Mulji Jetha Fountain, Bombay, an Indo-Saracenic monument designed by architect Frederick William Stevens (1847-1900) in collaboration with John Griffiths (1837-1918), the long-time principal of the JJ (Sir Jamsetjee Jeejeebhoy) School of Art, Mumbai. Griffiths is credited with the sculptural designs. Erected in 1894, this familiar landmark has red Aberdeen granite pillars supporting its dome, and is of three tiers, reaching forty feet. it is carved with a profusion of Indian motifs and animal heads. It stands at the Mint Road junction, Mumbai.

Closer view of the carvings: elephant heads can be seen here above the drinking area (the one on the right with a broken trunk), and the water-spouts themselves are in the shape of animal heads.

The fountain is a memorial to Dharamsi Mulji, the only son Ratansi (or Ruttonsee) Mulji, a self-made and philanthropic cotton-merchant. A Times of India report has quoted Ratansi's great-great-grandson as saying, "Dharamsi was fond of books and wanted to go to England to study but he died due to either plague or TB in 1889." Hence the unusual and poignant statue of a lad simply standing, eternally absorbed in a book, in the midst of the teeming city.

Photographs by Ramachandran Venkatesh, and text and formatting by Jacqueline Banerjee. You may use the images without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the photographer and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite it in a print one. [Click on the images for larger pictures.]


Dwivedi, Sharada, and Rahul Mehrotra. Fort Walks. Mumbai: Eminence Designs, 1999.

London, Christopher. Bombay Gothic. Mumbai: India Book House, 2002.

Ram, Sharmila Ganesa. "Mumbai: A few fountain memorials spout new life." Times of India. 31 May 2015. Web. 1 July 2016.

Last modified 4 July 2016