Reportage: Archana Masih
Photograph: Jewella C Miranda
On a rainy day, water flows out of the building through the mouths of gargoyles.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary describes gargoyles as 'a grotesquely carved figure,' yet nothing -- absolutely nothing -- about CST is grotesque.
It is incredibly beautiful. To the last detail.
The ravages of time, 30 lakh (3 million) commuters every day and a lack of conservation zeal may have taken its toll, but it hasn't clouded its remarkable grandness.
Built in 10 years to commemorate Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee in 1887, the terminus is designed in Gothic architecture, which went on to become the inspiration behind many other buildings in the old city. The Brihan Mumbai Corporation office opposite CST is one of them.
CST's large dome with its stained windows, wide arches, spires, stone turrets culminate in the statue of a lady holding a torch to the sky in her right hand and a wheel symbolising progress in the left.
No, this is not a statue of Queen Victoria.
In 1996, the statue of progress was damaged by lightening and was restored by students of the neighbouring J J School of Arts.