Ambani league

Malavika SangghviThe highlight of the mega party for Nayantara Kothari and Shamit Bhartia hosted by family matriarch Kokilaben Ambani with the rest of the clan this Saturday without doubt were the speeches and song featuring the Ambani Gen Next compered by Shah Rukh Khan.

SRK in his inimitable style set the ball rolling with his quip to the Ambani progeny, “Compared to your fancy degrees from Brown, Stanford, Yale, Wharton Columbia etc, I’m uneducated,” he joked.


Isha with dad Anil Ambani, Nayantara and Arjun Kothari
Isha with dad Mukesh Ambani, Nayantara and Arjun Kothari

“Instead of an Ivy League, they should call it an Ambani league!” And he wasn’t that far off, given that between them the cousins (Akash, Isha, Anant, Anmol and Anshul Ambani, Vikram and Isheta Salgaoncar, and Nayantara and Arjun Kothari) represent some of the world’s best educational institutes. This however, we were happy to see didn’t interfere with their naughty sense of humour or impish sense of fun while they gently teased their cousin or welcomed their new brother-in-law.

Akash Ambani, Anmol with mom Tina Ambani
Akash Ambani, Anmol with mom Tina Ambani

As one observer remarked, “Going by their polish and international sophistication, Gen Three looks like it will outdo even Gen Two. And the coolest cat of the evening? Easily Dhirubhai’s youngest grandchild Anant, whose earthy charm and easy confidence reminded every one of the late patriarch himself!

Isheta and Vikram Salgaoncar
Isheta and Vikram Salgaoncar

Big ticket lecture
It’s become something of a big ticket event on Mumbai’s annual intellectual calendar bringing together some of its finest minds and most vibrant personalities; and this Thursday, once again some of Mumbai’s best and brightest will gather at the IMC at Churchgate for another installment of the 15th Vasant Sheth Memorial to be delivered by noted Professor Sugata Bose, Gardiner professor of History at Harvard University.

Subhash Chandra Bose
Subhash Chandra Bose

Bose, the grand nephew of Subhash Chandra Bose and the son of the great nationalist Sarat Chandra Bose will speak on “Colourful Cosmopolitanisms: Bombay Calcutta and the Indian Ocean,” a subject which given the rise of conservative and reactionary forces in the country is not only timely but compelling. A visionary business leader and an entrepreneurial genius the swashbuckling Vasant Sheth in whose name the lecture series has been named in memory of established Great Eastern Shipping, a juggernaut in international shipping.

Sugata Bose
Sugata Bose

Previous speakers have included Romila Thapar, Sir Robert Swan, and Liaquat Ahmed, the Pulitzer Prize winner among others. Incidentally a piece of trivia that got us even more excited: As if Bose’s family heft were not considerable enough he happens to be married to none other than the Mary Richardson, Professor of history at Tufts University Ayesha Jalal, the grand-niece of the great Urdu writer Sadat Ali Manto whose vivid writings on Mumbai’s mean streets are unsurpassed. And though she’s not coming, we look forward to hearing her illustrious husband’s speech on a subject close to our hearts!

Superstar spat
So, who were the two gorgeous superstars overheard squabbling in public this weekend at a high profile event? And what on earth do two people allegedly in love have to fight about? Guests at the party couldn’t help noticing the tension between the two individuals. “He looked pissed off and she looked in a sulk,” said one, adding “But after the stand-off we saw him give her a hug and it looked like the tension had passed.” Whew!

So long, farewell
The warmth of the evening made up for the chill in the air, says our source about the farewell party given to Ratan Tata by his colleagues on Saturday.
Held on the gardens of the Taj Land’s End, the evening was a private and heartfelt one where top Bombay House executives, Tata board members (like Deepak Parekh) along with Tata employees expressed their gratitude and good wishes for their towering outgoing chairman.

Ratan Tata
Ratan Tata

As for the food, no surprises that it was beyond compare: sourced from some of the Taj’s finest eateries like the Golden Dragon, Thai Pavilion (an RT favourite) Zodiac Grill and the Konkan Café it was second to only the other highlight of the evening: fellow celebrated Parsi Boman Irani who ably compered the proceedings!

AR Rahman

Music on their mind
Will the guys at the Blue Frog ever sit back and rest on their laurels? After establishing itself as a leading live music venue and a top rung recording studio (Rahman’s first choice we’re told) our sources say that next on the anvil is a music school. No more details are being given at the moment, but from what we hear it’s imminent and will employ some of the finest talent to mentor and teach!
We like!

PR weddings!
Hoo boy. Since when have PR companies begun issuing invitations to weddings? Long have we grumbled about their ubiquity and their role in depersonalising the party scene in Mumbai. But weddings? Good grief! We recently received an e-mail invite from a leading PR agency to a high profile wedding this month. Is that how it got high profile to begin with we wonder... 

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