It is not a popularly known spot to most of Mumbai even today.We had to see it to believe it, and believe us, we came back with a wide smile on our faces and whole lot of information about the historical judicial system and about advocates from as long as the British era.
The interiors of the museum are designed exactly like a court room. We were amazed at how well the space has been curated- with old legal rolls, portraits of the advocates and a minuscule model of the Bombay High Court in a corner.
We found Barrister M.K Gandhi’s certificate from the year 1891, and his application to study law dating back to 1890s. Vallabhbhai Patel’s certificates and degree were displayed alongside too.
Walk straight up ahead and you will find yourself time-travelling to a court room from 1900 that was modeled after the 20th century court room. Everything had a very British feel attached to it- the wooden chairs, tables, a feather ink pen and a vintage typewriter, ‘Mignon 1905’. To top it off, we found a British advocate’s gown, wig and box displayed safely inside a glass door. The walls of the museum are bearers of portraits and informative charts that recollect the rich and intertwined Indo-British legal history.
We were completely in awe of the museum. It was almost like we discovered a secret door to the world of old judicial legal documents and the British era. It’s a fitting museum for anyone who a) is intrigued by the legal history b) loves the sprawling Victorian architecture of the Bombay High Court.