Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Anand Patwardhan and Fidel Castro
Anand Patwardhan and Fidel Castro

Bombay frames for Fidel Castro
It was in 1986 when documentary filmmaker Anand Patwardhan had travelled to Cuba for an international film festival that he met Fidel Castro.

Bombay Our City, Patwardhan’s documentary on the daily battle for survival that the megapolis’s slumdwellers go through, caught Castro’s eye, who told the filmmaker that he loved it. The two men shook hands and spoke a few words, and it became an unforgettable memory.

“Those were heady days. Now he, like Che, have passed into legend — leaders of a tiny island of hope that defied America,” were Patwardhan’s poetic words on the passing away of the 90-year-old leader, who brought revolution to Cuba.

Petting cause
Alia Bhatt has been receiving rave reviews for her rock-solid performance in Dear Zindagi, from co-star King Khan to Barkha Dutt. But even as the spunky, talented actress was busy promoting her film prior to its release, the animal-lover that she is, Bhatt tweeted about an adoptathon that was to be held in a Bandra school over the weekend.

In a fervent appeal, she egged her followers on social media to drop by and take a four-legged friend home. She has a pet cat, Pikka, named after Pokemon’s Pikachu. She often tweets cutesy photos sharing moments with her furry feline. We hope that the starry shout-out helped find many more takers for felines and canines at the weekend cause.

Style and substance


Pic/Sneha Kharabe

Entrepreneur and socialite Maureen Wadia (right) with Khorshed T Udwadia, wife of the leading city-based surgeon Tehemton Udwadia, at the inauguration of a minimal access surgery centre in Worli over the weekend.

Maria’s Pune tryst
Guess who’s whipping up a culinary storm in Pune? Popular anchor and celebrity chef Maria Goretti was in the city recently for an event organised by a luxury car company.

Maria Goretti
Maria Goretti

She uploaded photos of herself in a dapper-looking chef’s coat by Payal Singhal on Instagram, saying , “...seared, smeared, smiled a lot. I could easily get addicted to days like this. And I really don’t mind it.” We’re sure the event’s participants didn’t mind the treat either.

Mission Partition
Gurinder Chadha, the lady who bent it like Beckham, is in India to do what she does best. The British filmmaker is shooting for a part of BBC’s upcoming season on Partition.

Gurinder Chadha interviews Dalrymple
Gurinder Chadha interviews Dalrymple

Chadha recently shot an interview with author William Dalrymple, whom she fittingly called ‘our very own Gora Desi.’ She was all praise for Dalrymple’s knowledge and love for South Asian history that ‘just pours out of him.’ We are looking forward to watching this creative endeavour.

Aditi’s notes on laughter
Cracking a joke is no cakewalk. One has to be nothing short of a skilful storyteller, knowing where to pause, create suspense and deliver the punchline in the most effective way.

Add to it the fact that a stand-up comedian has to come up with his own jokes — or as in this case, her own jokes. Aditi Mittal, who has been in the business of making others laugh for quite some time now, thinks it’s time she shared the ropes of her trade with other aspiring funnymen.

The comedienne will be conducting a two-day workshop — A Crash (And Burn) Course as she prefers to call it — in the city mid-December on the art, craft and logistics of stand-up comedy. For someone who never shies away from laughing at herself, we are sure the workshop is going to be a gig in itself.

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