The city's water is made a hundred kilometres from the city by a series of dams along neighboring rivers in Thane. The pipes deliver water to the city, but rarely to villages closer to the dams.
Water flows in, on and around Mumbai. Even when inundated by rain, the 'Key-Men' of the Mumbai's water works, need to open and shut over 400 valves daily so as to deliver water to Mumbai’s residents on a fixed schedule.
The city has a deep history of perennial wells and springs. But when the city provides tap water, many of these wells are put to other uses. Like drying chillies in the summer.
For those who don't get water in their home, the hours of water supply are an anxious time of furtive filling and fighting.
Slumdwellers negotiate an elaborate maze of regulations so as to connect to the city's water system. The city's water regulations require slumdwellers to engage plumbers of special skill to bend pipes in this way.
Denied water to irrigate their fields, Thane's residents, like their water, migrate to the city in search of work. Note the worn surface of the left pipe. Its used for walking through (and to) the city.