Man with the Golden Globe
A.R. RahmanThe soul-stirring melodies of A.R. Rahman have won him international acclaim. Nonika Singh writes about this musical genius
T 25, when A.R. Rahman burst on the national scene with Roja, he was hailed as a prodigy. Today at 43, he is arguably India’s best-known music composer and the most visible face of Indian music. He is being acclaimed as a genius. Yes, by a grateful nation basking in the glory of the Golden Globe award that he has brought to his country for the first time in history. Only now it’s not only a nation that is applauding but international community, too. Post-Golden Globe award that he got for Best Original Score in British director Danny Boyle’s movie Slumdog Millionaire, the world is saying, "Now we all know A.R. Rahman – but we probably should have a long time ago."

Kathakali’s unsung heroes
Make-up in Kathakali is a prolonged, arduous and meticulous art, which begins hours before the actual staging of the play, writes N. Muraleedharan
HEIR deft strokes transform a frail, earthly figure into the mighty Indian demigod Hanuman. Their soft touches can change a scrawny pork-marked face into that of an ‘apasara’.

Security for the seniors
The government should look after senior citizens and provide them with social security. Elected civic groups of men and women, with the help of panchayati raj bodies, the law and doctors, should come forward to serve the elderly, says Triloki Das Khandelwal
OW that the elections to state assemblies are over, the new democratic governments should plan and work for the implementation of the promises made. Some of these might have been made as a part of the electoral campaign.

Saving red panda
Tanshi Pradhan
ikkim is making efforts to save the endangered red panda from extinction. The Himalayan Zoological Park (HZP), Gangtok, in collaboration with the state Forest Department has initiated a programme for the conservation and breeding of red panda at a natural enclosure in the park.

Get your shave right
Use a new razor head once every eight shaves. A thick brush and shaving paste will make the tiniest hidden hair soft, says Hector Choksi
ET us say that the average man shaves every day, and takes 10 minutes to do it. We will subtract a few days for those Saturdays he gets up, looks in the mirror, and says: "Oh, to hell with it today—it is Saturday."

Monet’s muse
Rajesh Krishan visits the village of Giverny in France, famous for impressionist painter Claude Monet’s home and gardens, which were also the subject of his paintings
FRENCH and art are synonymous with each other. French people’s passion for art is probably the only thing that surpasses their passion for ‘men in blue’ (French football team).

Double delight
HAt once scorched the silver screen will now enthrall the small screen audiences. Hugely popular Bollywood film Seeta Aur Geeta, starring Hema Malini in a double role, is now being converted into a TV series.

A fairy tale
The rags-to-riches story of Jamaal in Slumdog Millionaire is perfect antidote 
to the discontent of our times, says Christina Patterson

T’S visually stunning. It’s gripping. It’s gobbling up awards. And it’s the feel-good film of the year. Yes, if you want to escape the horror of a British winter at a time when each bulletin brings news so bad it would, if it wasn’t you and your friends losing their jobs, be boring, then the answer is this: Slumdog Millionaire.

We need more short films: Anupam Kher
Alkesh Sharma
ORE documentaries and short films should be made as multiplexes provide space for such movies and such endeavours will provide opportunities for struggling young artistes in the country, says Anupam Kher, who was last seen in critically acclaimed film A Wednesday.


TELEVISIONIn Buddha’s footsteps

HOLLYWOOD HUES: Anatomy of divorce
by Ervell E. Menezes

Food talk: Vada break
by Pushpesh Pant

CONSUMER RIGHTS: Insurance is car owner’s right
by Pushpa Girimaji

by David Bird

ULTA PULTAStylish scamsters
by Jaspal Bhatti


Space odyssey
Rumina Sethi
The Woman who Thought she was a Planet and Other Stories
by Vandana Singh.
Zubaan and Penguin.
Pages 206. Rs 275.

Books received

Ringside view of labour issues
V. Krishna Ananth
Privatisation and Labour Restructuring
by Gopal Ganesh.
 Academic Foundation.
Pages 292. Rs 795.

Wake-up call as gift
Priyanka Singh
The Gift
by Cecelia Ahern.
Pages 305. Rs 195.

A committed crusader
Laxmi Kant Verma
M. R. Pai: The Story of an Uncommon Common Man
by S. V. Raju.
Strand Book Stall, Mumbai.
Pages 185. Rs 100.

Birth of a tragedy
Harbans Singh
Guilty Men of India’s Partition
by Ram Manohar Lohia.
Rupa and Co.
Pages 108. Rs 295.

Future war vignette
Kanchan Mehta
Line of Control
by Mainak Dhar.
Pages 314. Rs 250.

Many faces of John Mortimer
John Walsh writes about the man who straddled the worlds of literature, law and politics with elan
IR John Mortimer, Queen’s Counsel, barrister, Commander of the Order of the British Empire, author, playwright, champagne socialist, wit, defender of free speech, wine connoisseur, devoted luncher, national treasure and lord of Chiantishire, has died at the age of 85.

Rising star
Katy Guest
S the youngest winner of the T. S. Eliot Prize, at 30, Jen Hadfield is also a relative newcomer. The £15,000 cheque that she collected recently has previously been awarded to Seamus Heaney, Carol Ann Duffy and Ted Hughes — though never to Andrew Motion, the chair of this year’s judges.

Academic jailed for vandalising rare books
Terri Judd
ARHAD Hakimzadeh, a wealthy academic and publisher, loved nothing more than caring for the books in his personal library and showing them off to fellow scholars. Even on his wedding night, his obsession was such that his bride was left waiting as he dusted off the covers of his precious tomes.


  • The Myth Buster — 150 Great Misconceptions Clarified
    by Dr. N.C. Asthana and Dr. Anjali Nirmal.
     Sterling Paperbacks.
    Pages 322. Rs 250.

  • The Global Employment Challenge
    by Ajit K. Ghose, Noman Majid and Christoph Ernst.
    Academic Foundation.
    Pages 290. Rs 1295.