Not that we have anything against weddings, or dancing or three crores, and of course, we are aware that high standards and principles are luxuries that come easier to those who can afford them, but we still give Kangana Ranaut a high five for turning down the three cool crores reportedly offered to her to dance at a wedding in Delhi.
We’ve always known she had spunk, a rare intelligence and oodles of style and will blaze a unique trail of her own in filmdom. Shine on you crazy diamond.
And from Dubai comes word that Mumbai’s star neuropsychiatrist Dr Rajesh M Parikh, photographer, writer and rescuer of distressed kittens in the Cuffe Parade area is writing a book on the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa, in Dubai where he owns an apartment.
According to a source, the book that has already being considered by a big name international publisher, will carry photographs of the iconic 165-storey building by renowned photographer Namas Bhojani in 3D, and displayed in a unique design in book form.
Dr Rajesh M Parikh
Readers may recall that Dr Parikh is one of the pioneers of 3D photography and his close friends Mukesh and Nita Ambani, with who he has shared many an African safaris, had presented his stunning pictures of African wildlife at Antillia. The publication of the tome is reported to be around this time next year.
Fine letter to Modi
In our book, the finest and most significant writing to emerge out of the Modi victory is the ‘Open Letter’, penned to him by Gopalkrishna Gandhi, grandson of the Mahatma and former governor of West Bengal.
Narendra Modi and Gopalkrishna Gandhi
In a tone both gracious and firm he congratulates the Prime Minister Designate with the warmth and respect he deserves, but never for once wavering from his message: the country is looking to its future Prime Minister to be a statesman and carry the whole country with him.
“India’s minorities are not a segment of India, they are an infusion in the main. Anyone can burn rope to cinder, no one can take the twist out of it,” he writes, adding, “A historic win it has been for you, Mr. Modi, for which, once again, congratulations.
Let it be followed by a historic innings, which stuns the world by surprises your supporters may not want of you but many more would want to see you unfurl. You are hugely intelligent and will not mind unsolicited but disinterested advice of one from an earlier generation.
Requite the applause of your support-base, but equally, redeem the trust of those who have not supported you.” Which brings me to the question: a man of such calibre and wisdom (and credentials: his maternal grandfather happens to be that other stalwart C.
Rajagopalachari) deserves to be at the helm of things these days. Including him in important policy planning will be an ace move by India’s new PM!
Shashi’s spot in the sun
A Delhi jasoos informs that Mumbai native (Campion School) Shashi Tharoor has renewed his status as darling of the Delhi Lutyens set by winning his LS seat in the recent elections against all odds and getting re-elected to the Lok Sabha.
Now, we’re told there’s a move afoot to recruit him to the Congress Working Committee, which met last evening. Insiders say that Tharoor’s friend and political patron Sonia Gandhi wants him to take the lead in rejuvenating the badly mauled party.
But sources in the BJP camp say that should that occur they would reopen an investigation into the hitherto unexplained and tragic death of Tharoor’s wife, Sunanda Pushkar, last January 17 at The Leela Chanakyapuri, following a public dispute between the couple.
RIP Shakuntala Tejpal
I cannot begin to describe how wretchedly sad I felt when I heard the news that Tehelka co-founder Tarun Tejpal’s mother, Shakuntala Tejpal passed away on Sunday at his house at Moira in north Goa, after losing her battle with cancer.
To die while your son has been incarcerated, unable to spend time with him, not knowing when he will be free or if ever he will get the chance to clear his name is an unbearably sad thought.
And for Tarun, to know that his mother died, not very far from where he was incarcerated, before he cleared his name and reputation, must be perhaps one of the saddest chapters in his recent life.
I had watched Tarun’s parents at the two THINK festivals I had attended. Their pride in their brilliant son and the respect and regard he commanded amongst the best and the brightest was palpable.
To have to then bear the ignominy of his indiction on rape charges must have been a terrible blow to the elderly middle-class Punjabi couple. I am not saying that this takes away from the merits of the victim’s case or that it is anyone’s attempt to condone his crime.
That is for the courts to decide and until they do, I am happy to see that the Supreme Court has been humane enough to grant Tarun time to attend his mother’s funeral, and to grieve in peace.
All I am saying is that no family should suffer so much mishap and tragedy and that I hope Shakuntala’s last days were passed in the knowledge that no matter what, her son had done many good things of which she could be very proud, and that one day he would be given the opportunity to make good on his failures. In the end that’s all a mother wants to know.