Mumbai Diary: Tuesday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Who's the kid?
Actor Alia Bhatt seems to be having a blast, as a young contestant sings for her, on the set of a reality show in Goregaon. Pic/Satej Shinde
Manish to meet Bella
It turns out it won't just be film folk from Bollywood present at the Cannes Film Festival this year, but the industry's darling couturier too. Fashion designer Manish Malhotra will make an appearance for an ice cream brand that also collaborated with international design giant Alexander Wang for the event.
Bella Hadid. Pic/Getty Images
Malhotra will also be seen schmoozing with top model Bella Hadid and will present an exclusive piece of art (not an outfit) inspired by the brand to Hadid. A stylish affair, indeed.
New role for Azmi
Here's another feather in Shabana Azmi's cap. The veteran actor has been nominated as the global leadership ambassador for Women in Public Service Project (WPSP). It's a programme that Hillary Clinton founded to empower the next generation of women. Keeping that in mind, the initiative aims at putting women in positions of influence in governments and civic organisations across the world. Azmi has been a pioneer of women's rights for a while, and says, "You and I know that women leaders can change the world. When women have a seat at the table, they lend their own unique perspective to policy decisions that impact their daily lives and the lives of their communities. We know the world needs women leaders. Now, it is time for action." Here's wishing her all the best.
In praise of the subcontinent's literature
The one thing that the strained geo-political relationships between India and Pakistan has not been able to completely stop - and we are thankful for that - is cross-border cultural exchange. Be it our neighbours' love for Bollywood, or more recently, an essay that writer and former Pakistani Prime Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto's granddaughter Fatima Bhutto penned on the literary scene of the Indian subcontinent. Bhutto made it a point to register her praise for Gurmehar Kaur's "brave book", Small Acts of Freedom, while the student-activist herself confessed the special place Bhutto's work, Songs of Blood and Sword, has in her life. Bhutto also went on to mention some other Indian/Indian-origin writers from the subcontinent including Sonia Faleiro, Meena Kandasamy and the late Eunice de Souza whom she has been reading currently.
Waiting to celebrate a landmark
It's that time of the year when we look at this hallowed structure with even more pride. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (formerly Victoria Terminus), the city's UNESCO World Heritage Site, will complete 130 years this month. After the debate over whether the landmark should be converted into a museum was quashed, it will be interesting to see if the gods and the babus inside this Gothic masterpiece celebrate the date with pomp, and throw open this living, breathing heritage site to the public with a bunch of activities across age groups and interests.
Back with a bang
For all ardent followers of MasterChef Australia, here's some good news. The 10th season of the popular food reality show premiered in Australia yesterday, which means that you get to watch it in India soon. But what's got us all excited are two rather unexpected names making guest appearances this season. While regulars like Nigella Lawson and Curtis Stone will take care of the amiable, happy vibe of the show, Michelin-star celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay will add his fiery touch to it for the first time.
We hear judge George Calombaris wasn't too comfortable with the choice, but then, we also saw Ramsay give compliments like "the sauce is as good as mine", so we guess, the two are meeting halfway! The other surprise, in the words of the show's makers, is "the biggest and most famous guest in the MasterChef history worldwide". Charles, Prince of Wales, who was in Australia for the Commonwealth Games, hosted a reception in Darwin, which was catered by the show's contestants.
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