Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
We are not quite sure what Rohit Shetty is doing, stuck in the wedge between door and seat, as he exits a book launch event in Juhu on Friday. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
When Kalki's Kiara stole the show
If you've watched actor Kalki Koechlin in the latest ad for a readymade clothing brand, you're bound to have noticed the statuesque and obedient dog with her. Turns out, it is Koechlin's own pet, Kiara. While the Saluki breed is known to be reserved and shy, Kiara turned out to be just the opposite.
"This is the first time I have shot professionally with Kiara. Gautam Kohli, the director of the film, was keen on shooting with her, and I said okay, as long as you can handle her," said Koechlin. She admits being surprised with the ease with which she conducted herself in front of the camera. "Kiara taught me to be natural as well."
For the love of saree swag
A viral trend saw women sharing their saree moments on Twitter last week. Politicians, diplomats and celebrities posted pictures flaunting the six-yard drape. Interestingly, this diarist caught Ron Malka, Israel Ambassador to India, also participating in the Twitter trend. He put a picture with wife Lea, and said, "My beautiful wife Lea loves wearing #sarees and I think she has serious #sareeswag. I am proud to be accompanied by this graceful woman here in India."
Malka tells this diarist that this is not the first time that Lea has draped a saree. On Republic Day, Lea wore a saree for the first time, and Malka thought she looked graceful. Ever since, he gives her the thumbs up when ever she picks one.
He loves cricket, but charity first
While India and England were doing battle on June 30 at Birmingham during in the recent cricket World Cup, Mahesh Patel, an avid cricket fan, die-hard cricket memorabilia collector and a friend to many members of the Indian cricket team, decided to spend his day walking for charity.
Maheshbhai (as he is known to his cricketing mates) undertook a 6.5 mile London Bridges Walk for kidney research along with his fellow Patels at Essex Friday Club—Dilip, Rajubhai, Raj, Mahesh, Hitendra, Mahendra, Rohit, Yogesh and Satish.
Essex-based Maheshbai, 63, had no regrets over missing out on watching a good part of the game on television, and the satisfaction he earned by contributing to an event that ultimately raised 1,291 pounds was immense. Maheshbhai has also participated in English cricket legend Sir Ian Botham's famous charity walks.
Surprisingly, he didn't attend any of the nine games India featured in during the World Cup, the reason being exorbitant tickets rates. Couldn't he have got some complimentary tickets from his large circle of friends in the Indian cricket set-up? Yes, but, as he said, "I believe each player gets two tickets and they have to accommodate their family members, so I didn't ask them." Maheshbhai is endowed with strong legs. He also has a considerate heart.
Tantra as a way of being
After a few short delays, celebrated artist Mahirwan Mamtani's exhibition opens at Jhaveri Contemporary this week. At Home in the Universe features Harminder Judge, who is based in London, while Mamtani is based in Germany. The show includes acrylic paintings on canvas and cut-outs painted on wood. "This exhibition follows on from an exhibition from 2016 called Thinking Tantra," says gallerist Priya Jhaveri.
"It is also part of a series in which we pair two or three artists, often working across geographies and generations, in unexpected dialogue with one another. Mamtani and Judge have never met, and until recently, were unfamiliar with each other's practices. Judge is in his thirties, and Mamtani is now in his eighties."
And the award for best library goes to...
Here's an endeavour that might finally get school academicians to take their libraries seriously. Dalbir Kaur Madan, who runs the OneUp: Library, Bookstudio and Learning Lab in New Delhi—a venture she started with the intent of revitalising library spaces—is launching the Bandana Sen Library Awards this year. Entries are open till September 5, and all CBSE/ICSE schools in the country can participate.
Madan, who has also been a reading consultant to many school libraries in Mumbai, told this diarist that the award was a tribute to librarian Bandana Sen, who passed away last year. "I wanted to celebrate Bandana's work, and share it with [as] many people [as possible]. At the same time, I felt there was a need for us to celebrate library spaces, and encourage reading. After all, reading is at the heart of every education programme," says Madan. With advisors like writers Paro Anand and Usha Pandit, the award will set a benchmark for what reading spaces should aspire to be like.
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