Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier

Oct 13, 2016, 09:48 IST | Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier

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

Pic/Sneha Kharabe

Point and shoot
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, who is in the news for having said the UPA regime carried out no surgical strikes like they claim, took time out from controversy to visit a technology and material sciences exhibition in the city yesterday. 

Sticking it out for the nation
At a time when India stands divided on issues of nationalism, any initiative with an intent to unite is welcome.

RS Rathore
RS Rathore

And Mumbai Hockey Association’s general secretary Ram Singh Rathore’s nationwide blood donation drive on the eve of the 350th birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh promises one such platform.

Dhanraj Pillay
Dhanraj Pillay

The drive, being organised from December 1, 2016 to January 5, 2017, will be supported by celebs like hockey legend Dhanraj Pillay, former Mumbai police commissioner and MP Satyapal Singh, among others. It will be held across 250 centres across India and promises over 35,000 contributors. Blood is thicker than water, and blood relations always precious.

The hills are alive with literature
It’s the season of litfests, and we are not talking about the city’s own festival, which is still a month away. Words are echoing, as you read this diary entry, in the picturesque hills of Uttarakhand at the Kumaoni Literary Festival.

Khushwant Singh
Khushwant Singh

And if you think you’ve missed the chance for a literary getaway, we have good news. Starting tomorrow in the scenic little town of Kasauli in Himachal Pradesh is the fifth edition of the Khushwant Singh Literary Festival. “This year’s theme is Breaking Barriers and to speak about it we have people who have done just that,” Rahul Singh, the legendary author’s son, journalist and brain behind the festival, told us.

With its impressive line-up like Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Shyam Benegal, Rahul Pandita and Abhinav Bindra, one can also expect some fireworks as Kanhaiya Kumar speaks on nationalism. The inauguration of the trail Khushwant Singh walked down from Kasauli to Kalka is another highlight. That trail is about to become a busy one, we are sure.

Setting up home or set?
Director Sanjay Leela Bhansali was spotted at a Lower Parel lifestyle store on Wednesday afternoon indulging in some focussed shopping. It was mostly decor — throw cushions and wall hangings — that he was interested in.

Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Sanjay Leela Bhansali

Accompanied by a staff of two, Bhansali, dressed in a billowy white kurta-pyjama, bought with the precision of a shooter, aiming for exactly the products he wanted. While the acquisitions were being loaded into cartons and ferried to his Merc, he settled the bill, still distracted by a black powder-dusted chandelier, just the kind you'd expect to find in one of his films.

All for home, or some for the film set, we wonder. “Do I get a concession?” he asked. “My sister who shops here once a year always gets it, and I, who come every other month, don’t,” he smiled. He had once famously told a newspaper, “When I am not being watched, I am a loud Gujarati.” Add to that, this one, we say: “When I am bargaining, I am a pucca Gujarati.”

Dussera for men only
As Mumbai celebrated Ram’s felling of Raavan, a clutch of activists from Mumbai’s Vaastav Foundation, an organization that fights for men’s rights (yes, that’s right), decided to slay their very own demon(ess). Vaastav created an effigy of Raavan’s sister Shurapanakha at an Andheri venue, and cut off her nose in a symbolic gesture.

Shurapanakha is ready for the cruelest cut of all
Shurapanakha is ready for the cruelest cut of all

This blast from the mythological past, Vaastav said, was a gesture against the misuse of laws and gender biased laws that discriminate against men. It is, “[our] vehement opposition to lying, scheming, falsely accusing women,” said Vaastav founder Amit Deshpande. Shurapanakha, you can’t breathe easy now. In fact, you can’t breathe at all.

Cooking up a Greek storm
MasterChef Australia’s latest season wound up a while ago and if you’re already missing it, here’s a sneak peek at what the show’s beloved judge George Calombaris (in pic) is up to. Ever aware of his roots, the chef has invited some of his Greek counterparts from Michelin-starred restaurants in the country to his acclaimed restaurant in Melbourne, The Press Club.

Shurapanakha is ready for the cruelest cut of all

The OMG (Oh My Greek) Week kicks off on November 22 with an exciting array of events celebrating both modern and ancient Greek food. So, if you happen to be in Aussie land around that time, here’s your chance to witness the cuisine in all its glory. Of course, we also know people who only travel for food. Just saying.

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