Mysticism to modernity
Lhasa is today awash with modernity, wherein traditional values only seem to be an appendage. Pratibha Chauhan reports on the town’s development after a recent visit
A view of the museum at Lhasa
OARDING the flight to Lhasa filled me with the excited anticipation of a mystical experience in the land of the Buddha. Particularly, for somebody who has lived in Dharamsala and heard from nostalgic Tibetan refugees about the grandeur of Potala Palace and effervescence of Tibetan spiritualism, Lhasa conjured visions of maroon-robed, prayer wheel-rotating monks and nuns milling around in a landscape dotted with monasteries.
Festive fervour
Seat of spirituality
Track to technology

A legacy that comes alive
Tales of impregnable and invincible forts stand out in the crisply edited documentary series on these majestic marvels of India, says Nonika Singh
WE see the monuments ... we don’t discover them." This may be the lament of noted theatre personality and documentary maker Gurcharan Singh Chani. But as he, along with his son Gyandev Singh, has just completed a 26-part documentary series Bharat Ke Durg on India’s majestic forts, the forts have not only been revealed to him but also, he promises, will be a revelation to the viewers.

Political puppets
If one were to go by the Raajneeti narrative, women exist in Indian politics only to consolidate the power built by patriarchal and feudal forces. They have no standing of their own, writes Pamela Philipose
rakash Jha’s Raajneeti, riding on the aura of India’s First Family in politics, has been bringing in the crowds in a manner that recalls a pre-multiplex, pre-popcorn era, when audiences actually thronged the single-screen cinema halls and catcalled or whistled from the front stalls.

Agony of moms-in-law
Nivedita Choudhuri
N Indian families, mothers-in-law are usually described as shrewish and the source of all domestic conflict. However, reality and popular perception are often poles apart as many mothers-in-law maintain that they are hounded by their daughters-in-law.

For love of velvet
Go for velvet dresses this winter season, says Homai Sagar
ELVeT is the new fabric for fall 2010. It is stepping on silk’s toes this winter. All the Indian design doyens love it. So it can never be far from a catwalk comeback. It is no wonder then that velvet would claim its place as this season’s most beloved material.

Half way to heaven
The small Himalayan town of Askot in Pithoragarh is situated amidst huge
forest tracts and a breathtaking valley. This tiny town also lies on famous
the Kailash-Mansarovar pilgrimage route, writes Tanushree Podder

steady drizzle turned the dry mountain rivulets into gurgling streams as our car negotiated the steep bends on the mountain road. Clouds played hide and seek above our head, throwing interesting patterns on the road.

Kathak yoga for a fit body & soul
Shilpa Raina
OVE over monotonous fitness regimes. US-based kathak maestro Chitresh Das has been popularising the concept of kathak yoga, which he describes as a "union between the mind, body and soul" and an excellent "form of a cardio-vascular exercise".

Bollywood new and improved
The 35th Toronto International Film Festival has put its stamp of endorsement on the emergence of Mumbai cinema’s ‘new wave’, writes Saibal Chatterjee
HE 35th edition of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), running from September 9 to 19, marks a fresh beginning for North America’s foremost cinema event. On the festival’s first Sunday, TIFF will formally move into Bell Lightbox, its spanking new permanent home that was four years in the making.

It’s raining sequels
Bollywood gets high on sequels, a la Hollywood, writes Robin Bansal
HE Hindi boxoffice will soon be laden with sequels like Race 2, Don 2 and the third instalments of Dhoom, Golmaal and Phoonk as Bollywood walks in Hollywood’s footsteps to make filmmakers feel secure and keep a captive audience in good cheer.


TELEVISION: Starry regimen

Globoscope: Of thrills & spills
by Ervell E. Menezes

Food talk: Baked surprise
by Pushpesh Pant

Limit deposits in small banks
by Pushpa Girimaji

by David Bird

ULTA PULTA: Rise and live
by Jaspal Bhatti


Persistence of discrimination
Reviewed by Shelley Walia
Colorblind: The Rise of Post-Racial Politics and the Retreat from Racial Equity
By Tim Wise.
City Lights Books, San Francisco.
Pages 213. $14.95.

Books received: english

Great epic revisited
Reviewed by Harbans Singh
Before He was God: Ramayana — Reconsidered, Recreated
By Ram Varma.
Pages 326. Rs 995.

The irrepressible Zohra
Reviewed by Aradhika Sharma
Close-Up: Memoirs of a Life on Stage & Screen
By Zohra Segal. 
Women Unlimited.
Pages 292. Rs 1,448.

Pain and anguish of an ‘untouchable’
Reviewed by Kanwalpreet
Changiya Rukh: Against the Night — An Autobiography
By Balbir Madhopuri.
Translated from Punjabi by Tripti Jain.
Oxford University Press.
Pages 215. Rs 395.

Ode to iconoclasts
Nirupama Dutt
The recent retrospective on two famous writers, Saadat Hasan Manto and Ismat Chughtai, was a lively celebration of their contribution
ETROSPECTIVES of films are a regular feature but August-end saw a unique literary retrospective at the India Habitat Centre in New Delhi with a day and a half devoted to deliberating on the contribution of two towering writers of Urdu fiction, Ismat Chughtai (1911-1991) and Saadat Hasan Manto (1912-1955).

A man of roots

Nonika Singh
HEN a man decides to pen his autobiography, it would seem as if he is trying to seal his greatness. However, the Mansa-based noted theatreperson Ajmer Singh Aulakh, rooted to terra firma, nurses no such delusions of grandeur.

Bringing up Chandigarh
Randeep Wadehra
Corb’s Capitol 
By Sangeet Sharma.
Abhishek Publications. 
Pages xii+230. Rs 295.
Monkey on My Back
By Dr Chandra Shekhar Tripathi.
Frog Books.
Pages 231. Rs 250
Sacred Longings
By Renee Singh. Aesthetics.
Pages 140. Rs 250.