Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier

Jun 30, 2016, 09:30 IST | Team MiD DAY

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

DP, oh DP!
It was a cozy but vocal gathering that showed up for a private presentation at the Urban Research and Design Institute (UDRI) on a rainy Tuesday in Kala Ghoda.

Gerson da Cunha
Gerson da Cunha

The issue was pretty grave — a deconstruction of the draft Development Plan 2034 — but it would have been tough to figure that out as Mumbai’s activists, urban planners and social workers made many a hearty comment.

“Bandstand ka band bajaya”, “Creative calculations by the BMC”, NDZ as ‘New’ Development Zone and other such wisecracks offered some respite to what is being described as a faulty development draft. However, we always look out for the wise, and listening somberly and attentively on the front row was veteran actor, activist and writer, Gerson da Cunha.

At the end of the presentation, da Cunha, in wizard-like fashion said that there were lessons to be learnt from Brexit, which was fuelled by populist ideas. “At the moment, when we are a few months away from municipal elections, we have to find what will stand in court and gauge popular outrage; we have to stoke this outrage before political elections or things won’t change,” he said. He then delivered the words, “A builder DP” on three occasions, and with that we had a brief vision of the stage allure of da Cunha.

Jamie’s coming to town!
If you’ve salivated watching Jamie Oliver make pizzas on television, you can finally dig into the fresh, hand-stretched wonders right in Mumbai. We hear the blue-eyed celebrity chef is set to launch Jamie’s Pizzeria by Jamie Oliver here by mid-July.

While it’s already made in-roads in Delhi, along with his other restaurant, Jamie’s Italian, the outpost in Mumbai is part of the UK chef’s India expansion plans for the popular restaurant chain, one of the fastest growing restaurant groups in his home country.

Considering the chef has championed the food revolution campaign and showed his fans how to enjoy innovative and sustainable fare, we can’t wait to check out what’s baking in the ovens at this soon-to-open pizzeria.

Calling Marathi children’s book writers
Tomorrow might be the last day for submissions, but it is still encouraging news for authors and illustrators of children’s books.

The Parag Initiative of Tata Trusts has announced the Big Little Book Award along with a city literary fest that will recognise and honour contributions by Indian authors and illustrators of children’s literature. This year, Marathi is the chosen language from which entries will be screened for the award.

Swaha Sahoo, who leads the Parag Initiative, says the aim is to spread the joy of reading. “The awards are an attempt to acknowledge original and sensitive stories that have been written, illustrated and published and to encourage more,” she says.

Washington DC calling
Back in April, we shared on this page that Mumbai’s book designer Priya Pereira’s works will be displayed at The National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington DC.

Priya Pereira (right) a close up of an exhibit at the museum
Priya Pereira (right) a close up of an exhibit at the museum

The exhibition that began on May 16 carries on till November 18, 2016. Her solo, Priya Pereira: Contemporary Books From India includes 10 of her artist books.

The talented graphic designer told this diarist that she was hoping to attend her solo in August. Her hand-drawn art works offer great insight into Indian culture, play on language as well as symbolic references.

Desi stardust on Centre Court
There was a dash of Bollywood at Wimbledon’s Centre Court recently.

Star couple, Soha Ali Khan Pataudi and hubby Kunal Kemmu (who shared this frame) were spotted at SW19 for the Andy Murray match. We’ll be keeping a close watch on the next spotting at what is slowly emerging as the new, ‘to-be-seen’ cool phoren location.

What’s up Kangna’s sleeve?

Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

Bollywood diva Kangna Ranaut reigns in an errant sleeve at an event in Juhu last evening.

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