Is SRK looking at using his immense clout and unassailable perch, to collaborate with the government of Maharashtra on a new film city in Mumbai?
According to our sources, this and other such initiatives made up the star's conversation, when he joined CM Devendra Fadnavis, philanthropist Rajshree Birla, and industrialist Adi Godrej before he went up on stage last week to release Shaina NC's Movers and Makers, her tome on the Make In India initiative.
Devendra Fadnavis, Shaina NC and Shah Rukh Khan
"The others drank tea, while SRK sipped on black coffee and chatted merrily with Shaina and her assembled chief guests, before the book's release," said the source. SRK as the champion of a world-class film city? It's an idea whose time has come for sure.
Of luxe cars and jewels
Nice to see the juxtaposition of luxury cars and bespoke jewels, especially when it's the brainchild of two dynamic women. This weekend will witness a collector's evening when jewellery designer Poonam Soni, participates in a retrospective of some of her most popular collections, shown along with a range of stunning automobiles from the repertoire of car maker BMW.
Pooja Choudhry, Poonam Soni and Laxman Shreshtha
The retrospective will show pieces from Soni's collections. There will also be a glimpse of her latest line of rare diamonds and precious stones. "Poonam Soni is a name synonymous with bespoke luxury and precision," said Pooja Choudhry, MD, BMW Infinity Cars. Luxury cars, bespoke jewels and dynamic women? Vroom Vroom.
Not for art's sake?
Oh dear. Here's another fiery revelation to be tossed into what's looking like the city's ultimate bonfire of the vanities. Even as the beleaguered wife of this business tycoon fights to put off many simultaneous fires in her life, sources say that her estranged husband, who is trying his best to indict her legally, has stumbled upon one more instance of her alleged chicanery.
Apparently the ardent art collector had a unique way of rounding off her purchases even as she put away a little for a rainy day according to the gent. If an artwork was purchased by the lady for an amount of say R50 lakh and billed to his company, her understanding with the gallery would be that she would keep a percentage of that amount. That way according to him, the gallery was happy, the artist was happy, and his wife was certainly happy. Art for art's sake? That's what the fuming husband wants to know.
Indians in America
It's been something of an India Week on both sides of America. Over the weekend, the annual gala dinner for the American India Foundation, the NGO started by Bill Clinton in response to the Gujarat earthquake, saw actress and cook book writer, the lovely Madhur Jaffrey, who is an ambassador for the event, design the gala's menu, and speak about her latest book, Vegetarian India: A journey through the best of Indian home cooking, at the pre-gala event.
Madhur Jaffrey and Zakir Hussain
"Both she and her husband attended, and she talked about why she supports our cause, and also her new book, and how she researched it, and her thirst for more knowledge on India and its food," said uber venture capitalist Ash Lilani, who is on the board of the American India Foundation and a long-time bridge between both countries.
Meanwhile, tabla maestro Zakir Hussain joined the likes of Chucho Valdés on piano, and Paquito D'Rivera on clarinet, and West African guitarist Lionel Loueke, when they performed on the south lawn of the White House on Friday night to celebrate International Jazz Day — presented by UNESCO, and only the third event of its kind after Jimmy Carter (in 1978) and Bill Clinton (in 1993). Indians in America. You just can't keep 'em down.
He's been something of a household name for food lovers for decades. And now, our foodie sources say that Chef Hemant Oberoi, who had stepped down last year as corporate chef of a five-star hotel group's luxury division, has some big new plans up his sleeve.
"He's working on a restaurant in Singapore," we were informed. "And what's best of all is its name." And what is that? "He's going to call it Hemant." Nice!