Blast from the past
The aristocratic waistcoat makes a comeback in a new avataar. Make a style statement with these trendy mid-length pieces
Jasmine Singh

Shahrukh wears one to the game show, Kya aap paanchi paas sey tez hain, Aamir’s been floating it around at premiers, MTV VJ Ranvijay too makes a cool statement with it. Well, the aristocratic piece waistcoats makes a comeback. A little bit of altering and designing here and there and you have a brand new fashion statement.

Fashion designers this year have sprung up with waistcoats by giving them a trendy look. Says Ritu Kochhar, director corporate, INIFD-8, “Earlier men used to only wear them on weddings or on some formal occasion. Now, you notice them so often, especially on the celebrities. Adding a waistcoat to an outfit adds grandeur and the best part of the outfit is that it looks stylish with nearly everything. A short waistcoat looks good with denims, long dresses and equally well with skirts and formal pants.”

But the most fashionable trend consists of wearing a plain coloured waistcoat in a casual way. Offers Ritu, “A plain coloured waistcoat can be worn over a plain white shirt. Then again, it depends on your personal choice and on the occasion. Double greys, checks, stripes are apt for a formal evening. Girls can look ravishing in back open and back tier waistcoats in bright colours, red, yellow, orange or floral patterns, as per choice”.

For those of you who want to dress up this aristocratic piece a bit more, here’s what you could do- Team it up with a beautiful casual shirt with buttons at the front. And all ya girls go in for waistcoats with floral prints, laces and ruffles. This lends a casual and yet classic look to the outfit. Team them up with gypsy skirts or long kurtas and denims. Adds Varsha Khanna, city-based fashion stylist lists waistcoats as a ‘personal style.’ “Not everyone can carry off waistcoats well. You need the right kind of physique and attitude. Most waistcoats for women are in khadi stuff with a lot of designing, like mirror work unlike the ones available for men, which are either plain or stripped. These can be clubbed with jeans, formal shirts, and long kurtas.”

The small piece of outfit certainly looks enchanting, but not everyone can get into it. “These waistcoats shouldn’t be too long. They should be short, ending above the navel”, suggests Ritu Kochhar. Also, a waistcoat should lend a proper shape to the waist. Even when it’s a unisex dress, there are different waistcoats for boys and girls. Back open waistcoats are a big no for boys. They should go for the ones that have front buttons and pockets”. One last word of advise for the guys, if you are wearing a waistcoat casually, don’t do it up and you better get down to the gym and tone up.

Available in cottons, Lycra, net, denims, these mid -length trendy outfits are accessible at almost all leading stores in the city- A&M, Shelly’s Wardrobe, Ten West, Catwalk, Benetton, Wills Lifetsyle. 

Make it grand
Cards, a matter of pride for Aditi
Jasmine Singh

You can clearly see a dream wedding and so can Aditi Arora, a Chandigarh -based wedding card designer. “Wedding cards done artfully enhance the richness of the dream, says Aditi, who does exclusive wedding stationary, which includes designer cards for marriages, birthday parties, ring ceremonies and for occasions like baby announcement, mundan ceremony, house warming, jagratta, including designer boxes in exclusive designs with embellishments.

With an architecture degree from Mumbai, Aditi had never thought that she would be designing cards instead of buildings. “I had an itch to do something different from my degree, which was not giving me work satisfaction. So, I joined my husband’s printing business few years back. But then I realized I could do more. That’s when I decided to get down to designing cards”. Initial years were tough for Aditi who had set up her workstation in Ludhiana. Eventually things started to roll and this brimming young lady got her due. “I thoroughly believe that work speaks for itself. I am original in my work and that’s why the clients like what I do,” smiles Aditi, who now operates from NAC Manimajra. Invite is a statement in class and a matter of pride. “Absolutely, agrees Aditi, who takes proper care to design her cards by carefully selecting designs, patterns, themes, material, colour combinations. Keeping the vivid imagination in mind, I create stuff that goes well with the occasion”. Using the finest materials and executing them with precision, Aditi makes stuff, which is one of its kinds. “I don’t pick ideas from the internet, tells Aditi. They are my original ideas and I make sure they are executed with care and delicacy. We have a vast variety of wedding stationary that would make a lasting impression. Every detail is looked into nicely before the final execution.”

So, from making cards and boxes made up of different kinds of paper, like metallic, leather sheets, paper with sparkling affect, cards made with silver lining and kundan work, to contemporary designed boxes with ribbons, net, feather fascinators, crystals, and lot of embellishments, Aditi does it all.

“Wedding is a grand affair, and people don’t leave any stone unturned to make the occasion memorable and grand, feels Aditi. They always want something different, which is why we provide them with stuff that has not been seen or done before, like the scroll card made with handmade silk paper, sheet card with design bars framing it and tied by a silver tassel or the book binding cards or the ones with cardboard filing- they look spectacular.

Lastly, she smiles; they wouldn’t dig a hole in your pocket. Assured!

youth speak
All work & no play?
Abhimanyu Singh Rana

I haven’t been to the gym for the sixth consecutive day now. As I struggled to button up my jeans, I noticed that, for once, laziness or lack of desire was not the reason. I haven’t been sweating over a treadmill due to my hectic routine. Working out isn’t the only thing that has taken the back seat; it goes for laundry and eating. Time restrictions are something that we all deal with. In fact, how many of you try to squeeze another hour out of the day to fulfill the assignments? What the society needs is a balance between education and extra- curricular activities. Education is important and so in relaxation and fun. Agreed, character is primarily defined by two things, education and personality. If one doesn’t have a pleasing personality, developed by activities of fun, it really affects the character. Instead of blaming the education system, we must analyse the factors that lead to stress. The most important one is parental support. The behaviour of a child is a reflection of the expectations of his parents, and most of the times these expectations are unrealistic. Competition, if it is purely academic, could have a negative impact on children. For instance, it’s not difficult for a child to score 95% today. But during college admissions, students who get even point per cent more will end up bagging the seat. 

Shirt Messaging Service
Got something to say, let your T-shirt do the talking
Manpriya Khurana
Aditya Sharma
Aditya Sharma

Don’t we all want to make a statement- loud, screechy, weird, funny, sarcastic, humble ones? One out of the not too many options is the message T -shirts. While India’s tennis star Sania Mirza chose to say things like ‘Well behaved women seldom make history, ‘You can either argue with me or be wrong’, there are so many others who are succumbing to the temptation of message T-shirts.

What is about these tees that have made them a sought after property? Jaspreet Singh, a post- graduate student says, “ I like them because they fetch that ‘second look’ for me. It is interesting to see people carry all sorts of funny expressions when they read the tee, like the one that his T-shirt carries- Are you insane or you just look like one?

They are like one big advantage, say anything without offending anyone. No wonder they are a rage amongst the youngsters. Aditya Sharma, a young executive with CII, has couple of them and can’t stop buying more of these. He jokes, “at times you want the world to know certain things about you. So, I just go ahead and sport one, depending on the mood”.

Message T-shirts are available at flea markets of sector 15, 22, and at ANM sec- 10, Ten West, Catwalk sec-17. So, go ahead tell the world what you feel. And in style, with the message tees.

Express Yourself

  • When you know that I am number one then why try harder.
  •  I am not a loner just lost.
  •  I date only celebrities
  •  Oh god, if you can’t make me pretty then make my friends fat.
  •  I work for money, if you want loyalty hire a dog.

Pure Punjabiyat
Driven by passion & love for Punjab, Priya hopes to make Punjab, the new Mumbai
Purva Grover

SHE loves challenges and describes building up teams as a fun-filled activity. Exploring an unknown territory is pure adventure for her, as for managing family and work, she does that with ease. A wife, mother, actor, director, creative head, anchor, producer, writer and more, Priya Paul Singh has now taken up a fresh task — to make Punjab a media hub. We chat up the COO and head programming of Just TV Punjabi and find out more about the channel and also what drives this Punjabi to work.

So, did she always know that her calling lay in the creative world? Priya was the producer-director of Swayamvar 2000, one of the first game shows on telly and Meri Saheli on Star Plus. And also the writer-producer-director of a short feature film Hamein Jahan Pyaar Mile for Zee and a 30-minute fiction capsule called Yule Love Stories. “No, it happened by default,” smiles Priya. “I was always an active participant in extra-curricular activities, be it in school or college, but never saw myself in this line,” she recalls her student days in Ludhiana. It was only when she moved to Delhi for her masters in mass communication that she saw media as a career option. “There were hardly any facilities in Punjab. Had I not moved out of Ludhiana I would have not been here.”

Does that explain her association with Just TV Punjabi? Pat comes the reply, “India is my homeland and Punjab is my country, and then there can be nothing better than working for brand ‘Punjab.’” Now, that’s what we call a true-blue Punjabi! So how did the idea come up? “Raj, the chairman of the channel wanted to create a pure Punjabi channel and when he shared the idea with me I instantly agreed, “she tells. So the channel as we learn from her, is for the Punjabis, by the Punjabis and to the Punjabis. Tells Priya, “Be it the writers, creators, thinkers or singers, the channel team breathes and lives Punjabiyat.” So, you get to see a mix of reality shows, soaps, movies, horror, comic, kids, religious shows and more on the channel.

Do we see any Punjabi-English movies too, we ask Priya, the writer, producer and director of The Perfect Husband, the only flick from India officially premiered at Cannes 2004. “Well, you’ll get to see the best of Punjab is all I can say,” she signs off. And for that, you’ll have to wait for just another week, for that’s when the channel goes on air.

For laughs

Bindaas comes up with yet another rib tickling comedy kiss kiss bang bang featuring the eternal drama of men Vs women at the work place. KKBB telecasts every Thursday beginning June 5.

Elaborating on the show, Shalini Srthi, associate VP & head programming of bindass entertainment channel said, “KKBB is the unending saga of man vs woman. It’s a battle of the sexes that has been there always. I am sure the audiences will enjoy this comedy treat. This is a hatkey serial this all teh comic flavours. She added, the viwers will surely enjoy watching that battle being fought out and wait eagerly for each episode to learn who wins which encounters!”

KKBB has great performances from Shweta Gulati, Akshay Dogra and Kenny Desai. — TNS

Jasmine Singh

BEAT the heat with a steaming sizzler at Blue Ice-17.The sizzler festival offers a range of treats that are neither too heavy on stomach nor spell dismay for the weight watchers.

And the sizzling platter has Veggi and cheese corn sizzler priced at Rs130. But if meat is still your first love then, chicken at Rs 175, lamb pepper steak, fish and lemon butter sauce sizzler for Rs 200, roast pot sizzler and barbeque sizzler for Rs 450 is just what you should dig into.

Says Gaurav Dhanwal, general manager, Blue Ice, “Sizzler festival is an annual feature, which takes place during the summers. We are offering complimentary beer bint with every sizzler. In addition to this, all these sizzlers are served with boiled vegetables and garlic bread.” Enjoy the hot treats!

On till Sunday

Aussieland Unravelled
Joyshri Lobo

Australia is a great place where kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, ostriches, budgies and the deadliest snakes on earth are abound. DIL’s brother worked there and certified it as one of the friendliest places on earth. Having many ancestors who were deported when not accepted by the parent country, (a euphemism for the British Empire) the Aussie’s have a wild sense of humour, great courage and a down to earth attitude, which accepts all creatures great and small in all colours- pink, white, yellow, black, brown and combinations of all these. Shane Warne epitomises the Aussie attitude. He came and conquered, using a huge smile, a lot of wile and a generous heart, which guided a motley crowd to victory. He’s called Shane Khan now and is glorified as a Prithviraj look-alike, with helmet, armour, spear and all.  He has brought pride to a bomb tattered state.

Beta no: 1 has gone exploring Down Under. Some photographs sent by him show blue gums, buildings and water bodies. There were no people. He said they were either working or in their homes and in any case there are very few people per metre. Meals are over by 6 p.m. Thereafter you watch telly, read a book or share quality time with the family. For us garrulous Indians with our supportive extended families, this sounds Purgatory!

Every Aussie feels accountable for what he or she is doing. If you are doing any job, every moment is accounted and paid for. The transition from India to Australia was simple and comfortable. Jayant fixed his accommodation, car, electricity and phone online from India. He hired a car from the airport, drove to his destination, took charge of the vehicle he had bought and settled down to do some serious cooking with a pressure cooker carried from the mother country. As I spoke to him on Skype, his doorbell rang. I heard him talking in Hindi. It was a representative from another electricity company offering inducements if he would shift his loyalties. Why can we not have a similar arrangement here? I’m sure our electricity would never fluctuate or fail. It seems that administration in Australia is very efficient and supportive unlike the hiccupped pace we encounter here. 

While he stood outside a conference hall in Hamilton, Beta was greeted by an unknown, elderly individual. The man was quick witted, humorous, articulate and very affable. His name was Dr. Paul Doherty. He had started life as a veterinary surgeon, branched off into research and earned the Nobel Prize for Medicine.

My son was stunned by his humility and went to hear him talk again, at a place with an impossible name: Geelong. I cannot expect even an ordinary neta in our country to climb down from his/her pedestal to exchange two normal sentences with me. 

Am I being cynical, disgruntled, grouchy, and disloyal? Maybe, but then the world around me seems to be at loggerheads with something or the other.

The Gujjars, Nandigram, Kashmir, newspaper vendors, anganwadi workers, farmers and millions more are fighting for a place in the sun. The media reminds us daily that life is not sacrosanct any more. Independent India is only sixty years young. Maybe the next century will find us putting our act together.

(This column appears weekly)

Collectors’ Pride
Easy on pocket, high on sentimental value & carrying the artist’s signature — sketches emerge as an art investment
Parbina Rashid

Collecting a piece of signature painting has become way beyond the means of most of us. A recent exhibition in the city showed how our homegrown artists like Madan Lal, Viren Tanwar, Brahm Prakash, Shiv Singh, Malkit Singh have grown in their chosen field, making us proud and sad at the same time. Sad, because when we saw the price tags of their works that read something like Rs 2 lakh and above, we realised that we have actually lost them to national and international buyers.

But when there is a will, there’s got to be a painting, or at least a sketch! Well, that’s what art connoisseurs are doing, looking for original sketches of paintings by big names for their collection. It cost less, comes with a sentimental value as this is the ideation point of a painting and what’s more, it comes with the artist’s signature.

Our artists too are willing to oblige their collectors. For instance Madan Lal, who is making a splash in both national and international markets as a thinking artist, often converts his sketches into coloured drawings. “My sketches are actually complete work of art. In fact, a sketch is the basic for art and this is the medium through which one can judge an artist as how sound he is when it comes to the technical aspects of a painting.” Lal’s sketches, which are the prelude to his paintings, often come in watercolour and are as popular as his acrylics on canvas. The price range falls something between Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000 and they are selling like hot cakes in Delhi and Mumbai.

However, it is not just the economy part, which is motivating art lovers to seek sketches. True art connoisseurs prefer to have a copy of the initial sketch too because, as we mentioned earlier, this is the first point where the idea came to the mind of the artist. “I have this buyer named John Pare from London who insists on buying the sketches too because he likes to see the gradual development in the thought process right from the stage of germination of the final outcome,” says Tanwar.

And to believe them, this is not a new phenomenon. All prominent artists have been exhibiting and selling their original sketches — and their sketches are as valued as their paintings by art lovers. For instance, Sunil Das, a renowned artist from Kolkata had recently exhibited some of his original sketches that sold them for lakhs. Same is the case with Thota Vaikuntam from Orissa. His paintings sell from Rs 7 to Rs 10 lakhs and his sketches too fall in the same category. Jehangir Sabavala from Mumbai who exhibited his charcoal nude drawings, which he had done in Paris in 1948, created quite a sensation in the Capital.

“Sketching is the essence of art and we, artists, are sentimental about the initial drawings , for they show us our caliber and act as a mirror, helping us grow,” says Brahm Prakash. “I have a collection of sketches from my students days which I don’t want to be part with.” And most artists feel the same way, willing to give away only when they are too old and have outgrown the nostalgic phase of their struggling years. An inspiring thought for the new-age artists who believe in short cuts!

Creative Zone
Personality Talk
Parbina Rashid

DO you subscribe to Dennis the Menace’s tagline ‘Nobody’s perfect’ and believe that there is always scope for betterment? Well, if yes, then help is just a bookshop away. It’s in the form of Dr Anubhav Naresh’s book Unveil Your Personality. Though the book is targeted at school and college going kids, anybody can benefit from Anubhav’s observation on human persona.

The book has been the culmination of eight years of interaction with school kids, which he did as a grooming guru for a Panchkula-based voluntary organisation called Break Loose. Not that his endeavour to polish personality ceases to exist, but Anubhav felt the time was ripe to pen down all his experiences in the form of a book and reach out to a wider group.

“During my interaction with young girls and boys, I found most of them lacking in confidence with no clear cut aim in life. Lack of exposure is another thing that is hampering their growth. So through this book, I want to make them aware of the qualities of head and heart, which they are absolutely ignorant of,” says Anubhav.

But how effective is a self-help book in making a personality makeover? “First of all, personality cannot be developed, it can only be polished. And reading a self-help book for the sake of reading it, does not help. You have to pick up the points and inculcate them into your personality.”

The book, written in an interactive manner, deals with personality traits, and goes on to help readers on negotiating skills, time management, conflict management, communicative skills, stress management and even the art of apology.

Having realised his own potential as a writer, Anubhav is now working on an anthology of poems and short stories in Hindi. “Dentistry is my bread and butter but writing is my passion,” he says. It’s only a matter of time this young doc proves that poetry can blossom amidst drilling machines too.

(This column appears fortnightly)

Is anybody listening?
Plaguing our art scene is lack of raw materials, tell city artists
Parbina Rashid

THAT Chandigarh has no buyers for art is an old grievance. Groups were formed, galleries mushroomed, exhibitions were organised periodically, budding artists blossomed into international fame, but the art scene remained exactly where it was. Exhibition venues still look deserted after the inaugural day; Government College of Art pass-outs still eye Delhi galleries for striking that dream deal. So, when veteran artists like Prem Singh and upcoming ones like Madan Lal began shuttling between Delhi and Chandigarh, making city their living quarters and Delhi their workstation, the obvious conclusion was that it is to be there where the art scene is happening. But when during a chit chat, Viren Tanwar, who is also trying to follow suit, reveals that it’s not just lack of buyers but also non-availability of raw materials that are pushing our artists to move, our panic button is pressed and we realise it is time to take a serious look at the matter.

“There are no good galleries, no buyers, no quality materials available, no good framers and not even a happening place where artists can get together and discuss art,” says Viren. “Except for Camel and one or two imported brands, it is difficult to get paints and brushes readily here. And the other major problem we face is to find a good stretcher to fix the canvas. It’s difficult to find even a good framer who knows the nuances of art,” he rues.

Madan Lal who moved his studio to Gurgoan last year is happy with his decision. “Delhi is the hub with so many exhibitions happening there. How many times do we get to see national-level exhibitions here,” he questions. Madan Lal who loves to use imported brands like US-based Golden, Italian canvasses and anti-fungal acrylics from China-based Pabeo was also facing difficulty procuring these colours in the city. “If a buyer is willing to pay a huge amount for a painting, they want the very best not just in terms of aesthetics but in terms of paints and frames too and when an artist reaches a certain level, he or she has to keep up with his standard,” he adds. And where does one go here if one wants to buy paints and brushes?

One name that inevitably comes up on everyone’s lips is Rama Art Material or the tuck shop as popularly known among art college students. And a little soul searching yields another name Munchiram Manakchand Jain in Sector 22, one of the pioneer shops dealing with art materials. At tuck shop, we talk to Saroj Mehta, who has been running the shop on the Government College of Art campus for the past 15 years and is catering to more or less the art college students and pass outs. “We had provided paints and canvasses for big names like M. F. Hussain, Arpana Caur and Prabal Pramanik,” says Mehta. Though the shop has enough to provide a base for budding artists, except for one odd good brands like Winson and Newton, it does not have much for the likes of Tanwar or Lal who are looking for quality products.

“We keep imported brands like Reeves and Pabeo but brands like Wilson and Newton are expensive and there are not too many takers for such expensive products,” says Rakesh Jain of Manakchand.

And after hearing both sides, one just hopes that the city would eventually grow as a ‘hub’ which our artists are hoping to find in the Capital — to retain our artists in their home town which in turn will bring more professionalism to our art dealers.

Pure Beats
S.D. Sharma

Sometimes the award and its recipient mutually reciprocate to the delight of distinction when a prestigious honour is bestowed upon the equally illustrious and deserving beneficiary. Rightfully decorated with the Punjab Sangeet Natak Akademy award at Amritsar by Punjab minister, Hira Singh Gabria, the city-based vocal classical maestro Pandit Yashpaul is undeniably the foremost custodian of Agra gharana today. “ Unlike many honours bestowed upon me, this award is very special to me as conferred by my own state academy,”claimed the guru.The recognition has encouraged and rejuvenated my resolve to disseminate our music tradition, its artistic values, purity of ragas and compositions.

The musicologists and performers of my Agra gharana have played a vital role in preserving and propagating the traditional purity of classical stream. Even today while performing at a concert we maintain a distinct identity of classical and lighter genres of music rather than presenting it in a fusion style, says the septuagenarian maestro still reigning supreme with his enviable mellifluous and virile voice.

An academician and former founder chairperson of Department of Music P.U., acclaimed artist holding the rare top grade of AIR Pandit Yashpaul "Sagun Piya"- born in 1937 at Gujranwala (West Punjab-Pakistan) is a virtuoso, restless innovatory genius-performing artiste in the field of Hindustani Vocal Classical Music. He received initial training from the Late Pt. Kasturi Lal Ji Jassara before being the disciple of the Late Ustad Vilayat Hussain Khan and Ustad Yunus Hussain Khan, the legendary doyens of the Agra Gharana.

A proponent of Guru-Shishya tradition he rues the lack of opportunities for classical music aspirants and only a determined or blessed few take up the challenge. The ongoing reality shows are attracting many who revel in the glamour of filmy world but without an adequate classical base fail to make the mark even after grabbing the limelight, the guru remarks on a sympathetic note.

Green Drive

What better way to celebrate Environment Day than sharing experiences on nature with others. Prof R.C. Sobti, vice-chancellor, Panjab University inaugurated a photography exhibition at Student Centre.

On display were photographs by Navtej Singh, micrographer at P.U. based on local and migratory birds from North India.  The pictures were clicked from Himachal Pradesh, Garhwal, Punjab and Haryana.

Photographs by Jeesu Jaskanwar Singh, lecturer covered landscape under the theme of Enchanting India and highlighted the landscapes from Kashmir, Garhwal, Uttrakhand. The night photography of  the snow covered regions of Pahalgaon and Gulmarg in its full glory under the night stars. The pictues were clicked in subzero degree temperatures. One section was dedicated to the pollution playing havoc in modern urban lifestyles. The gory images of the  pollution in Dal Lake and Jhelum river of Srinagar and the damage caused by it to water bodies and heritage buildings was also showcased.

Besides that the pictures of the house boats and architectural marvels from Srinagar were also potrayed. The photography exhibition will continue for the next 15 days.—TNS 

New releases
The Power Game
Sarkar Raj 

Starring: Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan, Amitabh Bachchan
Director: Ram Gopal Varma

Sarkar Raj is an intense political drama. It explores the world of politics and the development that take place in there. Plus, it is a fresh view at the tradition versus modernity debate. When Anita Rajan (Aishwarya Rai - Bachchan), CEO of Sheppard power plant, an international company, brings a power plant proposal to be set up in the rural areas of Maharashtra before the Nagres, insightful Shankar (Abhishek Bachchan) is quick to realise the benefits that a power plant can bring to the people. After convincing Sarkar (Amitabh Bachchan) who is against it for various reasons, Shankar undertakes a journey along with Anita to the villages of Maharashtra to mobilise support from the masses.

However, things are not what they seem to be and Shankar’s dream project gradually becomes a political minefield. Evil forces gang up to bring down the regime of Sarkar and obliterate Shankar’s name from the political horizon.The film is a study of power.

It is against this backdrop, evil forces mightier than ever, gang up together to bring down the regime of Sarkar and obliterate Sarkar’s name from political horizon. Now what needs to be seen is if the Bachchan trio can help RGV come out of the shadows of his previous debacle Aag. The audience is also looking forward to see the chemistry between Ash-Abhi!

Showing at: DT Cinemas, Fun Republic, Nirman,Picaddily, K.C (Pkl)

Of choices & dreams

Starring: Rajeev Khandelwal
Director: Rajkumar Gupta

The movie Aamir, is a man-on-the-run thriller, which revolves around the eponymous London-based doctor’s visit to his family in India.

Geographically, Aamir’s maze is set in the Muslim dominated streets and residential pockets of Old Mumbai. In its lanes and crowded alleys, cheap restaurants and lodges, amongst nameless pimps and whores, run-down buildings and packed markets, Aamir is made to confront the life he has lived, the ‘choices’ he has made, his dreams, his loves and his immediate fears.

Through the course of a day, lost in the streets of Mumbai, the question remains - do you choose your destiny, or does destiny chooses you?

Does Aamir choose to be a follower or does he rise to become a leader?

Showing at: DT Cinemas

Little Interview
PHIR Sarkar

After the disaster of Aag, Ramgopal Varma is back with his new film Sarkar Raj. The film is a sequel to Sarkar. RGV not only jumps genres with grace but also consistently redefines on the prevailing ones. “Sarkar Raj is the most satisfying film of my career”, said RGV while speaking to Life Style. It has substance, grandeur and excellent


n Do you expect Sarkar Raj to be a hit?

I am confident that it will bring back RGV’s back to its stature after the debacle of Aag. I can assure you that Sarkar Raj will be known as a good film.

n Looking back, what do you think went wrong with Aag?

Actually Aag was not Sholay. It failed due to a bad storyline and a bad screenplay.

n Do you find it easier to work with newcomers than established stars?

I am comfortable working with all kinds of actors.

n Tell us about Sarkar Raj?

It explores the world of politics, power and deceit.

n Tell us something about next project?

I am working on Contract. It exposes the relation between the underworld and terrorism. —Dharam Pal

This Begum is a man!
Umesh Kant plans to hit the stage with his new play
Parbina Rashid

Begum Varve, the name conjures up an image of a middle-aged woman with her trademark Paandaan in a Nawabi set up. But the Begum we are talking about is a man, a 60-year-old, living a dead dream. This is the plot for Umesh Kant’s new play of the same title, which he is planning to bring up on stage by July end under the aegis of his Theatre Lab.

Written by Satish Alaker, Begum Varve is originally a Marathi play, which has been translated into Hindi by Alaker. The story revolves around an old man who used to be an actor under noted Marathi play director Bal Gandhar. As a young actor, he dreams of being a big name, but it remains only a dream even at 60. So, he spends his life in his cocoon, reliving those dreams and cherishing a few memorabilias from his show days.

The play is being weaved more inside the protagonist’s mind, so much so that even four other characters of the play come on dream sequences only. The play is quite a detour for Umesh Kant mythological one like Ek Aur Harishchandra, Ek Aur Dronacharya, perhaps a truly contemporary one only after his Sakharam Binder which got him the Balraj Sahni Memorial Award in 2002. So, what made him pick up this one? “It’s a challenging subject. The play portrays how unfulfilled dreams can become the source of frustration. ,” says Kant.

As a director’s cut, Kant will be bringing few changes in the script and adding a few songs too. “I am looking for actor between 25 to 45 years of age who have musical talent too.” Kant will be holding an audition in the first week of June at Tender Heart School - 33.

  Health Tip

LOW back pain could be due to wrong posture, sudden forward bending etc. Pain is usually intense when sitting/ standing as compared to when lying down. 

Treatment: Standing: Hold some bar or an object with both hands with feet near the wall. Lean back to relax the back. Sitting: Move both arms towards one side to hold the chair, stay for a count of five. Then move towards the other side. Side stretch: Lying on back, place right knee on the left knee bent at 90 degree. With left hand pull right knee downwards with face moving towards the other side. A stretch shall be felt at lower back. Dog Stretch: Start on your hands and knees like a four leg animal position.  Move back on the heels and stretch arms in front as far as possible. Stay for five seconds and return.  In case of severe pain, bed rest is recommended for short period. Activities aggravating pain like manual labour, prolong sitting and driving should be avoided. 

Dr Ravinder Chadha

What the cards say today...

ARIES: The Chariot says you would tackle pending tasks. You would be fiery and persistent as you move towards your goals. Some of you may face some hurdles in matters related to education, love and travel around the 14th. Lucky Colour: Golden yellow. Tip of the week: Reconsider past betrayals and make amends. LIBRA: High levels of energy, enthusiasm and excitement would fill you this week, reveals the Seven of Cups. Your ability to focus would be heightened.  Some of you may invest in stocks or real estate. Be wary of envious friends and colleagues who may try to pull you down. Lucky Colour: Black. Tip: Your decision brings you to the right place at the right time. 
TAURUS: The Knight of Wands reveals this would be a period of change. At work, take the help of a mentor who would be able to guide you and prepare you for growth. Partnerships, business ventures would all be successful. Lucky Colour: Sea green. Tip: Don’t be dismissive of advice from youthful origin.  SCORPIO: You card, The Hierophant, says there may be some good news for most of you. Health and well-being would be strong and keep you in good spirits. Tuesday would be favorable for the purchase of jewellery. Lucky Colour: Lime green. Tip: Don’t reveal your plan of action to anyone.
GEMINI: The Hermit reveals focus on relationships and makes any amends. Friday would see you brimming with enthusiasm and hence making more of an impact than ever. Spend the weekend with friends and also on your own. You would need the time to think and clear out your head.  Lucky Colour: Maroon. Tip: Set the unpleasant set of events into motion. SAGITTARIUS: Strength says financially, there may be sudden profits and windfalls. Business people may get some new opportunities. In relationships, it is advisable that you think before you speak and are not too rash in your judgments. The weekend would be entertaining yet busy. Lucky Colour: Brick red. Tip: Strictly eschew speculation and journey. 
CANCER: The Wheel of Fortune says you would be energised and ready to deal with anything that had been overdue. You would receive help from unexpected sources. Those in love would spend time with their beloved. Lucky Colour: Red. Tip: Don’t waste an opportunity by being rash or impulsive. CAPRICORN: You draw Two of wands, hard work and determination would pay off.  A celebration in the family keeps spirits flying high and the telephone ringing. Try not to demand too much of yourself. Lucky Colour: Pink. Tip: Take things one at a time.  
LEO: The Priestess says you might have to deal with problems that you had been ignoring. Many of you would come across excellent opportunities either for work or investments. Lucky Colour: Royal blue. Tip: Avoid frictions with business partners. AQUARIUS: The Five of Cups spells air of hopefulness. There may be extra expenditure but income too would increase. Everything that you would do would bring harmony into your life.Lucky Colour: Burgundy. Tip: Strictly eschew speculation.
VIRGO: The Ace of Pentacles says that after the slow paced first week, professionally, you would be raring to go. Many of you would be able to realise a certain cherished goal or receive appreciation from those around you. Lucky Colour: Midnight blue. Tip: Do not play into the hands of a shrewd set of colleagues.  PISCES: The Moon says pay attention to detail.Health would need attention. In personal relationships, stay away from shallow people.  Lucky Colour: Coffee. Tip: Take limited risks while speculating.

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