Uddhav Thackeray: 'I only have to say mitron as it is equally dangerous'

Jan 12, 2017, 09:50 IST | Team mid-day

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray appeared to borrow a leaf from his father Bal Thackeray’s book, when he employed the arsenal of biting wit to demolish perceived political rivals at the launch of industrialist and president of the Samajwadi Janata Party, the multi-faceted Kamal Morarka’s wildlife photography book, Roar: A walk through the wild,’ yesterday

Uddhav Thackeray at the launch of the book. Pic/Bipin Kokate
Uddhav Thackeray at the launch of the book. Pic/Bipin Kokate

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray appeared to borrow a leaf from his father Bal Thackeray’s book, when he employed the arsenal of biting wit to demolish perceived political rivals at the launch of industrialist and president of the Samajwadi Janata Party, the multi-faceted Kamal Morarka’s wildlife photography book, Roar: A walk through the wild,’ yesterday.

“These days I do not have to begin my speech with the word ‘Roar,’ the tiger’s cub had said in chaste Marathi, alluding to the book’s title to an audience consisting of the likes of Pritish Nandy, Vijay Kalantri, Mahendra Sanghi and Bittu Sahgal (who had moderated a discussion with Morarka). “I only have to say mitron as it is equally dangerous,” he is reported to have said to much laughter.

This when you think about it, could be further indication of the so called widening chasm between Maharashtra’s ruling allies, and its implication on the forthcoming municipal elections!

Too many chefs
Word comes in that the India born Michelin-starred chefs Atul Kochhar and Vineet Bhatia are cooking up a storm. Kochhar, who had set up NRI and Lima in BKC has already moved on to his next project and is set to open his latest restaurant Hawkyns in Amersham, England this month.

Chefs Vineet Bhatia and Atul KochharChefs Vineet Bhatia and Atul Kochhar

“I’m incredibly excited about the opening of Hawkyns. This is going to be my first restaurant offering a modern approach to traditional British cuisine. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” he says. And with this he increases his tally of restaurants he oversees, which include Benares in London and Madrid, and also Rang Mahal in Dubai.

And from one Michelin chef to another: Bhatia, who like Kochhar has spent the majority of his cooking career overseas, is in town. We spotted the chef walking around a five-star hotel where he is residing this week. The diminutive maestro also has outposts in London and Dubai, and oversees the popular modern Indian restaurant Ziya at the Oberoi in Mumbai and is expected to be in the kitchen till the end of the week.

IMC’s undying traditions
That the Indian Merchants’ Chamber, headquartered in Churchgate is one of the bastions of Mumbai’s financial establishments, is undoubted.

Pabiben Rabari (second from right) receives the puraskar from Aditya Puri, also seen are Radhika Nath and Tara Sharma SalujaPabiben Rabari (second from right) receives the puraskar from Aditya Puri, also seen are Radhika Nath and Tara Sharma Saluja

Established in 1907 during the days of the British Raj, to promote trade, commerce, and industry by Indian entrepreneurs, it soon won a name for its role in India’s freedom struggle, becoming arguably the only commercial institution that could count Mahatma Gandhi as its members.

Indira Mahindra and Radhika Nath
Indira Mahindra and Radhika Nath

Unsurprisingly over decades its rosters have boasted of some of the oldest and most celebrated surnames from the city’s elite business community, with its later formed Ladies Wing, keeping pace with a vibrant programming and leadership of its own.

All this came back to us, as we attended the 24th IMC Ladies’ Wing Jankidevi Bajaj Puraskar 2016 on Tuesday evening, which saw the award being conferred on the charismatic Pabiben Rabari, rural entrepreneur from Kutch, who has single-handedly revived the region’s vibrant embroideries, bringing in modern practices and technologies, and thus empowering a generation of rural woman.

And as a riveting audio visual presentation on the remarkable Jankidevi Bajaj who received the nation’s second highest civilian honour, the Padma Vibhushan for her active part in nation building rolled on the screen, we were once again struck by the IMC’s unbroken links with generations of India’s business leadership.

Because the film had featured the author, sophisticate and all round blue stocking, the late Indira Mahindra, wife of the leading industrialist Harish Mahindra, and mother of Anand Mahindra, who had been chairperson of the first Jankidevi Bajaj awards committee; and seated gracefully on stage along with the event’s chief guest, Aditya Puri and guest of honour, actress Tara Sharma Saluja, was Indira’s daughter, Radhika Nath – President of the current Ladies’ Wing, proving once more Mumbai’s abiding financial traditions, and that the more things change the more they stay the same.

Time for nappy duty now?
Mumbai’s answer to Flavio Briatore, the creator of the successful Billionaire brand of nightclubs, Rishi Acharya and wife Suman, were blessed with the birth of a baby boy on Tuesday. “Both mother and son are doing well,” says Acharya, who is one of the pillars on which Mumbai’s hot and happening night life is predicated.

Rishi Acharya and Flavio Briatore
Rishi Acharya and Flavio Briatore

Which leads to the question, will the fact that his new found status as dad interfere with his famous night owl existence? A few months ago, we’d caught Acharya ruminating about his new found responsibilities as a householder. Will nappy duty catch up with one of Mumbai’s most effervescent party animals? Time will tell. Meanwhile time for much bubbly to pop.

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