Mumbai Diary: Tuesday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
SRK for women
Sometime during the promotion of the film Raees in Gujarat, Shah Rukh Khan had met the feisty ladies of the iconic Self-Employed Women's Association that Gandhian and civil rights leader Ela Bhatt started decades ago in the state.
So moved was the actor by the warmth and affection of the women, that he promised to do something for them. True to his words, the actor has lent his voice to a moving video showcasing the journey of the women, which was released recently.
Shah Rukh Khan
The video also announces the tie-up of Hansiba, the label under which hand-crafted products by SEWA women are marketed, with an online retail giant. In a happy fusion of the traditional with the modern, it was also a pleasant surprise to see actor Padmini Kolhapure in the video.
By now women in India have become indifferent to being sermonised on issues ranging from apparel to drinking choices by self-proclaimed guardians.
But recently, at the Harvard India Conference, when fashion guru Sabyasachi Mukherjee slammed young Indian women for not knowing how to drape sarees, it stirred a storm on social media Even if it was to promote one of his classic lines, we didn't expect such a sweeping statement from the articulate designer. While everyone is entitled to their say, we'd much rather that his designs do all the talking.
When Mumbai got the blues
A curious thing happened over the weekend when it came to spotting trends in music. Both VH1 Supersonic and The Mahindra Blues Festival were held on similar dates, and the difference in the profile of the audience members was as stark as the name of Robert Downey Jr's character in Iron Man. While we didn't attend the former, we saw videos and heard from friends that it was populated by teenagers and 20-somethings who thronged the venue for the electronic and alt-rock acts on the line-up. But the blues fest — which we did attend — had primarily people with grey hair, with a minority of youngsters.
Coco Montoya and John Mayall jam at the event
It showed us where blues stands today in the pecking order of music consumption compared to more modern sounds; it's disappointing if the youth have a disconnect with the genre, we feel. That's because, simply put, the artistes we heard knocked our and everybody else's socks off. And that includes Sachin Tendulkar, who we were told, was part of the audience. But we can't confirm this piece of news since we didn't see him ourselves, considering that we were way too busy listening to top-notch blues legends perform live. Veteran musicians like Leslie Lewis and Gary Lawyer were also spotted enjoying the gig at what turned out to be a very bluesy evening in the city.
Ga-ga over the radio
Ahead of World Radio Day, this diarist decided to drop Mumbai's first and oldest radio station — The Bombay Presidency Radio Club Limited, now known as as the Radio Club. This innocuous looking club bears a mammoth amount of historical weight on its back.
The foundation stone; view of Apollo Bunder from Radio Club. Pics/Suresh Karkera
Under the British rule, the club broadcasted the first ever radio show in the country back in June 1923. For the longest time, it was the only operating radio station in Bombay, focusing largely on wartime programmes with the onset of World War II. Armed with the information, we were disappointed to find no trace of either memorabilia or photographs at the club to give us a pictorial history lesson. A shame that these priceless pages of heritage will stay forgotten to the city's residents.
Look who's a hit in Kerala
Trust Shobhaa De to draw in the crowds at every litfest in every corner of the country. The bestselling author who recently released an ode to her turning 70, posted this frame where she flashes her trademark smile while posing with a couple of her titles at the Kerala Literature Festival that wound up in Kozhikode on Sunday.
She was thrilled to bits that her titles, all translated in Malayalam, were drawing in readers. Now, that's what we call border-crossing of the literary kinds.
Laugh like everyone's watching
Veejay and TV personality Anusha Dandekar finds something absolutely amusing to LOL over at an event in a SoBo five-star yesterday. Pic/Sneha Kharabe
Atal Bihari Vajpayee's daughter, granddaughter arrive at Smriti Sthal to collect ashes