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Mumbai Diary page: Tuesday Tales

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

A mug’s game, indeed
We may be used to hearing politicians call each other “donkey” and even in this age of political correctness, that is probably at a mild level of name-calling. Well, here’s someone stepping up to remind us that those who don’t vote are the real donkeys (with our apologies to that much-maligned beast).

Voting is the smart thing to do, says the mug. Pic/Datta Kumbhar
Voting is the smart thing to do, says the mug. Pic/Datta Kumbhar

Sundeep Sharma, who describes himself as a “social entrepreneur and advisor”, has pressed into service six multi-utility vehicles (MUVs), with banners depicting the donkey and the words “I don’t vote” in English, Hindi and Marathi.

The MUVs will go around in the lanes and by-lanes of the city till April 23, to motivate people to vote, says Sharma, adding, “It is time that we say the right thing and not the politically right thing. There should be some kind of social boycott of people who don’t vote.”

Sharma’s associate in this project, Hitesh Bilakhia, says, “I feel more voters will surely elect better Parliamentary representatives.” To this end, they have sent out promotional mugs sporting their credo. We shall definitely raise a toast with tea to their public-spirited endeavour!

The name game
In the Bharatiya Janata Party’s newspaper ads announcing the rally in the city yesterday, we could not help noticing that one of the state’s most famous surnames Thackeray has been misspelt. In both Uddhav and Aditya’s case, their surname has been spelt as “Thackrye”. Oops...

Lettuce veg out
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has chosen Bollywood looker Richa Chadda for their Earth Day ad campaign this year. Advocating vegetarianism, Chadda wears nothing but lettuce leaves — albeit not a la fig-leaf.

Richa Chadda
Richa Chadda

Oh and a bit of purple cabbage for relief. Chadda certainly looks, if we may say so, good enough to eat, although we can’t help noting that lettuce is a tad expensive. Cabbage leaves would have done, too. Then we would have had our very own cabbage patch doll, so to speak.

Telling silence
Even during the best of times, most members of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) try to keep the media at arm’s length.

(It’s a different matter that so-called ‘sources’ let out bits and pieces of information to suit their discretion!) And when adversity knocks at the door of the Board, media personnel find it that much harder, to glean any sort of information from members.

One of the BCCI vice presidents, Rajiv Shukla, however is an exception, and he generally obliges waiting media crews with a few soundbites, although most of the time they amount to sweet nothings!

Therefore, the moment he emerged from the Emergent Meeting of the all-important Working Committee of the Board at the Cricket Centre, reporters and cameramen alike pounced on him for that prized bite.

Shukla however, was in no mood to oblige, and even though one of the reporters tried coaxing him to give the tribe their “rozi roti”, Shukla hurriedly made his way into his car and drove off to the Congress rally. A sign of the times, should we say?

Contributed by: Dhananjay Roy, Hemal Ashar, Vidya Heble

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