Live it…. with yoga 
The new generation is plagued with problems alien to the earlier ones, but they have found a solution in the age-old practice of yoga

Fighting flab, easing palpitations or warding off stress, the new generation is tacking newer challenges, although one cure that they are turning to is not all that new — yoga.

Yoga is no more just for the old; from teens preparing for board examinations to freshers in the college wanting to look slim, yoga is fast catching up with Gen Y.

Shefali Verma picked up yoga at the age of 17. So enchanted was she from the change that it brought to her life, that she decided to learn it professionally and adopt it a career. She went all the way to Kerala to learn at the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres. “I wanted to learn from the best place possible and I am so happy with my decision. It’s just not the body, but many different aspects of my personality that have been groomed by yoga,” says Shefali, a freelance yoga instructor who loves her work.

For Shikha Aggarwal, first-year B Com student, yoga helped in battling weight problems. She lost 15-kg weight in three months and has been able to maintain it! “Yoga not only helped me lose weight, but also improved my skin. It also keeps my mind relaxed.”

Geetu Sharma suffered health problems in her early twenties and she has been able to battle it out by empowering herself with yoga. “I had neck trouble, had palpitations and was looking for a permanent cure. Yoga came to my rescue. The results were gradual, but sure-shot,” says Geetu, a resident of Sector 40, who is happy practising yoga at her home.

One among the many benefits of yoga is that once one has learnt it, one does not require many frills. While at home or park or even a hotel room, one can freely do it. A job that required travelling was the reason why Debasish Mazumdar took up yoga. Away for home for 20 days in a month, yoga sure helped him beat the stress. “Right now I am in Guwahati and will be home only by the month end. Though I miss my weight training, I make up by doing yoga here. And, I have a much more flexible body than before,” he shares over the phone.

Youngsters discovering the benefits of this ancient art is nothing new for yoga instructors in the tricity. Nalini, who runs yoga classes in Panchkula, gets many young clients. “Increasingly, yoga is being adopted by the youth for a fit body, mind and soul. I get lots of class 11 and 12 students who come seeking respite from the stress of board exams and pressure of making career choices,” she says.

Well, be it deteriorating health due to sedentary lifestyles fed by fast food or agitated minds distracted by instant media, yoga is increasingly becoming the slow but sure way to a healthy body and mind!

Body over mind

“Yoga is new, its yog that we have practised for ages,” says Ashish Bhatt, yoga instructor with Burn Gym & Spa-11, Panchkula. Today body matters over spirit, fitness over spirituality. So yoga has undergone a transformation to suit the times. “Yog means to connect atma to parmatma. The body was earlier just the means to achieve this state. If yog was say 75 per cent spiritual practice and 25 per cent bodily, yoga is the opposite today. But then that’s what the youth demands and yoga gives it,” he avers. 

WIP – Work in peace!
A major part of our day is spent with colleagues at work. Here’s a quick check on what various organisations do to keep the atmosphere congenial and friendly
Jasmine Singh

The word office can have different connotations. We can see many heads nod in approval! Now, here is how people might look at a workplace - a place to earn of course, a place to chit-chat, make new friends or a place to de-stress. Some even look at it as an escape route! Whatever meaning it holds, this is a place where we end up spending maximum time and energy. And colleagues are the closest people you can gossip with about the outside world. So, a good rapport with the workers around is a necessity and need. Many corporate offices have now started small initiatives to promote pleasant working environment in the office.

Gobind Pandey, regional head HDFC Bank, lists what the organisation does to promote healthy working ambience where people are not breaking each other’s heads! “The first thing that we have done is ensured that people working in my organisation have proper work stations that are sufficiently lit and airy. In addition to this, we meet regularly to discuss which employee is happy and which one is hassled. Of course, encouraging them to eat together in canteen also breaks barriers.”

Chit-chat with colleagues, share few gossip stories, work, laugh and by the end of the day you are more or less sorted out! Connect Wireline and Broadband has introduced a ‘Best Buddy’ Initiative wherein co-workers can find out more about each other through Friday meetings and fun contests. Says Prem Ojha, business head, Connect, wireline and broadband, “Knowing a colleague makes the workplace enjoyable and thus helps retain employees. Keeping this in mind, we promote ‘Best Buddy Initiative’ where employees answer interesting questions about each other - whether they know where they reside, where they did their schooling from etc. In addition to this, we highly encourage employees to wear a smiley badge in the morning. If on any day a colleague is found not sporting one, we expect his colleagues and team members to handle his work.”

Think of a scenario where you have to tolerate your colleague for eight hours, of a scenario where you are helplessly looking at the watch to show time-up! Niharika Kapoor, working as second relationship manager with Karmic Notes, Mohali, laughs thinking about this scenario. “I would rather quit my job, I can’t think of working in a place that suffocates; where my colleagues are not friendly and always crying about one thing or the other.” She adds, “I bring popular cartoon DVDs every Wednesday and Friday. So, one department collects around the small home theatre that we have made in our office and watch the film. It is so relaxing. We ask a small group of 4-5 members to order food for rest of the staff on one given day and then everyone has a small get together. This is a sure-shot way of bridging any gap between co-workers,” she smiles.

Bond Building

Make your office friendly by using some fun tips

Organise a company outing - Suggest a bowling outing or a visit to the local bar for happy hours. If doing something after work is out of question, then try organising a lunch event…which could be as simple as going out to lunch together.

Bring in pizzas - Check out the smiles that occur when people see that you've brought pizzas. Rest of the day, the entire conversation goes around yum slices!

Make a conscious effort to befriend others - It's easy to stick to a routine and bury ourselves in work…but take the leap. Make some new friends.

Encourage your employees to take small breaks, this increases productivity at work.

Give small weekly gifts like tickets for movies, food coupons or travel vouchers to your employees.

Coming soon
Stage for women

Get set to experience a theatre festival especially dedicated to women directors who have made their mark to change the dynamics of theatre with their creativity and ingenuity.

The Tagore Theatre Society, under the aegis of Department of Cultural Affairs, Chandigarh Administration, is organising the three-day Women Directors Theatre Festival starting from May 30 at Tagore Theatre-18.

Directors from the National School of Drama will showcase their significant contributions. On the opening day of the festival, a Hindi play Roop Aroop, directed by Tripurari Sharma will be staged. Tripurari is a playwright, translator and director of repute and has conducted theatre workshops in India and abroad. She has written and directed plays like Bahu, Birsa Munda, Aks Paheli, Banjh Ghati Sazaa, Kath ki Gadi and Lal Lal Hathi.

The play, Episode in the Life of an Author (Hindi) by Bharti Sharma will be staged on May 31. Active in theatre since 1982, she has acted in nearly 50 plays, working with eminent directors like Satyadev Dubey, Ratan Thiyam, Ram Gopal Bajaj, Mohan Maharishi, Fritz Bennewitz and Barry John; has performed at international Theatre Festivals in Tunisia, Algeria, Rome, Syria and Kuwait. She has acted, anchored, written produced and directed features, films and documentaries.

On the concluding day, director Maya Krishna Rao’s play Quality Street (English) will be staged. Maya Krishna Rao is a significant presence in the contemporary Indian theatre, and is most known for her one-woman shows. She acts, sings, dances, creates her own scripts and directs herself. Each show has a distinct language of theatre, ranging from dance theatre, to a rock concert. The uniqueness of Maya’s performances derives from her training in kathakali. In her creative work, this allows her to straddle comfortably the worlds of dance and theatre.

Passes for the theatre festival are available at Tagore Theatre, Tourist Information Centre Sukhna Lake and the office of the Chandigarh Sangeet Natak Akademi. — TNS

At a glance

Date Play Director

May 30 Roop Aroop Tripurari Sharma

(in Hindi)

May 31 Episode in the Bharti Sharma

Life of an Author

(In Hindi)

June 1 Quality Street Maya Krishna Rao

(In English)

In the Web again
Manpriya Singh

Peter Parker is coming (rather climbing) to India first. The New York City, hometown of Spiderman's fictional universe, waits to watch the fourth franchise for exactly four days. And for those who felt a little left out of The Avengers Party, The Amazing Spiderman awaits! Is it because the film features Irrfan Khan as one of the baddies or is releasing in four languages or there is the Friday at play?

"Never mind, all I know is I'm excited about catching it first. Each of the Spiderman sequels has broken records before and the best part is that this movie has an India connection; catching it before people in the US makes it even more exciting," exclaims Mrigya Samyal, final-year B.Com student, DAV-10.

It's the Marvel character for kids, Andrew Garfield for girls (hitherto Toby Maguire) and action for guys that works out fine. A month before, it's all over the Internet and all the working sites. Among the countless fan pages and community sites, there's a Spiderman India, Indian Spiderman, India's Spiderman, while The Amazing Spiderman clocks a seven-digit figure! The Spiderman in Punjabi is viral on YouTube, with exponential hits and clicks. Says Neelam Garg, former Mrs India runners-up, "I have watched all the Spiderman sequels. More than great, this one is surprising news. The last sequel was full of many characters, I would say second Spiderman was the best, but I can't wait to catch this one." No prizes for guessing why!

"It's like a Yash Chopra movie releasing in Manhattan first and Mumbai later. Whatever are the reasons, but surprising it is. Whether you are a hardcore Spiderman fan or not, you'll be tempted to catch it before if you have the opportunity," says Dheeraj Mittal, law student, Panjab University. He adds, "But for some reason I feel after July 3, when it releases in the US, it will be an even play. Anyways, it I the first-day-first-show and first three day shows are likely to jam-packed."

The reasons might vary, but the fact of the matter is that everyone is curious, one way or the other. Says Glory Khanna, psychology student, DAV College, "More than anything else, I'm curious to know why they are releasing the movie in India before."

Who hasn't cribbed over late releases to the extended families abroad? This is your chance. This time, Peter Parker tries to figure out all the 'whys' is his life. A flashback journey that tries to find why he was raised by aunt May and Uncle Ben and not his mother and father!

Meanwhile, the officials are confident of the obvious. "Indian audience will enjoy the new reboot of the franchise even more because they are watching it before the people in US." To be precise, four days before, starting June 29! As Mrigya says, "It's worth to show-off when it comes to watching a movie first." Don't we all do it? 

Spiderman is back. And this time, people in India get to see the sequel — The Amazing Spiderman — of the movie first up… 

Spiderman trivia

The original writers of Spiderman conceived of the character as an orphan being raised by his uncle and aunt. Someone who led a normal life to some extent and dealt with ordinary troubles of adolescence, in addition to the responsibility and role of a costumed crime fighter.

The character has been developed from a shy, nerdy high school student to slightly more outgoing college student.

Spiderman remains undoubtedly one of the most popular and commercially successful super-heroes. No wonder he is Marvel Comics' flagship character as well was company mascot and has appeared in several forms of media, including, television shows, movies series, syndicated paper comic strips et al. 

Par Excellence
Create good impact
Jesse Grewal

The moment of truth in a golf swing is the impact. A good way of learning to swing correctly is to know and create the correct position at impact and reverse engineer our swing to do this job. At impact, the left hand (for right-handed players) is flat or slightly bowed with the back of the hand facing the target (picture1).

If you are wearing a watch it should face the target. The right hand would maintain an angle and the palm of the right hand would be facing the target. The hands would be leading the club head.

An impact bag helps us create this position. While hitting into an impact bag the shaft of the club should hit the bag a fraction before the club head hits the bag. The club face should be square at impact. If you do not have an impact bag you could use a tyre or an air bag stuffed with clothes. Make soft swings trying to create this position at impact.

Incorrect impact is either when the right hand applies force and throws the club head out to early. The club head would hit the bag first and would have passed the hands at impact. This is called ‘casting’. The

ball tends to fly to the left and also loses distance as the loft of the club increases leading to a higher ball flight (picture 2). The opposite to this is when the left hand comes in to impact open or facing the right side. This drops the club inside the line and opens the club face at impact (picture 3). This leads to weak shots to the right. To compensate for this, the player begins to throw the right hand at the ball causing push hooks.

Good impact is created by a correct pulling action of the left side of the body with a perfectly timed release. Use an impact bag to train your swing and find the right timing.

(Grewal has coached several national champions and professionals apart from being coach of the Indian golf team for the Eisenhower Cup (World Cup) in 2008. He is currently the Director of National Golf Academy of India and CGA Hero Honda Golf Academy. If you have any queries get in touch with him at

Doc Talk
Wash with care
Dr Vikas Sharma

Sweat and sunscreen are inevitable parts of summer--which is why washing your face regularly is even more important now than ever. Facial skin is delicate and sensitive which makes it prone to losing its elasticity prematurely. It is also prone to irritation and allergic reactions.

The daily routine of cleansing our facial skin is important and it requires an important ingredient-an ideal facewash.

An ideal face wash should cleanse the skin thoroughly without irritating or breaking down the sensitive area, or leaving behind harmful fats and chemicals that pollute or are a toxicant to our body. It should be hypo-allergenic and fragrance free.

Pick & choose

When choosing a face wash there are a few important guidelines to remember:

n Avoid chemical-laden products. They can be harsh and irritating to your skin. Remember that what you apply to your skin is ultimately absorbed into our body.

n Many brands of face wash contain animal fats and collagen. These sources should be enough to tell you that they should be avoided. We want to purify our skin, not pollute it.

n Avoid products that contain acids. While it is true that acid kills harmful bacteria, acid pH also causes premature aging.

n Avoid a face wash that contains perfume. This can be very irritating to your skin and may cause or worsen allergies.

n Using a face wash that emits negative ions can be very refreshing to tired, pollution-weary skin.

For people with oily skin who are also acne prone, it is advisable that the face wash you choose be one that is oil-free. The oils in facial cleansers can clog pores and trap bacteria, aggravating acne and elevating the frequency of outbreaks. Most facial cleansers mention that they are oil-free on the front of the packaging, but not all; you must make sure.

Look out

So, when you flip the bottle around and read the ingredient list, what are you looking for? The question is really what you are not looking for. You must make sure that the product does not contain any of the common ingredients that lead to irritation for those with sensitive skin.

Some of the things that should not be found on the ingredient list for a face wash for sensitive skin include:

Cocoa butter

Castor oil

Vegetable oils


Glycolic acid

Lactic acid

Malic acid

Sodium salicylate

Willow extract

Tropic acid


Any type of sulphate

It is incredibly difficult to find a face wash for sensitive skin that doesn't contain any sort of fragrance at all, but you can find some that don't have enough to irritate your skin.

As a rule of thumb, look for:

A neutral PH

Alcohol and fragrance free

Go simple. Nature knows best. Read your labels and be satisfied that you are promoting the health and longevity of your facial skin rather than that of the chemically- inclined skin care industry.

(Dr Sharma is a dermatologist & dermato-laser surgeon)

Cool factor

It is that one bit of addition to the wardrobe which makes a person more stylish than the other. In today’s world of fast-moving fashion scene it is only the smart ones who knows what style is, stand out in a crowd. Being stylish has become more interesting and exciting now, with everybody wanting to look their best. Tall and willowy, Dr Gursheen Kaur sure wants to be a trendy medico—

Your sense of style…

I feel those who dress appropriately according to the weather conditions are the real stylish people. Cool colours in summer, bright in rainy season and dark in winter is what I really like and appreciate. Also I am very impressed by people who can accessorise smartly.

Latest addition to your treasure of clothing or accessories…

My elegant watch from Tissot.

Brand crazy or street pick-ups?

Anything that looks good and is trendy will do. No holds barred!

Your style icon would be…

Sonam Kapoor and Kim Kardashan!

Who do you think is the worst-dressed celebrity?

Mahie Gill for sure!

Which look would your prefer – sporty, chic or glamorous?

Depends on the occasion, Glamorous or casual.

One fashion trend that goes beyond your comprehension…

Wearing sporty shoes with formal wear.

Your take on accessories…

They are a must and it is only accessories like scarves, stoles and some trinkets which make one look wow!

Given the choice, which Designer you would like to be dressed by?

Ritu Beri! Anytime

What gives you a high on the confidence level?

If I am comfortable in what I am wearing I feel confident to take on anything!

(As told to Poonam Bindra)

Master Chef
Tangy tango
Kandla Nijhowne

It delights me no end when I can pull out with great flourish a jar of glistening mango chutney, well after we've waved sayonara to fresh mangoes! I love the translucent sheen of the garlic, cooked fruit, speckled with kalonji, red chilli and crushed elaaichi bits.

Mango chutney is an extremely versatile preserve to have at hand, any time of the year. It enhances a simple daal-chaawal meal by lending it extra spunk and it's even superb with paranthas. Have you ever tried thinning out a spoonful to add to a salad dressing? It takes the salad to a different level altogether!

Another of my favourite creations is a simple sandwich, lined with lettuce and cheese, with a smearing of chutney! Readers, its zingy all the way, so don your aprons and get stirring!


Use a heavy bottomed kadhaai. Cook the mango, garlic, ginger and water on a low fire. Stir and cook till the ingredients are tender and the garlic doesn't smell raw anymore.

Add sugar, vinegar, chilli powder, kalonji, elaichi, salt, and raisins.

Make sure you've added sugar only when the shredded mango is fully cooked. It will not tenderize any further once the sugar is introduced!

Cook, stirring frequently till the chutney is thick and golden in colour. Remove from the fire and sprinkle garam masaala.

Check for seasoning, cool and put in an airtight jar.

Refrigerate if not consumed within the dry weather. Serve with your favourite snacks.

(Nijhowne is a Chandigarh-based culinary expert)

Mango chutney

1 kg raw mangoes, peeled and grated

2 cups vinegar

1 cup water

1 ½ -2 tsp red chilli powder

¾ tbsp kalonji

3 ½ -4 sups sugar

4 tbsp salt

3 tbsp minced ginger

5-6 cloves garlic, chopped

1 ½ tbsp “moti” elaichi seeds, crushed

8 tbsp raisins

1 tbsp garam masaala

Pizza pleasure!
From simple bread to the modern-day variety with wonderful toppings, the good old pizza has come a long way 
Jigyasa Kapoor Chimra

From pre-made bread to hand-tossed and now thin crust, it’s almost 3,000 years of food evolution that has taken the pizza pie to reach its current delicious state! Although no one can say who first invented this fabulous bread, it was an Italian tavern owner named Don Raffaele Esposito who first developed pizza featuring tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil. He named it the Margherita Pizza, after the Queen of Italy, Margherita Teresa Giovanni. Thus, we have the modern-day tomato and cheese pizza!

That was history; today we have pizzas tossed to suit the taste-buds of people from across the globe. “Every pizza is made with the same foundation of bread dough and generally a tomato, garlic or white sauce. But the toppings differ from place to place as pizza has become comfort food in many countries. Europeans add sliced boiled eggs, raw fish and even aubergine as toppings. Japanese pizza is with moshi cake and Brazilians add tropical fruits and veggies as toppings. As for us, we have invented the tandoori chicken, spicy chicken, spinach and paneer pizza,” says Nikhil Mittal, from Nik Bakers.

Having evolved over centuries, the word pizza is believed to have originated from an old Italian word meaning ‘a point’, which in turn became the Italian word ‘pizziare’ that means to pinch or to pluck. And informing us more about this peasant food turned glam fare, chef Antonello Cancedda from the Italian restaurant Oregano at JW Marriott says, “Pizza is no more an Italian food alone, it has become a global fare that is loved by all. From hard bread of the peasants it has turned thin crust, which is the most-liked form of pizza these days. Though one can add as many variations to the pizza and make it country and city-specific, but what we serve is the authentic Italian Pizza, where even our tomatoes come from Italy.” And when talking of tomatoes, they were first not added to the pizza. It was only around the 17th century that Italians began adding tomato to the bread dough and hence pizza was created.”

It was not till the 18th century that cheese and tomatoes had met for the deadly combination of pizza. “It was around 1889 that cheese pizza came into being and for our region, we didn’t have pizzas readily available till late 1980s,” says Priya Garg, director, Ovenfresh. She adds, “Though pizzas are quite loved these days, they have evolved more in the last two decades - from thick bread to thin crust and from pre-made to hand-tossed. We have a refined taste in pizza these days, people no more like the regular toppings but want exotic veggies, meats and even sea food on their pizza slice.”

From the past

Pizza migrated to America with the Italians in the later half of the 19th century.

Gennaro Lombardi opened the first true US Pizzeria in 1905 at 53 1/3 Spring Street in New York City, part of a town known as “Little Italy.”

The first Pizza Hut, a chain of pizza restaurants, appeared in the United States during the 1930s.

Frozen pizza was invented by Rose Totino.

High Spirits
Green apple and mint martini
Vineet Mishra

A Green apple cocktail with hint of fresh mint.


Grey goose Le Citron: 45 ml

Lime juice: 10 ml

Fresh apple chunks: 4

Castor sugar: 1 spoon

Monin green apple: 10 ml

Apple juice: 5 ml

Mint leaves: 4

Crushed ice and cube ice

Garnish: a slice of green apple

Instructions: Muddle the apple with the lime and sugar.

Add in rest of the ingredients. Slap some mint and drop it into the shaker.

Shake well with ice and double strain into a chilled martini glass.

Cocktail joke: Telephone is a good way to talk without having to offer them a drink.

(Mishra is director of

Star track
Amour' wins Palme d'Or top prize 

Amour (Love) by Michael Haneke was awarded the 2012 Palme d'Or top prize at the closing ceremony of the 65th Cannes film festival on Sunday night, a publication reported.

Starring Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuel Riva, two French legendary stars both in their 80s, the two-hour film tells a story of an old man looking after his frail wife hit by a stroke.

"Thanks to my wonderful actors. They are the essence of it," said Haneke in his short acceptance speech.

He thanked the jury for giving him the opportunity to "be part of the prestigious competition" and his wife for supporting him for 30 years. —IANS

Reality, a winner at Cannes

Italian satire Reality directed by Matteo Garrone was awarded the second-place grand prize at the closing ceremony of the 65th Cannes film festival, a publication reported. Starring Aniello Arena, the film tells the story of a Naples fishmonger obsessed with reality TV.

The top prize Palme d'Or went to Michael Haneke's Amour (Love) while the third-place jury prize was given to Ken Loach's The Angels' Share as the 12-day movie showcase ended on Sunday night. —IANS

Bollywood going through transition: Chandrachur Singh

Actor Chandrachur Singh, who has been out of action for health reasons, is back. From films to television he is doing everything and is also wowed by the film industry's professionalism and changing work culture.

"Bollywood is going through a transitional phase. One of the good things that has happened over the years is that there is continuity. Now most of the films are shot in just one schedule, which was not there before," said Chandrachur.

"The mechanics of film-making have changed. post-production values have changed in a big way. There is a lot of professionalism today; films are getting fresh treatment...It is good to see they have learned the business dynamics of it," added the 43-year-old actor.

He breezed into Bollywood in 1996 with two successful films - Maachis and Tere Mere Sapne. He proved his versatility by playing a militant in off-beat serious drama Maachis, about militancy in Punjab, and an NRI who falls in love with a desi girl in romantic comedy Tere Mere Sapne.

Later in Josh and Kya Kehna he was seen romancing Aishwarya Rai and Preeti Zinta respectively.

After 2001 release Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiyaa the actor suffered health problems and has been out of action.

The actor claims he used his time constructively.

"I was busy spending quality time with my five-year-old son, watching world cinema, reading books and listening to classical, rock music (my son likes to listen it a lot)," said Chandrachur, who worked as a music teacher in Vasant Valley School in Delhi before becoming an actor.

"It was a kind of rejuvenation, where I also got a chance to expand my horizons and introspect myself," he added.

He was seen in this year's release Chaar Din Ki Chandni and will also feature in Zila Ghaziabad and Mira Nair's The Reluctant Fundamentalist.

He has been also shooting for tentatively titled film Pal Chhin.

What about taking up direction? "Not as of now. I have no plans to step behind the camera. But I don't know what the future holds. Right now I am content with the wide variety of roles that I am getting as an actor," he said.

Chandrachur is also venturing into small screen as the host of Food Food channel's cookery show Royal Rasoi, which will explore recipes patronised by the erstwhile royalty.

The show will also talk about royal household, where the recipes come from, along with the history and anecdotes attached to it.

"It was more of an intuitive decision. My brother Aditya was producing the show. I had some free time as most of the films that I have worked are in post-production. It is a very interesting concept as the show will not only talk about food but also about contribution to the place, erstwhile history and cultural diversity of that place," he said. —IANS

Mila Kunis loves her teddy bear

Friends With Benefits star Mila Kunis, who is all set for her next release Ted, says her teddy bear is the love of her life.

The 28-year-old actress, who was recently rumored to be dating Ashton Kutcher, stars opposite a foul-mouthed toy bear in the comedy, reported a website.

"I still have my teddy. I've had it since I was nine. Maybe one day I'll share this bear with the world but for now he's just for me. I take him everywhere," she said.

The Ukranian-born actress moved to Los Angeles with her family when she was seven-year-old and enrolled in a drama class.

"I didn't have very many friends. And there was this place advertised on the radio as a place for kids to meet other kids, an acting class. My parents couldn't afford a babysitter." — PTI 

Meeting real Katy

Pop star Katy Perry says she has revealed more about herself than she ever did before in her 3D concert film Part Of Me.

The 27-year-old releases her film in July and has promised the project which combines concert footage with her everyday life, including intimate details of her split from husband Russell Brand will show who she really is.

"A lot of people have a lot of ideas about me, but this is a film that I made for myself, for my fans so that they can get the all-access pass. And I've never been this revealing," Perry said.

The singer thinks the movie will make people realise that her life isn't perfect and she has had to work hard to achieve success. "I feel like it's important for me to start breaking down the stereotype that everyone that's in this position is perfect. — PTI

Will terrified of daughter’s dating

Men In Black star Will Smith says he is worried about his 11-year-old daughter Willow growing up and starting to date.

The 43-year-old actor said he is already tensed about the trouble she might bring home when she begins going out with boys. "It's coming, and I'm nervous about it. Having two boys and a girl, I realise that boys take trouble to other people's houses, and girls bring it home. "So, we are setting fair rules for the boys and for Willow, but she's not having any of that." he said. —PTI

The world is not safe...

Hollywood superstar Brad Pitt says he has tried to reflect in his new gangster movie Killing Them Softly how violent the world is.

The 48-year-old actor, who raises six kids with fiancé Angelina Jolie, believes the film represents wider changes in the world since the economic crash of 2008, reported a website.

"We live in a violent world. I certainly grew up hunting, which is a very violent act. Have you had a hamburger? The way they butcher a cow. It's barbaric. It's horrendous. This is the world we live in. I see it as absolutely important to film," Pitt said.

The actor, who plays assistant to a hitman in the Andrew Dominik-directed picture, also said he wanted to join the project because it was commenting on 
our time.

"We are always looking for stories that say something about our time and who we are. I certainly felt on reading the script that this was making a commentary. At the time, people were at the apex of the mortgage loan debacle, people were leaving their homes.

"I felt I was reading a gangster film and then it coalesced that this microcosm was saying something about the macro-world," he added. — PTI

Son made me more creative: Theron

Actress Charlize Theron says she was on the verge of opting out of Snow White and the Huntsman but decided otherwise because her newly adopted son made her more creative.

The 36-year-old adopted six month old Jackson in March and says her son has given a new direction to her life.

"When I first heard my son was coming into my life, I didn't want to make the film. But having him has changed me and made me a lot more creative as a person," Theron said.

The Monster star has been single since her nine-year-old relationship with Irish actor Stuart Townsend ended in 2010.

"You know, I don't think any mother aims to be a single mom. I didn't wish for that, but it happened. I always knew, I would adopt. Always," she said. — PTI 

chatter box
The action begins

As a lead in Pyaar Kii Yeh Ek Kahaani and now Madhubala - Ek Ishq Ek Junoon, Vivian D’Sena has been working hard. While he is soaring high in his career, we caught up with him to talk about the show and more.

So what attracted you to this role?

I have always done roles that are different. I played a vampire in Pyaar Ki Ek Kahani. Now, I’m playing a superstar in this show.

How will describe your character RK?

RK is someone very famous. He is a star kid who is successful, confident and clear about what he wants in life.

Any inspiration from any Bollywood actor?

I idolise Salman Khan, but that doesn’t mean I follow him completely.

Both, Drashti and you are equally famous on television. Do you think it will help the show?

I think it’s good for the show. We both have a good fan-following so hopefully more people shall watch our show.

Is the show based on the 90s?

No. It isn’t a periodic show. It’s set in the current times.

Have you been working out for your role?

Yes, I have. I had become 98 kgs and so far I have lost 11 kgs. I am back in shape and all old clothes don’t fit me anymore.

Retired hurt

“Too much fun is not good for health,” warns Roopal Tyagi aka the very vivacious Gunjan of Zee TV’s primetime show, Sapne Suhane Ladakpan Ke. The girl who is synonymous with fun and mischief on the sets injured her tailbone recently while doing a promo shoot for the show in Varanasi. 

Says Rajesh Babbar, the director of the show, “Roopal is exactly like her character Gunjan in real life. She is always so full of life and does masti on the sets all the time. But unfortunately this time, the fun has really cost her health.”

For the promo shoot in Varanasi, Roopal had to ride a cycle rickshaw through the narrow lanes and climb down a fleet of stairs. She had the option of using a duplicate but she insisted on doing the stunt all by herself and while doing it she injured herself.

Down with excruciating pain, poor Gunjan was bedridden for few weeks. “Yes, I injured my tailbone very badly and my back has gone for a toss. It’s been ten days since the accident and I still can’t stand straight. I had to change my entire diet plan because the antibiotics made me put on a lot of weight. But I will be back on the show very soon,” says Gunjan. 

Who’s that girl?

Star Plus’ Jo Jeeta Wohi Superstar season 2 contestant, Aneek Dhar has left everyone present on the show surprised. With his melodious voice, he has managed to charm Alka Yagnik who was the special guest on the show when he sang the song, Tumhe jo maine dekha from the hit movie Main Hoon Na.  After his performance, the judges were curious to know who was in Aneek’s mind while he sang the song. Aneek said, “There is someone special but I will only reveal more during the grand finale.” We are dying to know it all.

kEEP GUESSING: Aneek Dhar 

A real life twist

Kanika Maheshwari who is playing the character of Meenakshi in Diya Aur Baati Hum is literally on her toes these days. This newly wed actor in real life has settled in Delhi after her marriage and every month she has to travel up and down from Delhi to Mumbai for her shoot. 

“I love my work. At times, it’s very difficult to balance your work and new family, but in-laws respect and appreciate my work. They are very co-operative and helpful. On the other hand, my producer is also very cooperative. My scenes are planned much in advance. Only after the script is ready, I am called for the shoot. This is very difficult in the TV industry, but my producer manages it so well.”, says Kanika.

And what about the typical Indian telly image of a mother-in-law? Laughs Kanika, “My off-screen mother-in-law is completely opposite to my on-screen, mother-in-law Bhabo. She is a very sweet, caring mom-in-law and she understands me so well. In fact, Bhabo is also very close to me once the camera is off”, adds Kanika.

If looks could change!

Reality TV star Kim Kardashian says she wants to be skinny for a day and have the body of a supermodel. The Keeping Up With The Kardashians star has learnt to accept her curvaceous figure, but she still wishes she was thinner. “If I could have anyone’s body, I’d love to be a supermodel.

I’d love to be skinny for the day. It’s a process. You have to learn to accept it. I’m built a certain way and you just can’t change that,” she said. The 31-year-old socialite says she is not always confident about showing off her body. “In Hollywood, people are used to stick-skinny women, and that’s never going to be me. Growing up, I’d look at those skinny models and feel like I looked different. I’m not always confident. I have hang-ups like everyone else - I’ve never been a big fan of my thighs,” Kim added. —PTI

On a happy note…

TV actor Todd Bridges, of Diff’rent Strokes fame, and his wife Dori have decided to part ways after being married for 14 years. Todd, 47, announced the news via Twitter that he and Dori are parting ways and that he wanted to be the first little birdie to get the word out. “I’m going to beat the media to this. Me and my wife are divorcing and our lives and are going in different directions. We remain good friends,” he posted. It is not clear if they have filed the papers for divorce yet. —PTI 

The year ahead
Madan Gupta Spatu

If your birthday is May 29...

Try to control your emotions, especially anger. You should look twice at investment schemes that are presented to you. Health of your spouse may cause stress and anxiety. Partnership projects will create more problems than positive results. You will be angry at yourself for allowing someone to take advantage of you. If you run from a situation, it will follow you in the worst possible way.

You may have to visit a hospital. Be careful who you deal with financially. Some changes at home could lead to problems with loved ones. Control your tongue or it may put you in some problem.

Lack of satisfaction in career will provoke you to take measures to improve your prospects. You will get guidance to take better decisions in financial matters. Relationship matters will make you think and you will learn something new. You may suffer from common cold and that could be a reason for your stress. This is a favourable moment for you if you wish to start or improve a relationship. Indeed, now there is great harmony in the cosmos.

You might tie the nuptial knot soon. The arrival of the year will bring a phase which work well for those who work in the legal field. Physical well-being needs your attention this time. Being innovative and loyal is not enough to win the laurels. Do not feel gloomy. Until and unless you are happy, you should not take pains to solve problems of your dear ones. Bonding has special significance in your life. Number 2 and the Moon will make you energetic, creative, naïve, loyal and dashing in nature.

Your friends can be supportive, serviceable and social. Some of you may have a slight health problem that will require you to take rest for few days during this week. You might have to take care of the health of your mother. Mood: Distracted and sometimes ‘challenged’ by others. Compatible signs: Capricorn, Leo. Lucky colours: Rose pink, blue. Lucky days: Sunday and Monday. Lucky numbers: 5, 14, 19, 45, 90. Lucky gem: Pearl, Red coral, Yellow sapphire. Lucky flower: Red rose.

Melanie Janine Brown (May 29, 1975, Rochester, Minnesota, USA) better known as Mel B, is an English pop singer-songwriter, actress, author and television presenter. She is best known as Scary Spice, one of the members of the girl group the Spice Girls. Her reality show aired on the Style Channel is called Mel B: It’s a Scary World. She now wants to promote her music career with a reality show based on her life. In November 2010, Get Fit with Mel B, a fitness programme, was released in North America and Europe.

Astro turf
P Khurrana

ARIES: You can work on your dreams using your wisdom. You will be in a mood to meet people from different walks of life. Visitors from abroad may be relying on you. Avoid drinks in the evening party. Tarot message: You shall prevent a lot of trouble by taking timely action. Lucky colour: Fuschia

Magic number: 46

TAURUS: Indulging in idle talk and gossiping with the neighbours will not make you happy. Check out the newspapers to find activities that appeal to you. Students should give themselves plenty of time to study. Tarot message: Do not be in the rush to spend extravagantly. 

Lucky colour: Crimson.

Magic number: 58

GEMINI: Someone may back-stab you. You will be surprised at the excellent reception you get. You are likely to have a lot a fun at work and enjoy a few pranks with co-workers. Tarot message: Don’t reveal your plans to your competitors.

Lucky colour: Metallic grey.

Magic number: 31

CANCER: Do not become easily ruffled. Your personal and public life is likely to clash in the evening. A desire to beautify your space will make you shop a lot today.

Tarot message: Feel good about yourself and prepare yourself for a mental battle.

Lucky colour: Bottle green

Magic number: 63

LEO: You have achieved most of your short term objectives today. A good business day. Associates will be helpful. You will find the atmosphere at work congenial to make progress. Tarot message: You may encounter some difficulties regarding finances.

Lucky Colour: Yellow

Magic number: 27

VIRGO: Your resources can get a boost. Whatever you set your mind on, you can achieve now. Get up and get going. Health problem is not a worry. Turn to a member of your family if you need advice. Tarot message: Take one step at a time and avoid being over-anxious.

Lucky colour: Ebony.

Magic number: 36.

LIBRA: Your card shines on love, money and sports.  Stick to your schedule. Your conscience is likely to be pricked. Don’t be close-minded about anything. Instead, open your mind to new opportunities. Tarot message: Remember never to fall for rash promises. Lucky colour: Orange.

Magic number: 44

SCORPIO: There is a promise of better things in the offing. It is simply up to you to make use of opportunities. Watch your step while dealing with superiors.

Tarot message: Do as much hardwork as you can to get ahead of others. 

Lucky colour: Sea green.

Magic number: 51.

SAGITTARIUS: Your emotions can over-ride your good judgement in some situations. Problems for factory workers are indicated. You could be misreading the actions of loved ones. Do not take risk for quick gains.  Tarot message: Deal with one thing at a time instead of too many. Lucky colour: Deep red.

Magic number: 65

CAPRICORN: Not a favourable day for setting out on a long journey. There will be delays. Old patients should take complete rest. Lovers have a romantic evening ahead. Tarot message: Be articulate to prevent people from making their own conclusions.

Lucky colour: Purple.

Magic number: 52

AQUARIUS: A new love affair is likely to change your life. Women should focus on balanced diet. Pet animals need attention. Teenage girls will be at their charming best. A Libra friend will be supportive.

Tarot message: Dare to accomplish those tasks which normally take up a lot of time. Lucky colour: Peach.

Magic number: 32

PISCES: This is not the right day to complete property deals. Get your priorities right. An offer to move up the corporate ladder may be within your grasp. You may have to make a long journey which will be successful. Tarot message: Avoid situations that may turn nasty. Lucky colour: Saffron.

Magic number: 28.

HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | E-mail |