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Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier

Updated on: 03 November,2023 04:31 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Team mid-day |

The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier

Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi

I pray thee silently


A child appears lost in prayer for the deceased at Sewri Christian Cemetery yesterday, which was All Souls’ Day


Roger keeps his promise as BCCI chief


BCCI president Roger Binny
BCCI president Roger Binny

On October 25, mid-day had highlighted the fact that former India cricket captain Nari Contractor hadn’t been sent passes for the South Africa v Bangladesh World Cup game at the Wankhede Stadium (as well as earlier big games at the ground, we must add). The report also mentioned BCCI president Roger Binny acting on a letter addressed to him by Contractor and promising to sort out the issue. We are happy to report that Binny kept his promise and ensured two passes for yesterday’s India v Sri Lanka game had reached Contractor’s residence in Colaba. Hopefully, this will continue not only for Contractor but other former India players through the BCCI and Mumbai Cricket Association.

Music crosses boundaries

(Left) Avanti Nagral with singer Sai Godbole in the Marathi language video where they sang Apsara aali; (right) Nagral with artiste Urgen Yolmo singing Phur in Tibetan. Nagral has so far completed songs in Gujarati, Bengali and Tamil
(Left) Avanti Nagral with singer Sai Godbole in the Marathi language video where they sang Apsara aali; (right) Nagral with artiste Urgen Yolmo singing Phur in Tibetan. Nagral has so far completed songs in Gujarati, Bengali and Tamil

While the rest of us use the popular Duolingo application to learn a new language, singer-songwriter Avanti Nagral has been diving into language and culture through music. The artiste recently began work on a mammoth goal of singing 50 songs in 50 global languages in 50 weeks, with a focus on Indian languages. “This is because my dream of doing 100 languages would take two years. Fifty songs in a year seemed manageable,” Nagral continued, “Language fascinates me. As a performer, I know that you can establish a deeper sense of connection with people when you sing in their language.” While it’s difficult to learn a new song every week and get the pronunciation right, for Nagral, video comments on her sounding authentic means it’s a job well done. “It’s heart-warming when people who speak the language feel seen, while those who do not, come to appreciate it.” The series includes duets with singers and instrumentalists hailing from the region where the language is spoken or who speak it, and is showcased through a video, which opens up the opportunity to highlight the traditional clothes and jewellery from that region. “It was important for me to amplify our culture through visual markers, and source some traditional outfits from small businesses and artisans from the region as well,” Nagral signed off.

Nicolo’s got a gut feeling

Nicolo Morea and Adhuna Bhabani
Nicolo Morea and Adhuna Bhabani

Entrepreneur Nicolo Morea’s Greek yoghurt venture Gutsy has been increasingly spotted at pop-ups and premium grocery stores. This month marks its first anniversary as well as the launch of new products about which Morea reveals only a sneak peek — frozen yoghurt. What got Morea interested in gut-health foods? “It began during the COVID-19 lockdown when health was wealth. We came up with [the venture] since we were eating healthy. Adhuna Bhabani [co-founder] said, let’s get this out there, so we did,” he told us.

SRK in Dhobi Talao

Jer Mahal. Pic Courtesy/Shruti Railkar
Jer Mahal. Pic Courtesy/Shruti Railkar

It’s fascinating when a single landmark boasts of multiple historical reference points. Yesterday, on actor Shah Rukh Khan’s (SRK) birthday, founder of heritage platform Passport and Pizza, Shruti Railkar (inset) discovered that a Dhobi Talao landmark, Jer Mahal, which houses Kyani & Co., also houses the Great Punjab Hotel believed to be the place where the star stayed when he arrived here.


Shruti Railkar and Shah Rukh Khan

Railkar told us, “It’s close to Metro Cinema and Edward Theatre, which seems fitting when you think of his association with cinema. The building includes 20th-century clubs called kudds that housed Goans in the city.”

Cut the clutter

What if you could outsource decluttering before Diwali? A pan-Mumbai waste collection drive announced last week by Rahul Nainani, co-founder of Recircle, made this diarist smile at this realistic possibility. “We collected plastic scrap, cardboard, old clothes and e-waste from 1,000 households and sent it to our sorting units. The proceeds will be donated to an orphanage in Bandra. Looking at the overwhelming response, we are planning to open registrations for the next drive soon,” he revealed.

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