Shilpa’s the Bigg Boss on tube
Q What kind of people come on such shows? No, I don’t think so because I think that the people who go in would only go for two reasons. One that they don’t have anything to fear from the world and they’re very confident. The other is to become famous. I went in with the thought that I have nothing to fear. I had spent my whole life in front of the camera and I had nothing to hide. I felt that I’ll be eliminated in the first week itself but I lasted.
Q What does one learn from shows like Big Brother? You learn a lot from such shows. There are highs and lows but it’s a learning curve for each participant and through the show the actual colours of a person are revealed.
Q Do you think the voyeurism bit works? I think that’s why reality works because people want more gossip. And here you get to see it. I think it’s entertainment at other people’s cost and so it’s sickening.
Q Why did you say yes to Bigg Boss then? The reason I said yes to Bigg Boss is because I’m familiar with the format. I can safely say that I’ve been there done that. It would be easier for me to empathize with the housemates, since I’m going to be the only other voice they hear apart from each other’s for the 85 days that they’re going to be in the house. I’m going to try my best to make it easier for them. Davina Mccall was our only connection to he world and we used to be so happy to hear her voice. I am happy to be the same for these participants on Bigg Boss 2.
Q Will you get into Bigg Boss or Big Brother again? Absolutely not! Because when I first said yes for the show I didn’t know it would be that difficult and trust me it’s as difficult for the contestants as it is entertaining for the audience. And it was more difficult for me because of the culture clash. Here all the participants are Indian so there won’t be any culture clashes. There I was the only Indian. The participants have to live without their families for 12 weeks! It’s truly very difficult.ῠ It starts sinking in only after the first three days. But I’m sure they’ll get to learn a lot about themselves. We’re so dependent on things like phones and television, in our daily lives that we really don’t know what we’d do without all these things. You’ve to cook your own food and wash your own clothes. That’s the reason why I can’t go in there again.
Q Would you advice your sister Shamita to go in? She won’t take any advice from me. She will not go anyway. (Laughs)
Q Any advice to the participants on how to win the show? I would only say that you need to be yourself and it’s about who the audiences find entertaining and endearing. That cannot be faked. So be real and don’t do things only for entertainment. I think people want to see another side to you and you also get to know about a completely different facet of yourself in that house.
Q If you get a chance which is the one person you would like to lock in the Bigg Boss house? Good question. I don’t know actually. I never really thought about it. Any suggestions?
Q As a host will you be able to make a difference in the functioning of the Bigg Boss house to prevent the kind of stuff that happened at Big Brother when you were there? I want to and I will try to. I’ll be able to empathize with the people in the house because I’ve been through it and I know what they’ll be going through. We’re all human beings so I think I’m going to try and make it entertaining but with a human touch.
Q Do you still remember the time you spent in Big Brother? Yes I do because nobody let’s me forget it. (laughs)
Cover girls uncovered
Bollywood is getting bolder where you would least expect it. On the cover of the latest issue of a men’s magazine, the otherwise demure and coy Vidya Balan is seen wrapped in a white sheet, looking very unlike a Vidya we’ve come to know. The tagline very daringly says, “In bed with Vidya Balan”. Her photograph has generated curiosity among readers, but she’s not the first actress to shed her good girl image on the cover of the magazine.
Earlier there were only a handful of actresses like Pooja Bhatt and Mamta Kulkarni, who dared to portray a sexy and sensuous public image. Pooja got her body painted over a two-piece swimsuit a la Demi Moore for a film magazine years ago. Mamta posed semi-nude for the same magazine just months later.
It was not surprising when Mallika Sherawat wore the sexy black leather swimsuit for the cover of a men’s magazine. The magazine had even mentioned that it was one of the boldest shoots they had ever done. Kareena Kapoor, Bipasha Basu or Katrina Kaif also posed in a similar fashion for them.
The so-called good girls on the cover pages wearing the bare minimum clearly show a shift in what is selling these days. The very sexy Shriya Saran, who posed in a blue bikini for a men’s magazine was reportedly paid a huge amount for the hot photo shoot. The question that comes to one’s mind is why the actresses are ready to dare and bare for cover pages when they already have a platform like films?
Vidya herself felt that there was nothing wrong with the shoot. She was recently quoted as saying, “I think what we shot for the cover was interesting. It’s just that there is a great sensuality to it. There was nothing vulgar to it.”
Soha Ali Khan threw a curve ball when she posed for another men’s magazine. Soha has her own explanations for doing this. “I didn’t want to do it in films because I take my films seriously. I have done bolder scenes in Antarmahal. You have to convince me hard to do it.” But what made her want to pose for a men’s magazine cover? “It was a tongue-in-cheek shoot, which was fun and not meant to be taken seriously. It was not an image makeover. I don’t think I did anything shocking because it was not raunchy,” she says.
Amrita Rao also outdid herself by wearing a backless red Ferragamo dress on the cover of a fashion magazine, Amrita didn’t mind since she saw the classy side of it all. “The concept and reference is classy and high-end, representing fashion. I was very comfortable and I have got an overwhelming response,” she says.
Even the small screen actresses seem to have taken the bold step. Mandira Bedi had given up her usual six-yard saris to look her sexiest on the cover of a men’s magazine. The cover shows Mandira in a golden bikini and with a jacket and pants.
TV actress Shweta Salve did not lag far behind. She has gone bolder than the actresses of the silver screen. “Wearing a bikini is not new for me. This is how I am in real life also, I enjoyed doing it for a magazine and they have definitely made me look sensuous,” she says.
‘It’s cool and sexy to play a deity’
Jaya Bhattacharya now invokes divine blessings to lay off that “garrulous shrew with garish makeup” stance from her profile. “Saas-bahu soaps tend to make you feel stagnant and suffocating at some point of time,” she confides.
So, getting herself cast into Kali’s mould in Jai Maa Durga was a big relief indeed. Currently being aired at 7 pm every Saturday on Star Plus, this weekend serial is already drawing in high TRPs.
Jaya in her complete Kali look never showed signs of buckling under pressure whatsoever. The actress has always paraded her perfect 10 professionalism. “Well, doing the fighting sequences with the asuras (demons) wasn’t an easy feat for me. And though I had a stunt master to continuously assist me in the action scenes, I just once hurt myself only to rebound after nursing the injuries for a couple of days,” she reveals.
Incidentally, this is not her maiden attempt at a mythological roles on the tube. Earlier, Jaya portrayed the goddess Laxmi in a serial tilted Jai Hanuman. “One path-breaking genre comes in and the rest follow suit. The bottomline is to keep flowing with the tide and ensure a good viewership on the whole,” she says.
Is Jaya a pious lady? To this, the high-pitched voice retorts with a whine, “Not at all. I’m not a God-fearing person. I’ve an uncanny fondness for celestial denizens like Durga, Kali and Shiva, since they are inspiring to me.
This time I was offered to play Kali and I thought of sticking to that. Can you handle this – It’s cool and sexy to personify a divine avatar.”
Did the Kapoors refuse Ambani’s offer for buyout?
There was a rumour that the RK banner was up for sale as the Kapoors were not keen on making more films. Earlier there were talks about the Kapoor brothers planning to make a film with Karisma, Kareena and Ranbir under the RK banner but it has been quite a while since the Kapoors made an official announcement.
Recently, a senior representative of Anil Ambani is believed to have made an offer to Randhir Kapoor, which any other person would have lapped up. But that’s not the way of Kapoors.
The offer was made over a few drinks and Randhir got pretty worked up. His pride was hurt.
The first part of the offer was a huge five film contract for a huge sum. The offer was to make five films in association with Anil, who would have then bought the films. The second part of the deal, however, must have hurt Randhir’s ego. According to a source, the Ambani representative offered to buy a stake in RK Films stating that he had heard that the Kapoors wanted to sell off the rights of the films that they had made earlier. This upset Randhir and he retorted, “We three brothers, Rishi, Rajeev and me are competent enough to run the company and take the banner ahead. We are united enough to not let go off the banner”. It seems he didn’t like the way the offer was made, said the source.
Randhir was unavailable for comment. But his brother Rishi was rather upset with the query. “What nonsense. There is no deal. We are not selling anything to the Ambanis.” was what he had to say before banging the phone.
Katrina has the last laugh
Katrina Kaif is on cloud nine. She has been chosen to be the brand ambassador for Nakshtra diamonds, replacing Aishwarya Rai. This has ofcourse not gone down well with the Bachchans, with Abhishek jumping to wife’s rescue saying she refused the contract, hence Katrina bagged it. The beautiful actress however remains unfazed. “People love creating controversies. All I can say is that, right now I am the brand ambassador for Nakshatra diamonds. The company feels I am the right person to endorse their product,” she says.
Katrina feels there is no need to feel insecure about competition. “There is no competition in films or ads. There’s room for everyone. Some 20 big movies are made every year. And if I get four to five of them, I am happy,” she says.
But what about her ouster from Shah Rukh Khan’s Temptations tour? The actress clarifies, “The Moranis (the organisers of the show) have themselves said that if the dates work out, we will do it. I love doing stage shows but right now I will be leaving for the US for a month-long schedule for a Yash Raj movie,” says Katrina.
Deepika, a favourite of the Chopra camp
Though Deepika Padukone lost out on Aditya Chopra’s directorial comeback Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi with SRK to another newcomer Anushka Sharma, it hasn’t stopped her from keeping her good offices with the director intact. She’s always been in touch with the production head honcho with whom she has finished the soon to release Bachna Ae Haseeno.
Looks like all that PR has borne fruit as according to insiders, Deepika is the new favourite of the Chopras, who will soon be signing her for another project. In fact, even though it’s for a short span of time, she will share screen space with SRK once again in Adi’s film, where she is doing a cameo. She was recently spotted at the Yash Raj office working out details for the same, and left the office with promises to keep for the future. If anyone knows how to be at the right place at the right time, it’s Deepika.
Ranbir’s passion for bike irks Neetu
Like John Abraham, Ranbir Kapoor too is passionate about fast cars and bikes. He has a group of biker buddies and this gang of guys loves to go out for some dhoom on the streets of suburban Mumbai, whenever the actor is in town.
Interestingly, Deepika too is a part of the all-boys-club and wants to be more than a pillion rider in the near future. But it’s mom Neetu Kapoor who is not happy with her son’s adventurous activities and has told him in no uncertain terms to stop playing with fire and go easy.
When Ranbir expressed his desire to buy the latest fast paced superbike when in the US, his mom thumbed down the idea saying there was no place in her house for another bike.
She even goaded the usually indulgent father Rishi Kapoor to support her and he too is now against Ranbir’s passion for bikes. Ranbir has since been sulking with his folks about the issue.
Ash is the perfect bahu
While the Bachchans are touring North America for the The Unforgettable Tour, the home front too needs to be looked after. And bahu Aishwarya has taken over the responsibility from mum-in-law Jaya Bachchan, who can now put her feet up and have a good time while travelling. So every morning Indian time, Ash rings up the office in Mumbai and supervises the work that needs their attention. Then it’s time for the briefing on all the press writeups about the tour that she discusses with the touring party later in the day.
Says a family source, Ash has taken to the functioning of the family matters like fish to water and she even speaks to Shweta who is in Delhi and the kids, just checking on them and simple things like that. This has made life so much easier for Jayaji and she can sit back and breathe a sigh of relief at things being in safe hands for now.
Rani in a man’s role
We saw a man moving around Yash Raj Studios in cricket gear. He wasn’t a cricketer. A bad moustache is what he was sporting. A closer look revealed that this man in question was being called Raniji!
Yes, it was Rani Mukherji. The film directed by Anurag Singh also stars Shahid Kapoor, Sherlyn Chorpa and Rakhi Sawant. Called Hidaba, sources tell us that Rani who is playing a cricketer in the film dresses up like a man.
SRK who was shooting next door in the same studio saw Rani as well and found her look hilarious. “She was roaming all over the studio displaying her moustache proudly. She was looking very funny,” King Khan said.
We last saw Sridevi do a wonderful Charlie Chaplin act with her wee little moustache in Shekhar Kapur’s Mr India. Let’s see what Rani will look like in Hidaba.
A mystery full of twists and turns
Eight different strangers with eight different stories try to unlock one truth behind the assassination attempt on the president of United States.
Thomas Barnes and Kent Taylor are two Secret Service agents assigned to protect President Ashton at a landmark summit on the global war on terror. When President Ashton is shot moments after his arrival in Spain, chaos ensue and disparate lives collide in the hunt for the assassin. In the crowd is Howard Lewis, an American tourist who thinks he’s captured the shooter on his camcorder while videotaping the event for his kids back home. Also there is American TV news producer Rex Brooks, who is relaying the historic event to millions of TV viewers across the globe. As they and others reveal their stories, the pieces of the puzzle will fall into place – and it will become apparent that shocking motivations lurk just beneath the surface.
The political thriller Vantage Point is one of the more exciting and original gut-busters that Hollywood has produced in a long time. It’s virtually all action, but the action is never mindless and it is full of marvelous surprises every step of the way.
It definitely makes its “Rashomon”concept work. First-time director Pete Travis – coming off a string of TV hits in Ireland – has put together a scary, endlessly surprising and very satisfying movie that keeps our intellect engaged and our butts well on the edge of our seats for 90 gripping minutes.
Do not miss out on this nail-biting thriller that will have you hooked to the screen.
VANTAGE POINT Director:: Pete Travis Cast: Denis Quiad, Forest Whitaker, Sigourny Weaver Gener: Crime/Thriller Runtime: 1hr 30mts
Karan does a Rajni
TV actor Karan Mehra, by impersonatingῠ Tamil film star Rajinikanth on screen, has enraged Rajinikanth fans in Mumbai. Karan Mehra is known for his role as Karan in the TV serial Pari Hoon Main, and was seen playing a character called Rajni Swami on the show. To play this role, he even took training from the South Indian production unit and crew. “I wanted to practice the language well, because it should not look like a spoof,” says Karan. Despite Karan’s hard work, diehard Rajinikanth fans have been hard to appease. “I have watched Sivaji ten times over to follow Rajnikanth’s style and mannerisms, manner of speaking and his trademark style of wearingῠ glasses. It is tough. I don’t know how these mimics manage to do it,” he says.
Chunky gets candid
Chunkey Pandey, who is busy with films like Khalbali Hai Khalbali, Mira Nair’s much awaited Shantaram starring Johnny Depp and Amitabh Bachchan, Sankat City where he has a double role, Daddy Kool and Paying Guest, is now happier on TV. Or, he is at least enjoying his arguments on air. Talking about his spat with Malaika Arora on the sets of Zara Nachke Dikha, Chunky confessed, “Yes, I had a disagreement with Malaika. But I don’t blame her. The format of the show is such that men and women are bound to bicker. After all, it’s the war of the sexes, literally,” he says.
Manjrekar to act in a telly serial
Film director Mahesh Manjrekar, who has some hit films like Vaastav to his credit, was seen shaking a leg on Jhalak Dikhlaja before becoming a judge for Ekta Kapoor’s show Kisko Milega Bollywood Ka Ticket, is all set to make a grand entry into a telly soap. Mahesh is not directing any new project right now, but he will be acting on a TV show. While Mahesh hasn’t been available for comment, sources say the director cum actor has previously acted in Marathi serials and will be doing a Hindi serial based on the life of a lady cop called Monica Mogre on Zee Next. Yash Patnaik’s company Beyond Dreams is producing the show with Parakh Madan in the lead role and Abhijeet Satam, the son of Shivaji Satam, paired opposite Parakh. Yash Patnaik as well as Parakh Madan refused to talk about the serial at this juncture.
Gaurav draws co-workers’ ire
Gaurav Chopra was seen yelling and muttering expletives under his breath the other day when he was shooting for Zara Nach Ke Dikha.ῠ Gaurav’s behaviour has not gone down well with the production team of the show or the people dancing on the same team as him. “We are finding it tough to deal with him. He had promised to mellow down but hasn’t,” says a source from the production.
His behaviour “could also perhaps be due to the presence of his ex-girlfriend Narayani Shastri on the show, he is trying to grab her attention,” adds the source. The boys’ team is upset as he reports late on the sets and does not cooperate with them. The best dancer on the men’s team, Bakhtiyar Irani, and the choreographers are disappointed with Gaurav’s attitude, especially since choreographers find it difficult to make him work on his steps.
Yash Tonk’s cameo in Kyunki
Kyunki is a show where several actors have walked in and out. Now it’s Yash Tonk’s turn to play a cameo in Kyunki. He plays Ganga’s ex-lover Shiv Singhania who has come to get her back in his life once again. “Shiv is very passionate about Ganga and wants to win her love again,” says Yash, admitting that it’s a negative role that will last for two months.
“I have had a great time playing the lead in Karam. But Kyunki is giving me an opportunity to play something different. It’s just a two-month job and I had no problem saying yes to the role because it’s the same production house I am working for. Besides, Kyunki is also a hugely popular show,” he adds.Joining him in the serial is also Rahul Vaidya who won the Jo Jeeta Wohi Superstar title.
Making his acting debut,ῠ Rahul plays the role of a chief guest who is a celebrity and who inaugurates a restaurant.ῠῠ Gaurav will join the serial a little later.
Roopa unhappy with Balaji
Roopa Ganguly is best remembered for her Draupadi act in B. R. Chopra’s Mahabharat. But after doing the mythological serial and a few Hindi flicks, Roopa settled down in matrimony. Two years ago, she resurfaced again on television in Balaji’s Karam Apna Apna and since then serials have kept her busy.
Till a week ago, she was doing Ekta’s Kasturi which she has quit now and has joined Creative Eye’s Waqt Batayega. Ask her the reason for quitting Kasturi and she says she wasn’t quite happy working for Balaji. “Everything was fine for some time. But some how I felt the respect was not there. I am a very sensitive person and as a senior actor I expect respect,” she explains.
She is happy with her role in Waqt. “The character in Waqt is important in the story. Besides, I am being treated well by the production company that gives me the liberty to interpret the character in my own way,” says Roopa.
The paani puri war on telly
A new heady mixture of entertainment is to hit the tube soon. Star One is launching a sitcom called Paani Puri that brings the Paani and Puri families together under one roof. Both families have different cultural backgrounds. Vikas Puri, a middle class 28-year-old can’t do without 25-year-old Divya Paani, daughter of a retired bureaucrat.
The two lovers push their luck by tying the knot and making their parents deal with each other. The over-talkative middle class Punjabi Puri family is pitted against the sophisticated Paani family, resulting in an explosive blend.
Sumeet Raghavan and Smita Bansal play the young lovers in the sitcom which goes on air from August 30. The show’s other cast includes Sudhir Pandey, Shagufta Ali, Homi Wadia and Bhavna Balsaver.
Cross-dressing gets krushna good marks
Krushna Abhishek, like his uncle Govinda, is an excellent dancer and has been participating in many dance shows lately. But more striking than his dancing is the fact that he has been cross-dressing a lot during these shows. In the two reality shows that he is doing currently – Kabhi Kabhi Pyaar Kabhi Kabhi Yaar and Comedy Circus – he has cross-dressed even when the theme didn’t require him to do so. Only one episode of Comedy Circus was themed ‘role reversal’, giving him a good opportunity to dress like a woman. The benefits of his cross-dressing is, however, that every time Krushna comes in female avatar, he gets good marks from judges. No wonder Kashmeera Shah is taking Krushna’s cross-dressing in good spirit.ῠῠ
Jatin Shah joins Kuch Is Tara
Jatin Shah, better known as Adi of Kahani, has been out of the show for the past five months, because the second generation has been kept out of the current plot. So it was Kabhi Kabhi Pyaar Kabhi Kabhi Yaar that kept him busy for some time. Now that he has been eliminated from the dance show, Jatin has joined Kuch is Tara as Ranbir’s friend.
“I am playing a doctor who Ranbir calls from London to diagnose Kanya/Natasha’s split personality disorder. I can’t talk much about the role but my character has a connection with Natasha,” says Jatin who is also looking forward to his entry in Kasturi. “It is tentative and I might join the show in some time,” he says. He has also been told that he might be back in Kahani. So after sitting idle for a few months, Jatin is all set to get busy now.
Smart Shrimati’s back
Smart Shrimati, the game show for homemakers, is back for a third season. In the show, the middle-class housewife has a chance toῠ play the game that is based on the Chausar from the epic Mahabharat where the husband is trapped in a giant wheel and the wife uses her intelligence to release him.
The show has a new set and there is a change in format.ῠ Now, there are 16 contestants from four zones. Each zone will have two finalists from which one will be chosen by viewers. The finalists from each zone then play in the finale for a prize of Rs. 10 lakh.ῠ
“The show sends a message that being a housewife is no ignominy, but deserves appreciation and recognition. It celebrates and salutes all homemakers who have always risen to the challenge of managing their home and family,” says host Anu Kapoor.ῠ
(Snippets by A.L. Chougule)
In studio with Swarathma
If you look from outside, it surely won’t appear to be anything like a recording studio (of course not for those who are regulars). We waited for 20 minutes after ringing the doorbell, and when there was still no response, we decided to find the action all by ourselves. Two minutes later, we found it in the basement.
Finally, we were in Khitiz, hoping to watch a recording session with India’s “best Hindi band” Swarathma.
We were the first to tell you that the only reason why Swarathma competed for Radio City’s hunt for the best Hindi band of the country was the record deal with EMI Virgin records. Now that they have got it, they are recording their debut album in the basement of house number 99, Anand Lok, New Delhi. Vasu confesses that it is their first time in a studio, and they are enjoying every minute of it.
“Until now we have finished recording eight songs. The ultimate challenge is to get the same sound as that of our live shows (those of you who have witnessed Swarathma’s energy on the stage, will swear by it). We have been recording here for 10 days, and we will probably take another five or six days to complete it.”
He informs us that except for the instruments, most of which are their own, their record label (EMI virgin) is supposed to take care of the whole process with the help of Indian Ocean’s drummer Amit Kalam, who according to the band “is very interested in working with us”.
“I think in the next few months, we might tour with Indian Ocean in the United States,” added Vasu.
All this while, Shubham, the assistant recordist, was busy going through the timelines of a song on the monitor.
We asked him how much they charge per recording. “We charge Rs 1,000 on an hourly basis,” he answered. Later, Vasu calculated the expected cost of recording the entire album to be somewhat close to Rs 4 lakhs (they will feature 11 songs on the album).
He also said that Vijay Nair, who has an experience of managing Raghu Dixit (Vasu’s brother) and Groove Supa, is still negotiating the deal with the label, and it was on his request that Amit decided to help Swarathma.
However, it was a mystery to us why Mysore-based Swarathma, with most of the band members staying in Bangalore, decided to come to Delhi to record their album. Is there a dearth of good recording studios in Mysore or Bangalore?
Speaking for the first time, Montrey, the drummer said, “We wanted to record the drum sequences live, and as this option is not available everywhere, we decided to come to Delhi. Most of today’s bands use programmed drum sequences, but we thought live drums will accentuate our sound.”
So how long will Swarathma fans have to wait for the album? “It will take some time. After the recording, we will do the mixing and mastering in different studios. It is a long process,” Vasu informed.
Montrey added, “Amit wants everything (recording, mixing and mastering) to be done at different studios. So, after recording here, we will probably do our mixing at Ramoji Studios in Hyderabad.”
Vasu also informed us that they might do the mastering of the songs abroad, citing a dearth of good engineers in India as the reason behind that.
Before we finished, Shubham played two tracks from the self-titled album (Sur Mera and Pyaar Ke Rang) that they had recorded that day.
Re-discover fusion with guitars
EMI Records must have waited for the right time to re-master and release this album. Considering Jerry Garcia’s birthday on August 1, full marks to EMI Virgin Records for releasing the album now. Sanjay Mishra’s Blue Incantation featuring Grateful Dead’s frontman late Jerry Garcia is one of those albums that tried to rediscover a sound, which is today commonly known as “progressive” fusion. Originally recorded in 1995, Blue Incantation is a sincere effort by Sanjay to offer an interesting insight into the sound of guitar within the purview of Indian ragas and style.
A compilation of 10 tracks (all produced by Sanjay), Blue Incantation, as the name suggests, is a ‘charming’ amalgamation of different styles of guitar playing (from flamenco to trademark country blues, and also with a tinge of Indian ragas).
Jerry contributed to three tracks (mostly with the electric guitar) strumming his characteristic blues tones (remember Truckin by Grateful Dead), and adorning the background of Sanjay’s compositions.
Right from the first track, My Meditation, any listener with an ear for “fused” guitar would to be able grab the technicalities and complexities of Sanjay’s compositions. Slowly as the album progresses into the third track For Julia (also my personal favourite from the album), its sound starts to grow on you.
Sanjay’s love for quavers and semi-quavers is well exhibited in the compositions, and George Thomas’ and Steve Zerlin’s bass coupled with Samir’s timely laggis maintain an incredible tempo in tracks such as Allegro, My Meditation and Monsoon. Considering it is an album dedicated to the guitar, exhibition of harmonics, arpeggios and processed tones go without saying.
Mom makes the best Parsi ravo
I love to eat and enjoy different cuisines, though I am basically a rice-dal-curry person. However, there are few eatables which I won’t touch. One such item is pizza, which has gained a lot of popularity. I am also not too fond of burgers. On the other hand, whenever I am very hungry or feeling low, I turn to sandwiches as my comfort food.
Though I try to steer clear of street food, I can’t resist the vegetable sandwiches and chaat on Mumbai roadside. Salads and kebabs are my other favourites, and at parties, I always stick to these two things.
Once in a while, I eat out too. Even though I am not fond of oily and extremely spicy food, I like to frequent Four Seasons for their flavourful biryani and snacks. Hyderabad can indeed boast of its non-vegetarian snacks like kebabs. Ohris’ also dishes out delicious tandoori cuisine.
Though I can cook just basic meals, my mom makes the best ravo. This dish is basically sooji ka kheer with dry fruits. Hers is simply out of the world. It’s one of our typical Parsi sweet dishes. I also like the Parsi dhansak. I would like to mention another tasty homemade food that I ate at a friend’s place – appam with chicken stew, a Malayali dish. Among sweet dishes, I have adored the kala jamum of Kolkata since childhood. But I haven’t found elsewhere.
In world cuisine, I prefer Thai food. In Singapore, there’s a restaurant called Steamboat. I really enjoyed eating the fresh seafood cooked right before me. The food was a bit bland, but it tasted good.
In South Korea, however, I had an unpleasant experience. I accompanied Saina Nehwal there as her personal trainer for a badminton tournament. The smell of the semi-cooked food was horrifying. Sandwiches came to our rescue, and we survived just on sandwiches for all the 20 days that we stayed there.
I have been to Dubai and quite liked the Lebanese food. The Belgian chocolate and ice creams in Dubai are awesome. I found Australian food too fattening, but their steaks and vegetables are yummy.
Finally, I would advise foodies to keep their calorie intake to a minimum. Binge as little as possible on deep fried food and potatoes. It’s also not a healthy habit to almost starve yourself six days and gorge on all goodies on the seventh day. Caution is the keyword in diet. So, enjoy eating with moderation.
Here you get all, from snacks to sweets
Hangout@Eat World, Dharam Karam Road, Ameerpet
Who all frequent: Rohit Sehgal, Prayag, Fawad Khan, Sheetal Iyer and Arun – students from Malla Reddy Engineering College, Icfai, LFJC, St Francis and CSIIT college.
Cost: Rs 5-Rs 30.
What’s hot: Chaat, samosa, paani puri, pav bhaji, sweets like rabri, jalebi, gulab jamun, fresh fruit juices and cold drinks.
What’s the catch: “The chaat and paani puri are amazing and a big hit with us. That’s why we come all the way from our college to gorge on the food,” says Sheetal. “The eatery has good indoor and outdoor seating arrangements and service is prompt. From snacks to sweets, we get everything here,” says Rohit Sehgal, a student of Malla Reddy.
Gold is pass
, try costume
Gold prices have shot skyward, and if you are wondering how to fit jewelry into your wedding budget, we have a solution for you. Try out costume jewellery, which isῠ glamorous yet affordable. It also matches your attire perfectly or can be modified to match it. Some of this jewellery even looks like real gold but can be worn without fear because it is less valuable.
Suhani Pittie deals with jewellery that’s reasonably priced, yet extremely elegant andῠ sophisticated. She mostly uses gold plating on silver to make the piece of jewellery appealing. Uncut crystals, semi precious stones, wires, glass and wood all form a part of her work and create a magical effect. Her shop in Banjara Hills has a beautiful collection of earrings, kadas, necklaces and rings. Earrings range from Rs 1500 to Rs 4,000. Neck pieces are priced from Rs 4,000 onwards. Bracelets range from Rs 3,000 to Rs 4,500. Cuffs are priced between Rs 3,500 and 4,500. Pendants range between Rs 300 and Rs 1,500 and rings between Rs 800 and Rs 1,500.
Also in Banjara Hills stocks costume jewellery from different designers from across the country. Silver jewellery studded with crystals creates an illusion of white gold and diamonds. They have an exhaustive collection of neck pieces, earrings, bangles, finger and toe rings, and armlets. The exclusive jewellery pieces range from a paltry sum of Rs 500 and go up to Rs 11,000.
Do check out the kundan sets in Shri Satyanarayan Jewellers and Pearls on M.G. Road. They exude elegance and charisma. Prices for the sets start at Rs 2,500 and go onwards. You can also take a look at the beautiful silver jewellery embellished with precious and semi-precious stones.
Amarsons Pearls on M.G. Road has exquisite pearl jewellery done on gold plated silver. A lot of crystals and stones are combined with the pearls to give the jewellery a splendid look. Do check out the pretty jadau sets Addresses: Suhani Pittie Road No.1 Banjara Hills
Also Road No.8 Banjara Hills
Shri Satyanarayan Jewllers & Pearls M.G. Road
Amarsons pearls M.G.Road
Get stylish with trendy belts
Belts are a rage this season and can be used to make a fashion statement, so make sure you are fastened in a stylish one.
Feliz in Somajiguda has a wide range of fashion belts. There are belts of different fabrics like canvas, linen and lycra to choose from. On display are some leather belts embellished with coloured stones that look very interesting. However you can try out the broad belts available at the store. Prices begin from Rs 250 onwards.
Passion N Style, behind Lifestyle Building, has an interesting range of imported belts which are available at a price range of Rs 695 to Rs 1695.
Do also check out the hip and trendy belts available at Wardrobe on Banjara Hills and Vogue in Nagarjuna Circle.
Party all night
The road outside Krishna, Ekta Kapoor’s bungalow, was a sight for celebrity spotters as Ekta’s whole khandan joined her to celebrate herῠ an award that she had won. TV and theatre personalities came looking their best but when Ekta’s car pulled in, she looked somewhat under-dressed. Jeetendra, Sakshi Tanwar, Makrand Deshpande, Vikas Sethi, Dolly Thakore, Ali Asgar, Rakshanda Khan and Tarana were all spotted outside Ekta’s house.
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