Lucky Charm
In town to promote Oye Lucky..., Abhay Deol gets real
in his new role of thug
Jasmine Singh

A scene from Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye.
A scene from Oye Lucky!
Lucky Oye.

Whether it's a myth or real, Bollywood fans will unanimously agree on this one: The Deols, leaving aside Esha, have two left feet. They can do everything on the screen, knock down a zillion gundaas with a punch, trapeze on a burning train, romance a lady, laugh, cry or howl, but they just can't dance.

So, when you see someone from the Deol clan shake a leg and that too doing some salsa, you can't help but ask: Abhay was that you in Honeymoon Travels Ltd. How on earth did you manage that? It must have taken a month or even more to shoot the dance sequence?

Abhay Deol and Neetu Chandra poised for their next release Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye.
Abhay Deol and Neetu Chandra poised for their next release Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye.
Photo: S. Chandan

And the dimpled face, unruffled, level- headed actor, Abhay Deol, sitting at the Chandigarh Press Club, smiles back, "It was me and what you saw on screen was a 'editing wonder'. Honestly, it took us 13 days to shoot the song, unlike what you may have thought! I trained for the dance sequence, but I was very nervous on the final day. Despite this, I think it has come out well. What say?" Of course, all those swirls with Minnisha Lamba. Who would have thought of a Dancing Deol! "I haven't got offers for any dance based-film, but if the script is good and the song and dance are integral to the movie, I would surely want to do it. But, after training for it," he adds.

From dance to what the actor is really good with, portrayals of simple characters closer to life and reality. This is what his upcoming movie 'Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!' directed by Dibakar Banerjee is all about. "There was a phase when larger-than-life movies clicked. I guess we've overdone them, which is why we are exploring the old and real culture. This is the reason why movies inspired or based on real life are being made." On 'Lucky Oye…', Abhay, who likes dark comedy and drama, says "It is a story of a thief, who steals at night and wants to be famous by day. I didn't practice to be a pick-pocket, but I did work on the language, typical of that part of Delhi this thief comes from."

Critical acclaim or box-office applause, we let Abhay cite his pick. "I have received critical acclaim for my movies, like Manorama Six Feet Under. At the same time, no one really knew that the movie was being released. To put it simply, it wasn't being marketed well. 'Oye Lucky…' is backed by UTV and I have hopes from it. Also, it is the same critical acclaim which gets me the next project."

And we thought it was simple for anyone coming with a Deol tag. Says Abhay, who made his debut with Socha na tha, "I had to face a lot of prejudice and over-expectations in the beginning. Prejudice because they thought that the Deol tag would give me an easy ride in the industry and over-expectations as the family has already established itself. But now people know me, I guess."

Do the Karan Johar and Yash Raj camps also think that you have arrived. "I do work that suits my thought process and personality. I always read the script and then see who is backing the project. If I were good enough for them, well, then they would like to take me in their movie. At the same, I think they would like to work with established actors," he laughs. "Now that I have said this, they will certainly not take me."

Combo girl

A combination of the Smita Patil and Madhuri Dixit styles would suit her career more. And she is already working on the combo. A shake-your-booty act in Garam Masala and in-your-face reality in Traffic Signal.

Neetu Chandra, who pairs opposite Abhay Deol in Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye, for once seems to be on the right track.

But will she be able to sustain the combination given that Bollywood is obsessed with petite, size-zero figures now. Not to miss the visible male domination.

Puts in Neetu Chandra, who is already three movies old, "I am not following anyone. I have done three movies and the audiences have quite liked them. Now, I am getting solo roles as well. All the same, I feel that Garam Masala for a safer launch. It might not have worked had I gone solo."

Rahul Dholakia's Mumbai cutting is around the corner.

She also has her name associated with Adlabs Flat no 13 where she is paired
with Madhavan.

Then there is Khusarprasad Ka Bhoot. The work does speak, Neetu is making all
the right movies.

We've also heard there is little bit of Neetu in every role she does.

"In Oye Lucky..., I play a girl from a lower middle class background. I come from a middle class family in Bihar myself. So, in this respect I can relate with many things," says Neetu, who has given up her first love sports for movies.

"In India, for a woman it is difficult to pursue sports or take it up as a profession. Nevertheless, I recommend every girl to take up any sport. It not only helps physically but also adds a lot of push to your confidence."

An everyday writer
Gurdev Chauhan, a city-based author, believes in penning
down every minute detail of life

Not just happiness, at times problems too form a bond between human beings. "The kabhi khushi kabhi gum theory exists practically. Even the silliest of problems make people empathise with each other", avers Gurdev Chauhan, a city based author while sharing with us the central theme of his literary works.

Releasing his four books, Saptak, Aaspas, Chashamdeed, Desi Murg- Valiyati Baang, he said that it's the minor complexities of life that have always inspired him. "You need not wait for big things to happen in your life to learn lessons," says Chauhan.

Be it poetry, prose or satire, the writer has put forth his ideology through various text mediums, but certainly has a favourite, "Satire is a very strong medium of expression. People find it entertaining and in a light hearted mode they interpret the seriousness of topic written."

In his book, Desi Murg, Valiyati Baang, he writes about false religious believes and irresponsible political leaders, but with a pun intended.

A senior audit officer (retd), Gurdev has also written an account of his experience of Canada and America. "I stayed in the colony of blacks, Harlam in America. And more than anything else, it was shocking to realise that issues of caste and colour still exist in modern societies of the world." His poetry is based on human values and everyday instances of life. — TNS

Sound play
Mumbai-based documentary maker Rajesh Ved Prakesh
is in town to present a play based on Panchtantra
Ashima Sehajpal

A year back, theatre connoisseurs got some great news to rejoice about. In fact, the feat was so conspicuous that even the theatre complacent audience of the city took note of it. And a huge applause followed, a big enough encouragement for people involved in it to bring to the city something similar.

All right, we can see the art enthusiasts all-agog to hear the great news. So here it is—Rajesh Ved Prakash, face behind the highly successful play, Bible that was staged last year on the Ruby Jubilee of Sacred Heart Convet School is in city again to present a show. If then, he made a mammoth number of 1200 students act in it, this time it far less at 400 students, still a lot to give his efforts a standing ovation.

Here he talks more about his next venture, "I have directed some panchtantra stories this time and hope children will enjoy it. The light and sound show will be staged on November 22." So when teachers find it difficult to manage a 40 students class, how was it to direct ten times the number of kids?

"Exciting. For every student it was a recreational activity and they thoroughly enjoyed it. As for me, it was initially tough but then gradually students too realised coordination is the prerequisite for the play." So now, when it is ready to be presented, he enjoys the fond memories of how he made the play possible. "It was fun to see kids enacting the roles of lions and birds."

He has also directed documentaries and he feels that regardless of the medium in which you are presenting something, research is very vital. "Half of your work is done, if you are through with the homework. All that is left is implementing and improvising plans".

About the documentaries, he feels it is a medium that talks about social issues in an effective way, "I made one on female foeticide and on experimental basis put it on the U-tube. Next what happened was mind-boggling. So many people from the western world expressed their shock as for them, these issues dont exist."

A pass out from the Indian Theatre Department, 1990 batch, other than plays and documentaries, he is also into voice training programs at FM stations and feels that RJ;s job is the toughest in the entertainment industry. "It's not that simple at it seems. With no gestures and expressions, RJs play only with voice to entertain people. But considering the popularity of FM channels, I guess RJs are doing a good job.” The play will be staged at the Shivalik Public school, sector 41.

Itching is in your brain, not on the skin

Itching happens in your brain, not on your skin, according to researchers at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg in Germany. There are at least two types of itch-one that is induced by immune-response chemicals called histamines, and another that is not.

Now, a new study suggests that the body, and possibly the brain, react differently to these two itches. According to the researchers, the new finding could lead to more effective treatments for the sensation that drives a person to scratch. This is important because most itches do not respond to antihistamine medications, such as Benadryl.

The exact neural mechanism behind the sensation is not yet known, but "Itch happens in your brain, not on your skin." Neuroscientist Matthias Ringkamp of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, said the finding that there is a distinct response to the two itch types suggests that the desire to scratch is induced through at least two types of peripheral nerve fibres and their associated pathways.

"It's a great expansion on our own work," Nature quoted Ringkamp, as saying. The study was reported on 17 November during the Society for Neuroscience's annual meeting in Washington DC. — ANI

Shahnaz HusainSpice Up
Food for your skin

Shahnaz Husain

I have always maintained that internal health and external beauty are two sides of the same coin. The skin is called the mirror of the body and rightly so. No other organ reflects the state of internal health as faithfully as the skin does.

So, good health and physical fitness are imperative for a radiant skin. It is also directly related to the kind of nutrition the body receives. And for a wholesome nutrition one should include a variety of natural foods, like fresh fruits, raw salads, sprouts, yogurt, fresh fruit juices, green tea in your diet.

Drink plenty of water and have foods that are rich in fibre, they help to keep the system clean and this reflects on the skin.

And for external care, you need not look far. Right there, on your kitchen shelf are ingredients that can be used to add a glow to your skin.

Tone it right

Tone the skin daily with rose water. Toning stimulates blood circulation and makes your skin glow. Keep rose water in a bowl in the fridge and soak cotton wool pads in it. Use them to wipe the skin.

Then, stroke the skin gently with them. On the cheeks, use outward and upward movements, ending each stroke at the temples and applying gentle pressure.

On the forehead, start from the centre and go outwards on each side, again ending at the temples. For the chin, use circular movements. Pat the skin briskly too.

Rinse out

Exfoliate the skin twice a week. It can work wonders on your skin as it removes the dead skin cells and brightens the skin.

It also improves skin texture and produces an even colour tone. Exfoliation is a powerful cleansing procedure too, leaving the skin renewed, refreshed and glowing.


For a scrub, mix almond meal with yogurt. Dried and powdered lemon and orange peels can also be added. Apply it on the face and leave it on for a few minutes.

Then, rub gently, with small circular movements, washing off with water. Do not apply scrubs on pimples, acne or rash.

Mix honey with egg white and apply the mixture daily on the face. Wash it off after 20 minutes. It leaves the skin very soft and glowing.

Use a face mask twice a week. Mix half a cup of ripe papaya pulp with 2 teaspoons oatmeal, egg white and one teaspoon each of almond meal, honey and yogurt.

For dry skin, add egg yolk. It should be a thick paste that does not drip. Apply it on the face, avoiding the lips and area around eyes. Wash it off after 20 to 30 minutes.

Race Course
The cafeteria at the Vodafone office sure believes
in mixing savouries and sports. The eatery has
‘adventure’ as its decor theme.
Jigyasa Kapoor Chimra

Sunshine yellow, sports motifs, vibrant patterns, teamed with an adventure theme! No, we are not talking about a new restaurant that's open in the city, but we are here featuring an office canteen that spells elegance and sheer creativity.

Medallion, the office cafeteria of Vodafone Essar in Mohali, has all that an employee needs for a break.

Divided into varied segments, this cafeteria is built on a single theme - adventure sports. With life-size sports gear hanging on the walls and the roof, this place is sure a delight for anyone who likes sports. On one wall you can see a bicycle hanging, a glider on the roof and small cubicles on the wall has snowboots, rugby ball, baseball gloves and what not.

Talk food and the cafeteria whips up a meal befitting for a sportsperson's appetite. There are corners for all kinds of food, like the Munchin corner, only for snacks and quick bites.

Then, there is a corner for ice-creams and desserts and for the main course there are daily buffets for lunch and breakfast, serving different cuisines daily.

An ideal place for the employees to relax and recharge, and for outsiders to fume and fret with envy!

Drop in for brand bites

Drop In-34 gets a refurbished Food Court with branded eateries.
Drop In-34 gets a refurbished Food Court with branded eateries. Photo: S. Chandan

This one's for the foodies. The Chandigarh Industrial and Tourism Development Corporation has added another feather to its cap with the launch of the renovated and refurbished The Food Court at Drop-In, Sector 34.

Inaugurated by the chairman, CITCO, Ram Niwas (IAS), the Food Court promises to be a one-stop destination for all food lovers.

From gourmet coffee to fresh baked delights, the Food Court offers South Indian and Chinese cuisine to whet your appetite.

That's not all for all those gourmets who love the flavour of brands, at Food court you can sample fare from Café Coffee Day, Yo!China, Sundarams and Kreative foods.

Enthused by the success of the concept of Shop ‘n' Shop, in the food business CITCO has joined hands with leading private chains to bring to the residents of the southern sectors cuisines on a platter. — TNS

Kandla NijhowneBon Appetit
Fairy tale for taste buds
Kandla Nijhowne

Tiny, gorgeous, colourful mouthfuls, cup cakes are a visual treat,
even before they touch your taste buds! No wonder, they also go
by the name of fairy cakes!

They are an all-time favourite for a children's party and a guaranteed hit for a tea- time spread. Now, if you enquire about their nutritive value or health benefits, I shall go tongue-tied and pretend I'm hard of hearing!

Never mind good sense, and no need to wait for an occasion! Just go ahead and tuck into these Liliputan lovelies!

Apple and cherry cup cakes

225 gm unsalted butter (room temperature)

215 gm powdered sugar

225 gm maida

1 ½ tsp baking powder

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 - 2 tbsp milk

2 medium golden apples

4-6 tbsp sugar (grain)

1 tbsp brandy (optional)


Peel, chop and gently cook apples in a small pan with sugar to taste. Remove from heat until slightly soft. Drain and cool the fruit, reserving all the apple liquid. In a separate bowl, cream the butter with sugar & vanilla until light & fluffy. Gently mix in the beaten egg & fold in the sifted flour with a metal spoon.

Stir the cooled apple pieces into cake mixture & add a tablespoon or so of milk if required to acquire a slight dropping consistency. Spoon mixture into the 12 muffin cases & fill until three quarters full. Cook on the middle shelf for 15-20 minutes or until lightly golden. Test with skewer.

Remove tray from oven and leave for a few minutes. Transfer cupcakes onto wire tray to cool completely. Make a slight hollow on the top of each cake, using a sharp knife. Fill with either whipped cream, stewed fruit or jam, mixing it with some of the fragrant apple syrup for added flavour.

Ultimate choco cup cake

1b cups all-purpose flour

¼ tsp baking soda

2 tsp baking powder

¾ cup cocoa powder

Pinch of salt

¾ cup butter, softened

1½ cups powdered sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

¾ -1 cup milk


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a muffin pan with paper cases. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the
vanilla. Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk; beat well. Fill the muffin
cups 3/4 full.

Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Decorate with melted chocolate, thinned with a little cream. For a kiddy treat, you may top the cakes with gems or colourful sprinkles.

Treat for eyes & ears
Bon Jovi & Big B to perform for a cause

Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi

On December 7 Mumbai, Hong Kong and Los Angeles will simultaneously experience the power of music and entertainment as American rock singer Bon Jovi and Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan along with other stars take to the stage for the Live Earth India concert.

Joining them will be many celebrities like Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Anoushka Shankar, Arjun Rampal, Bipasha Basu, Farhan Akhtar, Hrithik Roshan, Jalebee Cartel, Preity Zinta, Roger Waters, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Shiamak Davar, Sunidhi Chauhan, Sonu Nigam, Shaan and Vishal and Shekhar.

In its second year, the concert will see collaborations of western and Indian artists as they perform in different countries simultaneously.

Live Earth India will highlight personal and policy solutions to the climate crisis, offer support for India's important environmental issues and causes, and provide a platform for India to solidify its leadership role on climate issues.

"Our mission is to leverage the power of music and entertainment to focus the world's attention on the most pressing environmental issues of our time and then actively affect change," said Live Earth founder Kevin Wall in a press release.

"The addition of these celebrated and influential artists will increase the force of our event and shine a spotlight on the challenges and opportunities surrounding climate change issues in India," he added.

Produced globally by Control Room and in partnership with Wizcraft International Entertainment, the concert will reach millions of viewers worldwide through three of Star's channels - Star Plus in India, UK and the Middle East, Star World in South East Asia, Hong Kong and India and Channel V in India.

Highlighting the cause and the channel's association with the concert Star India Pvt Ltd's Chief Executive Officer Uday Shankar said: "We are proud to be associated with this event, as it echoes our philosophy of improving the quality of life on our planet through building positive action for our environment."

"We have always been committed to improving the emotional lives of our viewers through the content that we air and this is an extension of this endeavour to improve the physical quality of people's lives," he added.

The tickets for the concert are available online at and are priced at Rs.625, Rs.1250 and Rs.2500.

Best of all
Actors John Malkovich and Leonardo DiCaprio
bagged top honours at this year's GQ Men
of the Year Awards in Los Angeles

John MalkovichLeonardo DiCaprio
John Malkovich and (right) Leonardo DiCaprio

The Titanic star received the Leading Man trophy, while Malkovich was named Mad Genius of the Year.

U.S. President-elect Barack Obama was honoured with Game Changer of the Year award and actor Jon Hamm received the Breakout award.

Olympic champion Michael Phelps walked away with Golden Boy of the Year award.

The main list of winners is as follows: Leading Man: Leonardo DiCaprio Game
Changer: Barack Obama Breakout: Jon Hamm Golden Boy: Michael Phelps Mad
Genius of the Year: John Malkovich Obsession of the Year: Megan Fox Drama
Queen of the Year: Sean Penn Screen Idol of the Year: James Franco Tough
Guys of the Year: The Wire Writers Mogul of the Year: Seth MACFarlane Prick
of the Year: Gordon Ramsay.

On your toes
Pitt says the kids keep Jolie and him on the feet all day long

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt says he may end up in the grave as his kids seem to have resolved to 'kill' him and his partner Angelina Jolie by keeping them on their feet at all times.

The Oceans Eleven star joked on The Oprah Winfrey Show that the kids seemed to have worked out a plan to make sure their parents were not spared even one idle moment.

He said: "They're trying to kill us! They really are. We'll get them to bed and one will show up about a half hour later. I know they've got shifts, they got it worked out."

The 44-year-old heartthrob further insists that he's a strong daddy and a hard one to knock out when it comes to coping up with kids.

Pitt told: "I'm tough as nails. I'm impervious to poo, snot, urine, vomit. You can't get me. You cannot break me down."

Mmp Papi not an ode to Adnan

Britney Spears
Britney Spears

American pop princess Britney Spears never wrote an ode to her paparazzo ex-boyfriend Adnan Ghalib, revealed her song-writing partner in her forthcoming album Circus.

Lyricist Nicole Morier revealed that the Toxic singer had got the inspiration for her album track Mmm Papi from her tumultuous romance with the British photographer.

"It's about someone I'm sure you can guess," Morier had said in an interview. "It's a gift to him (Ghalib). She is crazy for him," a source had added.

But Morier has claimed that she never hinted to the reporter that the song was based on Spears' relationship with the snapper - insisting he wasn't part of the singer's life when she started penning her new material.

"I never said that to Us Weekly! The song is definitely not about Adnan and in the whole time I worked with her last spring and summer I never once saw that guy," Morier said.

"We strictly wrote the song for fun. The Mmm Papi part came out of Mmm Papa Luv U and I came up with it because the track was a fun up beat track and we wanted to do something crazy like mmmpapamowow," she stated.

The songwriter further admitted that she wants the speculation surrounding the star to stop, especially since she Spears seems to have finally got her life and career back on track.

"Please be kind to Britney and I and post this correction. She was oh so sweet
and professional to work with, and I believe she's really gotten her life together,"
Morier added.

Parent trap

Reese Witherspoon
Reese Witherspoon

Reese Witherspoon has nothing but admiration for her ex-husband Ryan Phillippe's parenting skills. Witherspoon and Phillippe split in 2007, but they still maintain a pleasant relationship for the sake of their children Ava and Deacon.

"My ex-husband is very involved in raising our children.
We're very lucky because we both grew up in working
families in middle America. We're on the same page that
way," said Reese.

"When we're with our children, we're very good about checking ourselves. I'm teaching the children what we were taught,” she added.

Paris Hilton Dus pe bas

Socialite heiress Paris Hilton has ended her 10-month
romance with guitarist-boyfriend Benji Madden.

"It's definitely over. Paris thinks the world of Benji, but
it wasn't meant to be," said a source close to Hilton.

The couple started dating February this year after
they increasingly began spending time together when
visiting her best friend Nicole Richie, who has a
11-month-old daughter, Harlow with Madden's twin
brother Joel.                                              Paris Hilton

David Beckham Becks’ game of chance

Soccer ace David Beckham was reportedly spotted getting cozy with Francesca Leiweke, as they watched an LA Lakers basketball game together.

Beckham had always been spotted sneaking glances at cheerleaders. Last time Becks was alleged to have bedded Rebecca Loos.

“Victoria is stunned that people have suggested David might be off as soon as he got the opportunity," a friend of theirs was quoted as saying. — IANS, ANI

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