Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Hear no evil, speak no evil, think no evil
Journalist Prannoy Roy, and actors Amitabh Bachchan and Dia Mirza each seem to embody Mahatma Gandhi's principles with their actions during an event to celebrate his 150th birth anniversary at a studio in Andheri on Wednesday. Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi
Just going with the flow
City-based photographers Aslam Saiyad and Gopal MS who started the BEST stories collective earlier this year have embarked on another venture. HalluHallu is an initiative that entails discovering places slowly through walks and workshops.
The inaugural Dahisar River walk took place yesterday with writer and photographer Gangadharan Menon. It had 29 participants in attendance.
"I've been doing work along this river for three years. But I also wanted to share some stories I uncovered along the way and that's what I did during this walk. The attendees also met Warli artists, engaged in a workshop on basic Warli art and went fishing, too," Saiyad told this diarist adding, "We plan to redo the walk in future as well as conduct more walks along other rivers in the city."
Spooked in Mumbai
Irrespective of whether you enjoy or hate them, horror stories leave you with a certain curiosity. This, especially when, they are situated close to home. That's what K Hari Kumar's new book India Most Haunted hopes to do. The title which releases on October 31 is a collection of 50 short stories based on real experiences, myths or reportage. "It's the biggest compilation of short horror stories in India," Kumar told this diarist.
The Chennai-based author has covered places from all over the country including Rajasthan, Darjeeling, Jammu and Kashmir as well as Mumbai, where he lived for four years. He adds, "The book features Aarey Colony, Sanjay Gandhi National Park, and Malabar Hill's Tower of Silence and Grand Paradi Towers. My style of writing is inspired by Satyajit Ray, Roald Dahl and Ruskin Bond. It was also important for me to write this with an objective lens, regardless of whether I believe in these stories or not."
Akerkar junior's all set to soar
A culinary eagle has learnt to fly. Amalia, chef Rahul Akerkar's daughter, has completed her course at an F&B school in New York. The proud father shared his happiness with this diarist, who asked him what sort of a role he foresees playing for his daughter, now that she is entering his own professional world.
"Well, she's currently working at The Modern in New York, which is a two-star Michelin restaurant. And she's coming back next month, after which she'll work at Qualia [his Lower Parel fine-dine] for a while. Then, I am going to throw her out.
She needs to work for three or four years across the world before coming back. I will, of course, play a big part in guiding her. But at the same time, I think it's important that she learns from other chefs, cuisines, work styles, countries, languages, the environment, all of it.
And she can come back after that if she wants to. But if she doesn't want to, that's her choice too. I mean, I can guide her, but I can't force her to do anything," Akerkar said, which means that the eagle, in other words, can soar on her own terms.
A pledge for simple living
If there is one thing that has become clear as climate change begins to affect our everyday lives, it is that there are no political boundaries when it comes to the wrath of nature. So, while 2018 Magsaysay Award winner Sonam Wangchuk and the students at his alternative school in Ladakh are building ice stupa artificial glaciers and developing low-water farming techniques for climate change adaptation in the mountains, it wouldn't amount to much unless we city dwellers change our lifestyle, too.
With this in mind, Wangchuk launched the #ilivesimply movement recently. A unique crowd-funding campaign, it urges people to not pledge money but behaviour changes. So, a pledge to not use single-use plastic will amount to a contribution worth $1,000. Have you made your pledge?
Something worth Czeching out
While most people in India paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary by spending time with family, besides, of course, observing a dry day, the Czech Republic planted trees in his honour — this is a cause that's as crucial as Gandhi's plea for non-violence in a day and age when the environment is doomed.
Czech Republic's Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (in pic) planted 150 trees in collaboration with the Indian Embassy, which also saw the country's Environment Minister Richard Brabec participate.
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