Mumbai Diary page: Saturday scene

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

Watch your back, Mr CM
Veterans always have some advice for the juniors. While wishing CM Devendra Fadnavis all the best at a public event in the city recently, former CM Sushilkumar Shinde offered the young leader a valuable tip, which he said had helped him survive fierce politics for 45 years, which, incidentally is more than Fadnavis’ age.

Sushilkumar Shinde (l) passed on his pearls of wisdom to the Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis recently
Sushilkumar Shinde (l) passed on his pearls of wisdom to the Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis recently

“It is always important to watch your back when you are active in politics. I had my eyes and ears to what was happening behind me, and hence nobody could unsettle me,” said the Congress leader. Fadnavis, who too has intra-party rivals, lapped up words of wisdom instantly even when it came from a leader of the opposition party. “I will follow your advice very seriously,” said Fadnavis amidst huge applause from the audience.

Go, Science
Pleazzzzzzzantly surprised. That is what we would say about the uptick in awareness and promotion of National Science Day which falls today, Saturday, February 28. Of course, it still has a very long way to go compared to other slickly marketed days but scientists they’re a-puttin’ down those test tubes, shrugging off those lab coats and running hard, to catch up.

We have had quite a few announcements about how the city is going to mark National Science Day. One of those is that the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) Chembur is commemorating this year’s National Science Day as a, ‘Physics Utsav-2015’, within its campus going on till March 2.

The programme comprises lectures by eminent scientists, films and visits to the research facilities, including Dhruva reactor, ion accelerator (FOTIA) and robotics (DRHR) along with exhibition of posters and models. Science nerds, Bhabha’s the word.

Doing some plane talking
When this diaryist visited the sealed Kingfisher House near the Western Express Highway (WEH) at Vile Parle, it was quiet, no employees or dharnas, only the roar of the traffic near the building. The building had been sealed with banners from State Bank of India (SBI) saying so.

The State Bank of India seals the Kingfisher Airlines office at Vile Parle near the domestic airport in Mumbai. Pic/PTI
The State Bank of India seals the Kingfisher Airlines office at Vile Parle near the domestic airport in Mumbai. Pic/PTI

A posse of policemen sat guarding the building. Notices there say Vijay Mallya’s long-grounded Kingfisher Airlines owes more than 17 banks loans of around R 6,800 crore. The sealing is all part of the bank consortium led by SBI to recover the amount. Yet, where there is silence, there are whispers. The sealing has lead rumour mills to churn.

The policemen there were telling passers by that an SBI ATM will come up soon, and that the building will be razed to make way for the same with some even saying a bank may open there. Truth? Or, merely timepass? Who knows? All we know is that conjecture season is in full swing, never mind about the king.

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