Mumbai Diary: Saturday Dossier

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

Tweet time with Tendulkar
On Friday for exactly an hour, cricket fans on Twitter had an unbelievable experience, witnessing Sachin Tendulkar live-tweeting answers to their questions on the hashtag #AskSRT. The first question answered was about his favourite cuisine and his answer was that he loves his mom’s cooking. He also remarked that his own Baingan Bharta is something to try out.

Pic/Bipin Kokate

(Now wouldn’t we all love to have some of that?) Questions chimed in from friends and past cricketers such as Anil Kumble, Michael Vaughan, and sports journalist Piers Morgan. Shiva Thapa, Indian boxer, asked a question about facing pressure in light of his own preparation for the upcoming Rio Olympics. Sachin answered with warm, encouraging words, advising him to focus on the process and the preparation.

“The results will come…we are with you.” The question that took Sachin by surprise was: “When was the last time you did something for the first time?” He replied saying that this way of connecting with fans was something he’d never done before.

He answered questions about his love for tennis (he prefers Djokovic over Wawrinka), about memories such as the special Wankhede final of the 2011 World Cup and about Cricket All-Stars that he believes has greatly benefited the sport in the US.

Wait up...there’s more coming

Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

Bigg Boss contestants Nora Fatehi (centre) and Mandana Karimi (right) reunited at Ritika Bharwani’s store in Bandra recently.

Our own feral beast
On Sunday, April 10, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge begin a four-day India tour, landing in Mumbai first. At the press briefing yesterday at the British Council in Lower Parel, the media was apprised on the schedule and how they would be able to cover the visit.

The spokesperson got a glimpse of how feral (an unforgettable word bestowed upon the British media by a beleaguered Tony Blair in his lowest ebb) the Indian press pack can be, when the media started asking him about what exactly Kate would be wearing on her visit.

“Any outfits by Indian designers?” he was asked. “We can’t say, this always evokes a lot of interest but we can’t say,” said the Briton. “Will she be wearing a sari?” asked another journalist. The answer was, “We can’t comment specifically but the Duchess does like to pay a tribute to the local people when she’s there, but we can’t say.” Yet the press persisted. “When can you tell us if she will wear a sari?” was the next question.

The answer was, “You will know when you see her, wearing one,” to laughter all across. Well, so very stiff upper lip, really. But let us warn these Brits… Picture abhi bakhi hai. And while on the topic of the royal visit, this diarist also stumbled upon an amusing set of tweets that began to surface on social media last evening.

From Karan Johar to Arjun Kapoor and Alia Bhatt (at the time of going to press), each of these celebs had posted identical tweets like: ‘Can’t wait for the Royal Gala Dinner’! So much for streamlining processes, Brit style!

Move it like Dwayne Bravo

Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

Fresh off his heroics at the T2O World Cup, Dwayne Bravo, shakes a leg along with Amit Tiwari at the opening of the 9th IPL edition.

The eternally youthful Anil Kapoor has turned out to be quite an entrepreneur. The actor will be a part of a new venture called, which is an international video social network that allows artistes, brands and the like to connect with fans, specialising in video challenges.

With direct connectivity, the platform also facilitates artistes to audition online, thus making it a medium to scout talent. More details about this as well as their expansion plans will be revealed on Monday.

Raqesh Bapat, Surbhi Jyoti, Asha Negi, Riddhi Dogra and Rithvik Dhanjani at the premiere of their film held at INOX Malad
(Left-right) Raqesh Bapat, Surbhi Jyoti, Asha Negi, Riddhi Dogra and Rithvik Dhanjani at the premiere of their film held at INOX Malad

Political thriller in January 2017
This diarist has always applauded the high quality of fiction and non-fiction writing from our neighbours across the border.

Benazir Bhutto and Sabyn Javeri
Benazir Bhutto and Sabyn Javeri

The most recent to join this talented club is Sabyn Javeri who comes with an impressive list of literary exploits including being shortlisted for the Tibor Jones Award. Come January 2017, and she will release a thrill-a-page political saga called Nobody Killer Her (HarperCollins).

Structured like a courtroom drama, it begins with the assassination of a popular and strong-willed woman leader. A source revealed to us that the book is a loose fictionalization of the life of none other than late Prime Minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto. What with the heady mix of politics and family, this should be one helluva page-turner.

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