A thousand glorious years

As the popular and picturesque hill district of Chamba celebrates 1,000 years of its existence, it has both age and beauty on its side. From the splendour of its temples to the unspoilt greens of its valley, the place is a treasure-trove for tourists, historians and archaeologists alike. Pratibha Chauhan looks at the district which might become the first heritage district of Himachal

WITH the snow-clad mountains forming a natural barrier, Chamba—a popular summer resort and tourist destination in Himachal Pradesh—is celebrating 1000 years of its coming into existence. Probably, the poor accessibility to this mountainous region has helped preserve its ancient remains, which are in a better condition than those in any other place in the state. The Lakshmi Narayan temple complex in Chamba

Vision of a princess
HAMBA got its name, it is said, after the princess who persuaded her father King Sahil Varman to establish his kingdom at this picturesque valley. Chamba, one of the 12 districts of Himachal Pradesh is really unparalleled in its diversity.

Castle at Hosur
This fort in Karnataka is the first and probably the only example of a British castle in India,
writes K.R.N. Swamy
OSUR is a fast developing industrial town, 50 km from Bangalore. It is also historically important as it formed the border between British India and Tipu’s Mysore and history records that the British defeated Tipu Sultan and conquered Hosur twice in 1768 and 1791.

The Sumatran rhino is back
The endangered rhinos were discovered last year in the state of Sabah, known as the ‘heart of Borneo’, but their presence was kept a secret, reports Steve Connor
N expedition to the remote jungles of northern Borneo has found a group of at least 13 Sumatran rhinos, a species teetering on the brink of extinction. Scientists and officials believe that the rhinos are part of a small breeding population that has so far escaped the attention of poachers.

San Diego for all reasons
Ramesh and Asha Seth
E visited San Diego during one of our tours of North America. It is not on the usual Indian tourists’ circuit. The year round moderate climate is San Diego’s best asset. It enables people to visit it both in summer and winter.

Fallen goddess
Rhoda Koenig on Ava Gardner, the lonely icon of Hollywood
va Gardner went from rags to a rich mix of movies, musicians and matadors, but was left dissatisfied. In 1948, when Universal made One Touch of Venus, there was only one plausible choice for the title role.

Idli goes gourmet
Listed among the great breakfasts of the world, this steamed delight comes in nearly 15 variations, says M. Ananthakrishnan
IRST, it was the parantha from North India that got its own exclusive restaurant chain — Only Parathas. Then, it was the turn of the dosa from South India to inspire a dosas-only eatery — Dosa Hut.

Where sports & women don’t mix
Bollywood’s many representations of women in sports are an amalgam of glamour, perverse voyeurism and crudity, writes Shakuntala Rao
HERE is an elaborate bicycle race scene in Subhash Ghai’s Yaadein. Kareena Kapoor participates in, what appears to be, a professional cycling race across the streets of Singapore.

Russia reclaims Dr Zhivago
Andrew Osborn in Moscow
ussia has produced its first home-grown film version of Dr Zhivago. Anxious to correct what it perceives to be numerous cultural and stylistic inaccuracies in the late David Lean’s 1965 MGM blockbuster, an 11-part TV film has been made in Moscow with some of Russia’s best actors and will start airing in May.

People’s expectations are scaring me
The three months spent in New York shooting for my latest Kabhi Alvidaa Na Kehna were the most difficult phase of my life, ace director Karan Johar tells Subhash K. Jha
Lots of curiosity about your new film?
What for? I am just an ordinary director making an ordinary film. I guess the curiosity comes from my making my first film since 2001 after Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (K3G). Kabhi Alvidaa..., too, has a huge cast. So there will be a certain expectation.


televisioN: Survival in Etosha

Food TalkMore fishy tales
by Pushpesh Pant

CONSUMER RIGHTSThe uses of class action
by Puspha Girmaji

HOLLYWOOD HUESFlatters to deceive
by Ervell E. Menezes

by David Bird

ULTA PULTA: Say cheat
by Jaspal Bhatti


Guts and the Ganges
Neelam Mansingh Chowdhry
Shooting Water: A Mother-Daughter Journey and the Making of a Film
by Devyani Saltzman. Penguin. Pages 256. Rs 295.


Books received: English

Attitude matters
Arvind Mehan
Change Management: Altering Mindsets in a Global Context
by V. Nilakant and S Ramanarayan. Response Books. Pages 355. Rs 380.

Publish and be damned

The scars on her mind
Gender and Conflict
by Shoma A. Chatterji. UBSPD Publishers, Delhi. Pages 233. Rs 295.

Bowled over
Deepika Gurdev
The Match
by Romesh Gunesekera. Bloomsbury. Pages 320. Sin $ 28.50.

‘I never let the present defeat the future’

Confluence of faith
Amar Chandel
Blood Brothers
by M J Akbar; Roli Books; Pages 346. Rs 395.

Sufi is flavour of season
Mohan K. Tikku

Fifth-time lucky
Louise Jury

Back of the book

  • Left Bank
    by Kate Muir. Headline review. Pages 309. £6

  • Making your mind up
    by Jill Mansell. Headline review. Pages 340. £6