Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Hanging with the guards
Actor Kalki Koechlin shares a moment with security after playing at the nets at a corporate cricket partnership at Churchgate on Sunday. Pic/Bipin Kokate
Behind the case lies a story
"Hyderabad's cops were the most helpful, while Delhi's were the least," admitted Arita Sarkar in response to a question from the audience about the challenges she had faced while researching her book, Kidnapped. That former Mumbai Police Commissioner AN Roy was one of the chief guests at the release of the hard-hitting title by mid-day's principal correspondent at a Bandra bookstore over the weekend, didn't deter her from plumbing for the khaki men from Hyderabad.
Former Mumbai Police Commissioner AN Roy, actor Rasika Dugal with mid-day journalist Arita Sarkar. Pic/Atul Kamble
Roy smiled on, and took on a few questions as well, where he shared his experience with the politician-kidnapper nexus and the onus on the police to be humane with the parents. Actor Rasika Dugal, fresh off the success of Delhi Crime and Humourously Yours was popular with the audience, as she read out select excerpts, giving those present a glimpse into stories of despair. "It's the storytelling that matters," said Roy, highlighting the mark of a well-researched book as this one.
Mom to the rescue
Remember when you were a teenager and your mom threatened to join some social media platform to embarrass you? Well, looks like Smriti Irani's daughter is getting a dose of that at the age of 15.
India's Union Minister for Textiles recently uploaded a picture of her daughter. When some boys in her school made fun of the picture, Irani deleted the picture at her teen's behest.
But the next day, momma bear uploaded the same picture of her daughter with a stern message about bullying, reasoning that she realised deleting her previous post supported bullying. While we applaud her anti-bullying stance, the fact that she has listed her daughter's achievements and chose to name the bully's last name, distracts from the point she is trying to make. Well, here's wishing her daughter luck on social media.
A luxury for students
Only those who have moved to Mumbai to pursue higher studies know the dismal infrastructure the city offers to its student population. From ramshackle, 7 pm-deadline hostels that can be counted on the fingers of one hand to paying guest accommodations with strange rules like "You can only make milk and Maggi", the real estate behemoth of Mumbai has a special set of problems for the broke student. So, when Shantam and Aman Mehra went overseas to study, the residence facilities they lived in there left them amazed.
Once they returned home, they drew from their father's experience in real estate to launch Tribe, a student accommodation in Pune, which is now expanding to Vile Parle as their first all-girls facility. "Living in Mumbai is hard and what is harder is finding a decent place to live... With 24 million students travelling outside of their homes in India itself to study and no accommodation of good quality, we are treading on egg shells as far as encouraging students goes," Shantam told this diarist, speaking about the luxury accommodation, designed to look like a Greek town, done up in shades of blue and white. While the facilities (24-hour medical aid, security, shuttle service, etc) will bring a lot of relief to parents, we aren't sure of the difference it would make to the lives of those who arrive in the city on a budget.
Because music is for all
While the city witnessed a slew of gigs on the occassion of World Music Day on June 21, an initiative by a kids' television channel roped in well-known singers and composers to take the magic of music to the underprivileged children of an NGO.
Palak Muchhal with her djembe
Each musicians chose an instrument from their prized collection and autographed it before giving it away for the initiative. From AR Rahman's keytar to Sonu Nigam's tabla set, Shaan's guitar, Baadshah and Amaal Malik's ukuleles, Sunidhi Chauhan's violin and Palak Muchhal's djembe — the channel collected quite a diverse range of instruments to help children explore their passion for music.
Art for the next generation
Last July, Chemould Prescott Road presented the first edition of Modus Operandi — an exhibition targeting young collectors with a price point ranging from `20,000 to 2.5 lakh. It showcased the works of 29 contemporary artists.
And the gallery just announced that the second edition of the month-long event is set to return on July 18 with a roster of acclaimed artists including Atul and Anju Dodiya, Jitish Kallat, Dhruvi Acharya and Mithu Sen. In this edition, the gallery artists will unpack their studios and curate a section of their practice within the gallery space. Here's to more galleries opening up their spaces to young entrants in the art-collecting world.
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