In the interest of fairness

Not that we are in any way an authority on who killed poor Sunanda Tharoor or if anyone was even present in that hotel room, but according to a friend of hers, the injury marks on her body were most likely caused by someone trying to protect themselves from her blows.

“She had a temper and was given to resorting to physical violence to vent her anger and frustration,” said the friend. “Shashi often had to restrain her at these moments by holding her arms firmly when she pummelled him.” “Whatever one might say of him being a philanderer or unfaithful,” said the friend, “no one who knew the couple had ever heard of him being violent towards his wife,” we were told.

Sunanda and Shashi Tharoor
Sunanda and Shashi Tharoor

“The bruise marks on her body were most likely caused by someone in self-defence.” As we said, in no way should this be seen as either an indictment or an absolvement of anyone. Just an insight which a close friend of Sunanda shared, and which, in the interest of fairness, we are passing on.

That divine glow
“It could have just been the early morning sunlight,” laughed Queenie Singh, when we complimented her about the glowing complexion seen in this picture.

Rhea Pillai and Queenie Singh
Rhea Pillai and Queenie Singh

“It was around 6.30 am and Rhea and I were at the MMRDA grounds for Sri Sri Ravi Shankarji’s Rudra Pooja,” said the high-profile jewellery designer, uncharacteristically dressed in ethnic threads.

Both Singh and Pillai, after all, are known to follow a very healthy regimen of diet and exercise. But of course, it could be just their guru’s aura, which made the girls glow.

Popping up everywhere
Mumbai has had its fair share of pop-up restaurants recently with the likes of Thalassa, Gaggan, guppy and Ritu Dalmia’s Diva pop-up last year.

Dino Morea
Dino Morea

Now, word comes in that this weekend, the city will see a new pop-up night club open its doors for one night only. We hear the event has been conceptualised by Vishal Shetty (the man behind Fire n Ice, the go-to place for city hipsters more than a decade ago) along with actor and restaurateur Dino Morea.

Though they have managed to keep most details under wraps so far, our source informs us that the event, which has been described as the ‘Pop-up of clubbing experiences’ will be hosted at the Four Seasons on January 17, and will have an exclusive guest list which is sure to see only the hot-and-happening of Sobo and Nobo meet and meld mid-town. A pop-up night club? Isn’t that just another name for a party?

Just saying...

Good art, great food
A slew of city worthies gathered at Vickram Sethi’s three-storeyed gallery, the Institute of Contemporary Indian Art at Kala Ghoda on Sunday for brunch, where amidst a striking collection of art, (Sethi’s eye is legendary) guests were treated to some choice Punjabi delicacies (no, that’s not a contradiction of terms) lovingly prepared by Vickram’s wife Neelam.

Vickram Sethi A N Roy with wife Mona Ayaz Memon
(From left) Vickram Sethi, A N Roy with wife Mona, and Ayaz Memon

And relishing the Makki di roti, sarson da saag, dahi ki sabzi, pyaz and muttar sabji, tindi ki bhaji and red carrot kanji, amongst other drool-worthy preparations, we spotted Farzana Contractor, who had dropped by at the next-door Jehangir Art gallery to see the Uddhav Thackeray exhibition, where she said Sachin Tendulkar had been present.

Our friend and former colleague Ayaz Memon spoke about his newest passion, yoga, which he practices religiously and which has done wonders for his health. Harsh and Mala Goenka were overheard complimenting the hosts about the food. Mumbai’s two dapper senior IPS officers, A N Roy and Javed Ahmed, who had served together during some of Mumbai’s most trying times, made a late arrival with their lovely wives Mona and Shabnam.

The former’s brother Amitabh Kant, secretary, Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, is very much the man of the moment with his successful ‘Make In India’ initiative. Singer Suchitra Krishnamoorthi spoke about the changing face of Lokhandwala, where she stays, and her teenage daughter who appears to have inherited her parent’s many talents.

Other late arrivals were Business Standard’s Ashok Advani, publisher of Business India, and the graceful Lakshmi Nair whose family owns the Leela hotel chain, who must be inundated with questions about the Pushkar case, given that the tragedy has occurred at her hotel in Delhi.

All in all, a pleasant Sunday afternoon, surrounded with some of the best things of life: lovingly prepared freshly cooked vegetables straight from the farm, great art and the company of old friends!

We like!

Nrityagram's New Yorker triumph
It’s known as the purveyor of highbrow criticism and everyone knows that a mention in it is a very big thing indeed. Which is why dance critic Joan B Acocella’s article ‘Nrityagram: Under My Skin’ in the recent issue of the New Yorker, that bastion of excellent writing and considered opinion on the late Protima Bedi’s Odissi dance academy, is being regarded with excitement amongst Indian dance aficionados.

Odissi dancer Protima Bedi
Odissi dancer Protima Bedi

‘Nrityagram, which is probably the Indian dance company most beloved by American audiences right now (maybe ever), will be back in New York tonight, for two shows,’ the article begins, and goes on to shower much praise on the ensemble.

For those who knew how hard Bedi had to toil to get her dream of an Odissi Gurukul on its feet, her uphill struggle, and her tragic early death before she saw it achieve its glory, this comes as a poignant but welcome tribute. Somewhere from the great stage in the sky, the danseuse- founder of Nrityagram must be smiling, especially at Acocella’s, ‘Much of India’s classical art, including its classical dance, is unambiguously erotic.”
Nice!

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