Shaina NC and Amitabh Bachchan
"Mr Bachchan will certainly speak and most likely be persuaded to walk too," says Saudamini Mattu, niece to designers Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla, who are to showcase their creations at The Golden Door, their show for the Cancer Patient's Aids Association, presented in conjunction with politico and designer Shaina NC, who has long been associated with the cause.
Sandeep Khosla and Abu Jani
"Until last year, Manish Malhotra used to do the annual show," she says, "But recently, Shaina had requested us to step in and Mr. Bachchan has always been so gracious about giving his time for good causes."
While the Jani-Khosla segment will feature regular models, Shaina's part of the event will see a host of famous faces walk in her clothes. "It's an audience of almost 20,000 people," says Matoo, "and it's going to be spectacular." Indeed.
You would think that in a room full of politicians, businessmen, bankers and think tanks, members of the media would hardly attract much notice; however on Thursday evening, the presence of Arnab Goswami, who turned up unannounced to listen to P Chidambaram speak about his book at the Nehru Centre, seemed to be the centre of attention.
This, even though the likes of former Maharashtra CM Prithviraj Chavan, Brookings Chairman Vikram Mehta, businessman Purnendu Chatterjee, and MD IDBI Rajiv Lal, were present in the green room awaiting the arrival of the chief guest.
Looking uncharacteristically trendy in a sharp blazer and trademark jeans, the news anchor was positively swaggering when he recounted the enormous support his new venture is garnering. "I have been travelling across the country, and everywhere I speak, there are audiences of thousands who chant Republic," he said about the channel which will be launched in a few months. "It's so encouraging."
Interestingly, even though he was led straight to the front of the room by the event's delighted organisers, who had not expected his presence, Goswami remained quiet throughout the talk, and did not even ask a question when it was thrown open to the audience. Saving his fire for when he's ensconced in his own hot seat? The nation wants to know.
Pawar and glory
There appear to be many reasons to celebrate in the Sharad Pawar household this week. Daughter Supriya Sule took to Twitter, to congratulate her father on completing 50 years in the Assembly and Parliament (from 1967-2017) recently. 'Proud of you,' she said with an accompanying B&W picture of her father looking 50 years younger, and a whole lot slimmer.
Sadanand Sule, Sharad Pawar and Revati Sule
Meanwhile, on voting day, the Maratha strong man himself, known to be quite reticent, had posted a photograph of himself along with his son-in-law, the Mumbai-based businessman Sadanand Sule, and granddaughter Revati with the words 'Exercised my right to vote accompanied by Revati and Sadanand Sule'.
Incidentally, Revati, daughter of the MP from Baramati and Pawar's only child, Supriya, who was exercising her franchise for the first time, appears to have inherited her good looks from her grandmother Pratibha Pawar, a known beauty in her time.
Truth and fiction
Truth and fiction are getting increasingly hard to identify, what with breaking news, fake news, and news that's clearly been manufactured, or is a figment of someone's vivid imagination.
Kangana Ranaut and Shahid Kapoor
For weeks, we have been hearing about the so-called 'rift' between Rangoon co-stars Shahid Kapoor and Kangana Ranaut. Whether it was her remarks on Karan Johar's recent talk show, or his resentment about her receiving more remuneration than he did for the movie, or even her no-show at his birthday party, we were informed that there was a chasm of dislike that existed between the two.
However, at Wednesday night's preview of the film, we discerned no bad vibes between the film's stars. Having dropped in impromptu at the interval, Kapoor, with wife Mira, had graciously stayed on till the end of the film, exchanging banter with Ranaut. One thing we had noticed though. As people queued up to congratulate the actress on her stellar performance, we saw a look of bewilderment cloud the handsome actor's face. Perhaps it's just a case of feeling a bit overshadowed?
Loud mouth at ladies lunches
She is easily the loudest addition to that most enduring of Mumbai's traditions: ladies who lunch, and certainly one of the most entertaining, according to her fellow 'lunchees'. Whether it is her latest jewellery acquisitions, or her European spa holidays, or the weddings that she has attended recently, it is said that her booming voice, and her strident presence are always the centre of attention at these soirees.
"Everyone deliberately eggs her on knowing she loves to gossip and show off," says one of her 'close friends.' "And she always falls for the bait," she adds. "The only thing that worries us, is how to avoid others in the restaurant picking up her saucy chatter," she says. "She's entertainment, entertainment, entertainment."