Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
The empress' clothes
In 2016, Kate Middleton led to Anita Dongre's website crashing with a flood of enquiries, after she appeared in the designer's boho summer dress as she walked the grounds of Mumbai's Oval Maidan. This week, yet another European member of royalty made headlines.
(From left) First Lady Savita Kovind, BJP MP Kirron Kher and Queen Mathilde of Belgium
Queen Mathilde of Belgium opted for Dongre's printed tunic during her visit to Rashtraprati Bhavan in New Delhi on Tuesday, where she mingled with Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj, First Lady of India Savita Kovind, and MP Kirron Kher. The week-long visit to India marks a first for Belgium's royal couple. Dongre flew to the capital on Tuesday morning, and said she is looking forward to meeting the Queen over lunch on Friday.
Kunal Kapoor teams up with Army for a cause
Actor Kunal Kapoor is known for his charitable pursuits, especially when it comes to supporting different causes through his online crowd-funding platform. And this week was girl-power all the way for the chiseled actor.
Dressed in pink trousers, Kapoor participated in a city edition of a goodwill drive under Operation Sadbhavana, which was launched by the Army in 1998 in the rural areas of Jammu and Kashmir. As part of the drive, Kapoor enjoyed lunch prepared at Mini Punjab, with school girls from Guwahati who were on an educational and motivational tour organised by the Army. A post-meal session of selfies and giggles completed the fun afternoon.
Actor Kalki Kochelin seems distracted at the launch of a new clothing line in Bandra yesterday, while a bystander takes a picture.
Junior Thackeray plays word wars
The Shiv Sena likes to needle the BJP - its senior partner in the state government - with every opportunity it gets. And what gets bigger than the hottest political topic at the moment, demonetisation?
As the move completes its first anniversary, the Sena scion took to Twitter, one of his favourite loudspeakers, to poke fun at the decision with a meme that portrayed the decision in a negative light.
In it, the 'demon' in the word was highlighted to give an indication of which side of the fence the Shiv Sena sits when it comes to arguments over the move. Thackeray followed that up with another tweet that listed the negative fallouts of demonetisation. As far as junior partners in an alliance go, the Sena is clearly not a party willing to play second fiddle.
Always look at the bright side of life
Trust the feisty Nazir Hoosein, owner of Liberty Cinema in Marine Lines, to turn an irksome occurrence into a fortunate error. Hoosein's email account has been hacked and everyone on his contact list got the message: "Please where are you at the moment? I need you to do me a favor. Kindly get back to me as soon as you get this. Regards, Nazir (sic)."
When this diarist called him, Hoosein laughed and said, "Have you got the message too? Sorry, it is a hack and I have got many phone calls because of this." When asked if the barrage of calls was bothering him, especially since he is battling ill-health, Hoosein said, "Yes, a bit. But I am looking at the brighter side. It is helping me say 'hello' to numerous people who I have not spoken to in a while." Oh, how very Nazir Hoosein, really.
Tulsi's gone cool
You've heard about people praying to the tulsi (holy basil) plant, but have you heard about people using it to get drunk? Turns out, anything is possible. City restaurant Bombay Brasserie has just launched two tulsi-based drinks that aim to give this traditional herb a hip new avatar. The first is the tulsitini (martini with a splash of tulsi extract), while the honey tulsi lemonade is a straightforward drink for teetotallers.
The diarist spoke to mixologist Vivekanand Patil, who created the drinks, and this is what he had to say: "For generations, the tulsi plant has been a part of our households. Not many of us have actually thought of putting this unassuming herb in a drink. We chose it because it has a distinct flavour, as well as numerous health benefits. It's also quite versatile." We're all for this cool new tulsi, but we wonder how the more conservative among us will take this piece of news.