It's official: Coldplay to grace Mumbai

Updated: Sep 12, 2016, 15:33 IST | Malavika Sangghvi |

The rumours have been doing the rounds for many months and every teenybopper and their hipster parent has been asking the same questions: will it happen and when will it happen?

Aamir Khan, Deepika Padukone, AR Rahman and Chris Martin
Aamir Khan, Deepika Padukone, AR Rahman and Chris Martin

The rumours have been doing the rounds for many months and every teenybopper and their hipster parent has been asking the same questions: will it happen and when will it happen? Social media is rife with unofficial event pages that claim to confirm that Chris Martin and Coldplay will finally (after many hush-hush visits to India) perform in Mumbai this November.

Narendra Modi, Devendra Fadnavis, Jay Z and Amitabh Bachchan
Narendra Modi, Devendra Fadnavis, Jay Z and Amitabh Bachchan

Our well-connected source calls in to give us all the real dope. “Yes Coldplay is set to perform in Mumbai on November 19 at the MMRDA and the show is being put together by the Global Citizen Festival run by Chris Martin,” he says adding, “The official tickets will go live on Book My Show on September 12 next week and prices start from Rs 25,000 to the highest category tickets at Rs 5 lakh a ticket.

Also Read: Coldplay singer Chris Martin gives an impromptu performance in Delhi

The event is a charit-able one and the intention behind the concert is to support a noble cause, of removing extreme poverty from the entire world by 2030. The event will also feature Jay Z, Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, AR Rahman Deepika Padukone etc., and the Honourable PM, CM, international dignitaries and other celebrities.”

So there you have it, all the dope on the Coldplay Mumbai gig first on this page. Now lets wait for the official announce-ment next week. And when you get it, remember we told you first.

A canvas between friends
The last time we heard about a similar incident it had ended in a godawful skirmish and an unresolved feud. We are referring to the time when renowned author VS Naipaul had hit the roof, when it was brought to his notice that one of the autographed copies of his book, which he had fondly presented to his then dear friend author Paul Theroux, had ended up in a pawn shop!

Krishen Khanna, Sunil Sethi, Hugo Weihe, Roshni Vadehra and Shalini Sethi
Krishen Khanna, Sunil Sethi, Hugo Weihe, Roshni Vadehra and Shalini Sethi

This time things are far more civilized. Last week, when Delhi-based artist Krishen Khanna put on auction in Saffronart’s big autumn sale, a canvas by his friend and fellow artist Akbar Padamsee, measuring 4 ft x 12 ft, titled ‘Greek Landscape,’ there appeared to be no ruffled feathers.

Khanna who is 92 and full of zest, had bought it for Rs 1,000 in 1960 and says he is selling it, because so large a piece had become impossible to maintain. And the estimated price of the sale? R7 to R9 crore! ( Update: at the time of going to press we learnt that the Padamsee sold for more than the estimated cost, or rather way above it, at Rs 19.19 cr!)

“You can see a moving video of 89-year-old Akbar Padamsee on a wheelchair coming face to face with his painting after so many years on the auction house’s website,” says Sunil Sethi, journalist and art aficionado adding, “I sincerely hope some generous public-spirited Indian benefactor (but do they exist?) buys it so that this marvelous work becomes accessible to art lovers.”

Incubator of greatness
Those who toil sincerely need not despair as sooner or later they always receive their due recognition. Such is the case of Mrs Khorshed Bhathena, the city’s iconic diminutive swimming instructress, who not only received a visit recently from her former student, the Olympic Gold medalist Michael Klim (as first reported in this paper), but another equally distinguished protégé, Nadir Godrej Managing Director of Godrej Industries, also singled her out for praise.

Khorshed Bhathena and Nadir Godrej
Khorshed Bhathena and Nadir Godrej

“Mrs Bhathena and her husband were both swimming coaches who taught many people over the years. She sent me an article from mid-day that mentioned that Michael Klim and his elder sister Anna Eagle came to visit her,” said Godrej adding, “She had taught all three of my sons swimming and her husband had taught me the crawl.”

As for the granddame of Mumbai’s swimming pools, this moment in the spotlight is only a temporary hiccup in a career of unsung rigor and passion. Just this morning we saw her at one of Mumbai’s tony clubs, urging yet another batch of students to how to stroke their arms, wiggle their feet and breathe through their noses.

Another Olympian or corporate leader in the making? Who knows?

Pulling his leg
We have reproduced this happy picture of Arnab Goswami with his former colleague Bhaskar Das, not because it captures a rare moment when two media professionals who work for rival conglom-erates share a moment of genuine bonhomie, but for that other rare occurrence: a view of the larger than life news anchor’s hitherto rarely seen legs.

Bhaskar Das and Arnab Goswami
Bhaskar Das and Arnab Goswami

And yes, for those who thought that the sum total of Goswami was only a jabbing accusatory finger and a screaming, fire breathing mouth — here’s ample proof that there’s more to him than seen on the TV screen. Alas, no evidence from this snap, if the garrulous Goswami possesses a pair of feet and if he does - if they are made of the normal material - or of some other stuff -like clay though.

Spinning colourful tales
“I have been illustrating children’s magazines and books since the age of 16,” says our friend, the author illustrator and acerbic commentator on current affairs, Gautam Benegal, about his newest book, Tales From Bengal (Om Publishers). It received a Certificate of Merit from The Federation of Indian Publishers for excellence in book production.

Gautam Benegal
Gautam Benegal

‘Tuntunir Boi’ or ‘Tuntuni’s book’ is a compilation of folk tales by Upendrakishore Ray Chaudhuri who also happened to be Satyajit Ray’s grandfather. “They are oral narratives that have been passed down the generations from women of the family to their children and most of these reflect the socio-economic concerns of rural society, much as folk tales do all over the world,” he says.

“Nabanita Dev Sen the renowned poet and my professor from Jadavpur University days has written a beautiful and moving foreword to Tales From Bengal,” he says. As for its readers: “We hope these timeless tales find their way into the hearts of children worldwide, the same way they have done over the generations to so many children growing up in the villages of Bengal.”

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