Goddess gracious
Artisans have perfected the traditional image of Durga over the years, but contemporary art has given it a whole new dimension, writes Nirupama Dutt

THE image of Durga or Shakti is built every year in clay and craftspersons have perfected this art over hundreds of years. It is built with care and minute details, only to be submerged in the waters at the end of the Durga Puja festivities.

Durga reinterpreted
To asura, with love

Colours of Ramayana
Themes from the epic have remained a favourite subject in works of art over the centuries, writes Kanwarjit Singh Kang
HE Ramayana has had tremendous influence on the Indian culture. Themes related to Rama have inspired innumerable poets, bards, dramatists, painters, sculptors, muralists and craftsmen through the ages, not only in India but also in several countries of South-East Asia.

King of Pop on canvas
The tasks that most women in India perform as part of their daily routine are a source of income for them abroad, reports Kinjal Dagli Shah
ING of Pop Michael Jackson has been brought to life in 12 mixed media paintings here which capture his journey from obscurity to stardom, diseases and tragic death that remains a mystery.

Women in control
Women councillors in Karnataka are accessible and solution oriented. They solve problems of common people and those living in poor areas, writes Taru Bahl
AVI Shetty had been struggling for three years to get his ration card allotted in Ramnagaram, a town some 50 km from Bangalore. When someone recommended he should meet the local woman councillor to get the work done, he was sceptical.

Breaking shackles
Muslim families of Malerkotla have shed their conservative attitude. Today women of the community get the best of education, reports Shariq Majeed
WENTY-seven years ago, when Saira, a Muslim divorcee, started a beauty parlour in the once conservative town of Malerkotla, no one would have thought that she was making a wise choice.


Life on new planet?
Astronomers believe that a new planet detected outside our solar system may be a habitable one
t is not too hot and not too cold, and astronomers believe that a new planet detected outside our solar system may have a temperature that is just right to support life.

In Brahma’s abode
One of the oldest cities of India, Pushkar lies on the shores of the Pushkar lake.
The date of its origin is not known, but according to a legend, it was created by
Lord Brahma. The only temple dedicated to the deity in India is located here,
writes Mukesh Khosla
AJASTHAN offers glimpses of a bygone era of princes, palaces and medieval fortresses, together with the resplendent havelis, which are an architectural marvel.

Voices of the silenced people
Several Bollywood films that premiered in Toronto recently drew unique portraits of Mumbai, besides redefining the boundaries of Hindi cinema, writes Saibal Chatterjee

BHOPAL-born artist Baaraan Ijlal brings to light the oral tradition of fable telling, exemplified by the Arabian Nights tales into narrative paintings in her maiden exposition that was held in New Delhi recently.

‘Robot was a tough film to make’
Aishwarya Rai, who is back with her latest release, tells Jyothi Venkatesh that an actor is a puppet in the director’s hands
ishwarya Rai is, perhaps, the only married actress who has been able to break the myth that married actresses cannot survive in Bollywood or have to make do with roles that require them to play the young mother, like say Kajol in films like Fanaa, U Me Aur Hum, My Name is Khan and We Are Family.

Bollywood bug bites Hollywood
The growing popularity of Indian films worldwide has made superstars from the West warm up to Bollywood, writes Priyanka Sharma
ollywood seems to have become a hotspot for Hollywood actors. From Sylvester Stallone, Kylie Minogue to Brandon Routh, Ben Kingsley and now Drew Barrymore, superstars from the West have started showing interest in Hindi films.


TELEVISION: Charming sisters

Globoscope: Poor plot
by Ervell E. Menezes

Food talk: Fish fervour
by Pushpesh Pant

Don’t compromise on product quality
by Pushpa Girimaji

ULTA PULTA: Luck by stars
by Jaspal Bhatti


Inimitable Bard of Avon
Reviewed by Shelley Walia
Shakespeare: A New Biography
By Bhim S. Dahiya.
The Shakespeare Association, Kurukshetra.
Pages 168. Rs 495.

Visionary President
Reviewed by Puneetinder Kaur Sidhu
Spirit of India
By APJ Abdul Kalam.
Rajpal Publishers. 
Pages 180. Rs 195.

Modern age Don Quixote
Reviewed by Deepa Gopala Krishnan
The Mythologist
By Vamsee Juluri.
Penguin Books. Pages 269. Rs 299.

A woman’s odyssey
Reviewed by Sumit Ahlawat
The Westward Traveller
By Durgabati Ghose. Trans. Somdatta Mandal.
Orient BlackSwan. Pages 104. Rs 195.

Nowhere people
Reviewed by Rajesh Kumar Aggarwal
Stateless in South Asia: The Chakmas between Bangladesh and India
By Deepak K. Singh.
Sage. Pages 289. Rs 695.

Insights into Islam
Humra Quraishi
M. I. H. Farooqi’s Muslim Societies— Rise and Fall examines the changes in the community
UCKNOW-based Dr M. I. H. Farooqi is a well-known botanical scientist who retired from the National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow, as head of its Plant Chemistry division. He has authored several books, the latest being Muslim Societies – Rise And Fall (Sidrah Publishers, Lucknow).

Visual vistas
Nonika Singh
N a world inhabited by people who know little and go to town bragging about it, Mahendra Kumar, noted theatre person and ace designer, believes that one must first know a lot and then share only a miniscule part of it. No wonder, he feels, "Restraint is the basic principle not only of design and theatre but also of life itself."

Poetry unbound
Reviewed by Randeep Wadehra
A Sinner Says
by Sanjiv Bhatla.
Crabwise Press.
Pages 71. Rs 150.
Writing Love
Ed. Ashmi Ahluwalia.
Pages xii+100. Rs 195.
by Jeewan Dutta.
Aravali Books International.
Pages 88. Rs 125.