Here comes the sun

And just as the sun appears, dispelling clouds after a storm, so too there is good news for the family of the late Congress leader Murli Deora, who passed away in November. His elder son, musician, poet and film producer Mukul, will be tying the knot with the lovely Nitasha Thapar this February.

The romance, which came to light during the high-profile wedding of Nitasha’s elder sister Ayesha, to former senior vice-president of Google Nikesh Arora in Italy last year, is said to be a meeting of minds, with both parties interested in the arts. Thapar, the daughter of the prominent business family, ran her own graphic studio until recently.

Hema Deora (below) and Nitasha Thapar at the Sitaram Poddar School in Worli
Hema Deora (below) and Nitasha Thapar at the Sitaram Poddar School in Worli

Nitasha Thapar

What will she do in Mumbai, we enquired of her soon-to-be mother-in-law Hema. “She’s keenly interested in continuing Murli’s philanthropic work,” said Hema. “As every one knows, Murli was tirelessly engaged in helping whomever he came across in whatever way he could.

Nitasha came to the eye camps we’d conducted on his birthday and to the Sitaram Poddar School in Worli, which had been so close to Murli’s heart, and was moved by what she experienced. She is keen to take this on,” said Hema.

Running for Swades
“Five of our Runners from Raigad completed the half marathon” tweeted the ebullient Zarina Screwvala, one half of the team that launched Swades, the not-for-profit organisation that has pledged to transform the lives of 1 million rural Indians every five years. “And a Swades team septuagenarian completed the full!” she said.

The team from Swades Foundation, including Zarina Screwvala, Ronnie Screwvala and Simone Arora, were at the marathon to promote rural empowerment. Rahul Bose, Tara Sharma Saluja and actress Dia Mirza also joined in
The team from Swades Foundation, including Zarina Screwvala, Ronnie Screwvala and Simone Arora, were at the marathon to promote rural empowerment. Rahul Bose, Tara Sharma Saluja and actress Dia Mirza also joined in

The Screwvalas, both of whom have recently turned their attention to social entrepreneurship and philanthropy, had, along with actress Dia Mirza and Swades patron Simone Arora, initiated a walk for the NGO at yesterday’s Standard Chartered Marathon 2015, where contributions would go towards rural empowerment.

And from the looks of it, the venture has been a success. “A super run for great causes” tweeted marathon runner and TV anchor Tara Sharma Saluja, to Mehta. “Big hug and love! Thank you for making my morning!” tweeted Mirza.

Nice!

Celebrating a legend
The weekend saw Nargis Wadia, aka the First Lady of Indian Advertising, celebrate her 80th birthday. A trailblazing graduate of the J J School of Art, Wadia started her own ad agency in the sixties. Called Inter Publicity and launched in the garage of her family’s bungalow, it expanded rapidly to a medium-size boutique agency, with offices in all the major metros, winning dozens of national and international awards.

Nargis Wadia
Nargis Wadia

And besides employing some of the industry’s most creative names like Farrokh Mehta, Nauzer Nowroji, Agnello Dias, Farid Currim, Sohrab Ardeshir, it boasted of some of the country’s most respected corporates as its clients. Godrej’s Cinthol (which incidentally spawned the first ad in which Kabir Bedi and Zeenat Aman appeared together), Arvind Mills, Binny’s, Aristocrat luggage, Nirlon, Nerolac Paints were just some of them.

The celebration, organised by her son Roy, a communications media and social development professional, was held at the Yacht Club and was attended by friends from the many and rich phases of Wadia’s life.’

“Above all, everyone spoke about her ability to withstand significant challenges (including my brother Riyad’s premature death) with fortitude and acceptance, and to emerge with joy and genuine love for the world at large,” said Roy. “Her amazingly youthful appearance reflects a heart full of joy and peace, amid life’s turmoils.”

Turning the tables
It’s been a welcome addition to Sobo’s smorgasbord of F&B delights, and so, the fact that Gauri Devidayal and husband Jay Yousuf’s labour of love, The Table, turned four over the weekend was an occasion for celebrations all around.

Chef Alex Sanchez, Gauri Devidayal, and Jay Yousuf. Pic/Prabhat Shetty
Chef Alex Sanchez, Gauri Devidayal, and Jay Yousuf. Pic/Prabhat Shetty

“It makes me really proud to see not only the trio of Chef Alex Sanchez, my husband Jay Yousuf and me still together after all these years, but also so many of our service, kitchen, office and farm team who have been with us since the day we opened,” said an emotional Devidayal.

The restaurant, famous for its bite-size portions that include mini-burgers and pork sliders, has had many milestones in its four-year journey: Sanchez, an import from New York, has won the Best Chef in India, and the restaurant has walked away with the Best Restaurant prize last year. “As we move on to the next phase of The Table, stick around to find out more soon!” said Devidayal.

The Brat Pack Unplugged
“Look what we came across! Our little Dolly before her icon days started,” commented star wife and mom Sunita Kapoor, about this archival pic from the family album that redefines the meaning of the phrase ‘brat pack’.

From the family album
From the family album

Because there, pictured with her cousins, actors Arjun Kapoor, and Mohit Marwah, along with Akshay Marwah and little sister, producer Rhea Kapoor, is Sunita’s daughter, actress Sonam Kapoor! Talk about Bollywood being one big happy family, and this is ample evidence of the industry’s hottest emerging clan in their chuddy buddy era “Aren’t they too cute?” says Sunita. Indeed. But where was cousin Ranveer Singh?

Obviously, picture abhi baaki hai.

Master of the Universe
Never underestimate the tyranny of peer pressure. An A-list industrialist alighting from his luxury car, was overheard this weekend blithely informing the doorman of a five-star hotel that his ‘newer model is in the workshop’.

That he did so unsolicited, speaks volumes of the necessity, in some circles, to be seen in possession of nothing but the best and latest products in the market. The doorman, of course, just shrugged and waved the Master of the Universe by.

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