Art & Entertainment

Goodbye Kaali Peeli: Celebrities Share Their Best Memories Of Riding Mumbai’s Iconic Premier Padmini

Mumbai’s Premier Padmini taxis can no longer be seen in the city. The last of them took their final ride earlier this week. Here are a few of your favourite celebrities sharing their best memories of using the famous taxi.

Kaali Peeli Taxi
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Mumbai’s Premier Padmini taxis can no longer be seen in the city. The last of them took their final ride earlier this week. The reason for the iconic kaali peeli taxis going obsolete is the citizen’s move towards Ola and Uber. Kaali peeli does have nostalgia attached to it, and not just for common citizens, even celebrities have their fond memories of the same.

Here are a few of your favourite celebrities sharing their best memories of using the kaali peeli Premier Padmini:

Ismail Umar Khan

I grew up in a middle-class family, and many of our neighbours were from the lower middle class. In our neighbourhood, I often saw the classic Kaali Peeli taxis and one of our neighbours actually owned one with the number 56. His friends affectionately called him ‘Chappan bhai’ after his taxi’s number, and everyone in the neighbourhood knew him by that name. During my teenage years, I remember going to the Drive-in Theatre in Bandra East, which is now part of BKC (Bandra-Kurla Complex). I watched the movie "Waqt Ki Deewar" starring Sanjeev Kumar and Jitender there. I went to the theatre with my brother and sister, and it was a memorable experience. The Kaali Peeli taxis were once a lifeline for the city of Bombay, and it’s sad to see them disappearing from the streets. The memories of those taxis will always stay with me, reminding me of a time when they were an integral part of the city’s life.

Mehul Vyas

The sight of Kaali Peeli taxis disappearing from the roads has left a profound sense of nostalgia within me. During my childhood, I eagerly anticipated the opportunity to ride in those iconic Padmini Taxis that roamed the streets of our town. There was something uniquely charming about those classic black and yellow cabs that resonated deeply with my young heart. During childhood, I would get very excited to travel in the Padmini Taxis in town. Driving to SiddhiVinayak Temple, Chowpatty and Marine Drive were the best days of my life. I will always cherish those memories.

Angad Hasija

Absolutely, when you think of Mumbai, those black and yellow taxis immediately come to mind. They’re like a symbol of our childhood memories. Even people from other cities recognize that this is a Mumbai thing, something that began right here. It’s kind of disappointing that they’ve been discontinued because it was something special and unique to our city. It’s like we’ve lost a part of what made Mumbai stand out.

Sneh Binny

It’s disheartening to bid adieu to Mumbai’s iconic ‘Premier Padmini’ taxis. These classic black-and-yellow taxis have been an integral part of Mumbai’s identity for many years, and they hold a special place in the hearts of both locals and visitors. My earliest memory of these iconic taxis goes back to my childhood days when I used to visit Mumbai with my family. I remember the distinctive sight of these vintage taxis lining the streets, their charming old-world aesthetic juxtaposed against the modern cityscape. The rugged yet reliable Premier Padmini taxis became a symbol of Mumbai, just like the Gateway of India or the local trains. They were not just a mode of transportation but a nostalgic journey through time.

Ayush Khatri

Every city and every country has something that makes them special. Think about Rome and Paris, they have iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower. Wherever you go, like New York, you’ll spot the Statue of Liberty. These things matter because when people visit these places, be it Singapore, Hong Kong, Disneyland, or even Macao, each one has its own unique qualities. India, in particular, has a lot of unique features, like our rich cultural diversity. We have many gods and goddesses, and we follow different types of food and traditions. In Hinduism, there are different groups, called castes. If you visit Kolkata, you’ll see that every house there looks different, and it’s the same for houses in Mumbai, where there’s an apartment system. Each place has its own special charm, and the people who live there might not fully realize it, but for those coming from different cities, states, countries, or cultures, these differences are very meaningful. At some point, our beloved Padmini taxis were a source of pride for us because they represented the spirit of Mumbai, and they always will. But with the way things are changing, modern technologies like Ola and Uber are taking over. So, in the future, everything might become more standardized. Things might become more automated, and everyone might start following the same routine, living in 2 BHK apartments, using electric cars, and all having the same touchscreen phones. That’s what I mean. We have to move forward. So, we bid farewell to the Kaali Peeli taxis, especially the Padmini, and we’ll miss them. I have great memories of my early visits to the city, riding around in those cabs. Since auto-rickshaws don’t travel on highways, I think I’ve covered a lot of ground in those taxis, and it’s left a lasting impression and wonderful experiences.

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