Ticca Garis & Taxis Parked outside Taj Mahal Palace Hotel
Ticca Gans were horse-drawn Victoria carriages (named after the British monarch), and were the only mode of transport to come to Bombay in 1882 after The Bombay Tramway Company Limited was formally set up in 1873.
The Bombay Presidency enacted the Bombay Tramways Act 1874, under which the company was licensed to run a tramway service drawn by one or two horses. In 1905, the newly formed concern, The Bombay Electric Supply & Tramways Company Limited, bought The Bombay Tramway Company, and the first electrically operated tram cars appeared on the city roads in 1907.
There were three categories of Ticca Garis, or licensed cabs. Those of the first class were conspicuous by their absence and it was rumoured that the term was applied to funeral carriages. The second class Ticca was less stoulty constructed but cleaner than the London four-wheeled cab of that time. Ticcas belonging to the third class were ramshackle contraptions drawn by half- starved ponies.
This quaint mode of transport was gradually replaced in time. The first automobile was brought to Bombay in 1897-98. The first car imported by an Indian belonged to the eminent industrialist Jamshedji Tata
Today, instead of the Victories in front of the Taj, there are black and yellow taxis. But, one can still hire a Ticca Gari for a negotiated sum and drive along the sea face for an experience.