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Complex commissioner

Arthur Crawford’s tenure as a Bombay municipal commissioner has left a mixed legacy
Farrokh Jijina

When Bombay’s first municipal commissioner Arthur Crawford (1835-1911) came in for public criticism for his extravagant spending of public funds, Sir Pherozeshah Mehta, among others, rose in his defense. Mehta, who became the commissioner later, compared the civic expenditure in Bombay as being minor compared with that of London or Paris. "Appointed during an emergency… Crawford had made Bombay into a healthy town and a beautiful one too ... with roads, boulevards, footpaths, large trees planted to shade footpaths, splendid fountains,” Mehta noted. Businessman and environmentalist Cyrus Guzder quoted this while chairing a function to launch Arthur Travers Crawford: A......

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