Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Why not me?
A pooch gives a longing look to actor Kriti Sanon as she cuddles another dog at a pets event in Mahalaxmi on Wednesday. Pic/Ashish Raje
Jolly good idea
Alliance Française Mumbai showed the way to sustainability after putting up an upcycled Christmas tree in its Marine Lines office. Librarian Vijaya Masurkar, the brains behind it, told this diarist, "For the basic structure, I took these green bottles that a colleague had thrown away and placed them on cardboard bases before giving the whole thing shape with a long rod, or pod, that we use to place cameras on. We have also put up lights and decorated it with notes that our students have written." Good job, indeed.
Sing for your vindalooo
If there is one state in India that knows how to celebrate Christmas, it's Goa, where reside a large number of Catholic families. It's not that we will get a taste of the merriment that goes on in the sunshine state sitting here in Mumbai. But, a BKC eatery with a Goan theme is trying to ensure that we experience at least a slice of the fun. It's roped in The Vindaloos, one of the only bands in the city that covers Goan music from the legendary Frank Fernand to the more contemporary Remo Fernandes, to play regular sets in the lead-up to Christmas and New Year's eve.
Tharoor is triumphant
Shashi Tharoor has relentlessly made the point that colonial rule ruined India, as was evidenced in the memorable speech he gave at Oxford University in 2015, where he argued in his signature style that the UK owes this country reparation for the damage it did. He even went to the extent of writing a hard-hitting, if grim, book on the subject, titled An Era of Darkness: The British Empire in India. The book has now won him the Sahitya Akademi Award 2019, one of the highest literary honours in the country, which he will share with 22 other authors. They include poets Nand Kishore Acharya (Hindi) and Anuradha Patil (Marathi), novelists L Birmangol Singh (Manipuri) and Cho Dharman (Tamil), and short story writers Abdul Ahad Hajini (Kashmiri) and Kali Charan Hembram (Santali). The winners get a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh at a function in New Delhi next February.
This is an award that plays its art
It was in 2017 that educational organisation Asia Society introduced its Asia Arts Game Changer Awards in India, which is conducted in other places like Hong Kong as well. While past awardees include Akbar Padamsee and Krishen Khanna, the three winners for next year's edition were announced yesterday. They are Vivan Sundaram for the Asia Arts Vanguard category, and Tiffany Chung and Prabhakar Pachpute for the Asia Arts Future honour. While both Sundaram and Chung work across various artistic media including sculpture and photography, Pachpute uses coal in his artwork, something not too many are known to do.
Online platform maps the trends
A leading short video creation platform has released the results of a 10-day campaign it conducted to determine the trends its users displayed in 2019. There are quite a few interesting revelations, including Jacqueline Fernandez (in pic), Riteish Deshmukh, Kapil Sharma and Dwayne Bravo garnering the maximum number of followers, along with Madhuri Dixit. Neha Kakkar and Guru Randhawa, who were the most followed musicians, showed how they are ruling the roost, while O saki saki from Batla House and Punjabi singer Jass Manak's Lehenga were the most popular tracks. Diwali, the Cricket World Cup, Independence Day and Holi were the occasions on which users put up the most videos, while the genres that gained maximum attention were education, food, travel, sports and comedy.
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