A perspective in pain
Arun Shourie, a man of many seasons, has overcome a plethora of challenges in life and all that reflects in his work Does He Know A Mother's Heart?...
Jasmine Singh

Arun Shourie In one corner of a decorated hall, he sits quietly; listening attentively to someone talking. A calm face that reveals nothing, countable creases running hurriedly through his fair skin. He looks at us, smiles softly. Arun Shourie, the man who held his pen high under all circumstances, the man who dabbled in the figures of commerce and industry...smiles softy.

No glaring scars of suffering trickling either from his eyes or his words; the man has been with pain for so long that it doesn't hurt anymore. Or does it? He doesn't take a million years to answer. "Yes it does," he says, almost whispering. "Buddha says he is not a surgeon; he cannot cure a problem, he can only suggest ways to dismantle the thoughts in mind, which create that problem," shares Arun Shourie, who was in Chandigarh on the invitation of the Chandigarh Sahitya Akademi.

Lessons like these and more find a place in the chapters of his book — Does He Know A Mother's Heart? "It is a futile search for explanation. Suffering takes new forms, in newer ways. If it is not avoided, it can be dealt with. Help someone who cannot do anything for you. Love a little longer, only then does it stop hurting," says Arun Shourie, the man who formed a love net around his cerebral palsy-afflicted son Aditya.

All this and more flows in his book Does He Know A Mother's Heart? The book is based on the deep bond of love in the Shourie family and the answers he seeks while attending Aditya and wife Anita, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer's after an accident in her 40s.

Before you thought of it as a therapeutic exercise, Arun Shourie lightens it up. He smiles again, a smile that cannot be differentiated into a happy, sad or sarcastic one. "No, it wasn't anything like that. In fact, I wrote the first chapter in flat two days; it was the chapters in the end that I had to struggle with. It was those chapters that don't stand scrutiny." He holds on to that smile.

Like he held on to his spirit of life…"Time and chance are the two demons and you can't hold on to anything," he adds. Arun Shourie fell back on the teachings of Abraham and the Buddha when waves of desolation swept through him. He didn't leave; he did curse, but he found his answers soon. "Meditation or puja are devices to reduce the pressure on the mind. We shouldn't be dependent on these devices, instead we need to find a perspective," Arun Shourie comes to the closure of the conversation.

A little movement in his Adams Apple… "Every lesson is washed out in twenty minutes," he clings to his soft smile.


On an equal stage
To make this world a fair place for both the genders we all need to be committed to change, believes the remarkable team of the play Jug Jug Jio... 

Women face discrimination in all segments of society right from the poor to the rich; while some choose to hide, others confront — this is how Smita Bharti, social activist, writer and director sums up her experience. She finds a powerful medium of expression as well as change in theatre and for the 5th Chandigarh Arts & Heritage Festival; she offers her play Jug Jug Jio. She admits that her vast range of experience of working pan-Asia with women and adolescents shapes her scripts.

In Swaroopa Ghosh, Dolly Ahluwalia Tewari, Rachit Behl and Jyotsna, she finds an incredible team that put up a night's story on to the stage. Dealing with women and the issues they face, this intense play balances it out with humour. "I did heavy stuff earlier, but with time I have learnt to balance it out," says Smita. Domestic violence, rape, infanticide are still a part of our 'modern' society; so do we see a way out? "The change can happen in one generation; the challenge is to alter the mindsets. Once wrong is done, we have laws but what about preventive law? A small country like Bhutan invests in their youth and maximising their Gross Domestic Happiness; we are still struggling to generate a gender-neutral curriculum. Unless we focus on how we bring up our children, the situation would remain the same," says Smita, writer and director of the play.

"A lot has changed, while some sections endorse it others condone. Sadly, the laws used to protect women are being misused. The movement is slow yet sure," says Dolly Ahluwalia Tewari, who plays Simran in Jug Jug Jio. On her first meeting with Smita, Dolly was so taken by the story that she committed to act in it despite a very demanding schedule. "I have tried to put in experience and pain of all the women I have seen around me in this act," she says.

Swaroopa Ghosh, who plays Samyukta in the play, is bothered by the fact that despite so many platforms being available for help, there is little awareness on where to go when faced with unfair situations. "No change can happen overnight, any step taken forward matters."

Jyotsana and Rachit Behl represent the younger generation while playing Sia and Siraj. Rachit, the lone male member in the team, has learnt more patience during the rehearsals and likes to adopt his director's 'balanced approach'. "India is huge. There are issues that women face but I am pretty hopeful that sooner than later, we will sort out the difference and achieve the much-needed balance."

On the other hand, Jyotsna is not the one for gender equality, "Men and women are different, with different needs all together. The need is not to be equal, but considerate towards each other," says Jyotsna, who finds every reason to be positive.


Language love

Playing with languages is what Smita Bharti loves to do. Her play Jug Jug Jio is in ‘Hinglish’. Earlier she would write her poetry in Hindi and plays in English; with time different languages have converged in her works. "There are so many languages in our country and I am proud of it. Tell me another country with so many sounds. And yet we understand each other," says Smita. "It's the social, emotional call; I feel in Hindi but use English in everyday life. I love exploring the power dynamics in languages."

Doc Talk
Ray of hope
Dr Vikas Sharma

Laser skin resurfacing rejuvenates the skin cell layers with precision. The new skin cells that form during the healing process give the skin a tighter, younger looking surface.

Laser skin resurfacing is an outpatient procedure. The laser technique directs short, concentrated pulsating beams of light at irregular skin. The three types of lasers most commonly used in laser skin resurfacing are IPL (Intense Pulsed Light), Fractional laser and Erbium.

You may be a good candidate for laser skin resurfacing if you have one or more of the following conditions:

  • Wrinkled or sun-damaged facial skin.
  • Vertical wrinkles around mouth.
  • Lines around the eyes and perhaps some skin laxity in lower eyelid area.
  • Brown spots or blotchy skin colouring.
  • Certain precancerous skin growths.
  • Acne or chicken pox scars.
  • Superficial facial scars from a past injury.

Patients can have their skin resurfaced at almost any age. It can be used on the entire face or specific areas. Certain other characteristics such as skin thickness and texture may influence whether one is a right candidate for laser resurfacing.

Anyone considering this treatment should be aware of both the benefits and risks of the procedure.

Guidelines for laser skin resurfacing

  • This really depends why one is considering laser resurfacing. One needs to make sure that the expectations are realistic and that resurfacing is appropriate for skin care concern.
  • The use of resurfacing lasers for acne scars is one of the best options. If you have a lot of 'colour' or pigment irregularity, the risks are increased. This is why a consultation with a certified dermatologist is critical for a thorough evaluation.

Take care

  • If you have active acne or if you have keloidal tendency or on drugs like isotretinoin, steroids, immunosuppressives like cyclosporine etc you are not a candidate for this procedure.
  • Pregnant or breastfeeding mothers should delay the treatment because the safety of the fractional laser resurfacing on them is still not well-established.
  • People with a history of skin sensitivity to light, or those who have an active infection near the site to be treated are not allowed to undergo the fractional laser resurfacing.

Flip side

  • Milia, which are small white bumps, may appear in the laser-treated areas during healing.
  • Reactivation of a herpes simplex cold sore may occur, especially after laser skin resurfacing around the mouth.
  • You should expect some swelling after laser skin resurfacing.
  • Patients are encouraged to sleep on an extra pillow at night to help reduce the swelling after laser resurfacing. Ice pack application is also helpful in the first 24 to 48 hours.
  • Cessation of smoking is highly recommended because smoking is known to have harmful effects on the healing process.

Following Laser resurfacing treatments, it is important that one avoids direct or indirect exposure to the sun until all the redness or pinkness of the skin has subsided. It is also important to keep the new skin well moisturised.

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

Master Chef
Funtastic deal
Manju Dewan

Pancakes have been a perennial favourite and can be had with many combinations . Since child hood we have always relished the ubiquitous pancake and it's flat surface has given the phrase "her stomach is as flat as a pancake " the true descriptive meaning . Here we have vegetables to enhance the nutritive value thus making it a dish to tempt the kids into eating veggies.


2 cups maida

¼ tsp baking powder

2 cups milk

1 tsp coriander leaves (chopped)

1 tbsp oil

2 carrots (grated)

1 cup cottage cheese (grated)

1 cup green peas (boiled)

Salt to taste

Black pepper powder, to taste

Three Layered Pancake


Sieve maida. Add pinch of salt and baking powder. Add milk and mix well to get a smooth paste. Pour ¼ of the mixture on a non stick pan. Apply a little oil and cook on both sides. Repeat and make three more pancakes. Add salt and pepper to cottage cheese, green peas and carrots and sauté each of them separately for 2 minutes. On a pancake spread cottage cheese mixture. Cover it with another pancake. Spread green pea's mixture and cover with a pancake. Spread carrot mixture and cover with a pancake. Now roll the pancake and cut into round slices. Serve hot with tomato ketchup.

(Dewan is a Ludhiana based culinary chef)

—As told to Poonam Bindra

Life of Sri

Sridevi Sridevi looks more gorgeous and stunning than ever! She is almost 50 and talks about her fabulous life which revolves around her family, movies, fashion and more.

Staying fit

I don't follow any special diet or fitness regime to stay in shape. I eat healthy and lead an active life. I would say that I am a disciplined person and that has helped me considerably.

Fashion forward

My daughters are in their teens and like to keep in touch with the latest trends. They often give me tips on what to wear and what to buy for which occasion. I would say we are a democratic family when it comes to shopping. At times, they buy what I tell them to buy and vice versa. As far as my style goes, I like items that are classic and look elegant in all seasons.

Success mantra

I was very touched when the audience gave me such a positive response for English Vinglish. It was simply overwhelming. As far as success is concerned, I have taken life as it comes. I feel my strength is in my positive attitude towards life. I believe in my work and that's about it. I don't like to take unnecessary stress as it affects your health and mindset. A tension-free mind is the key to looking and feeling great.

Retail therapy

Like every woman, I too love shopping and I find it relaxing and therapeutic. My favourite shopping companions are my daughters. Whenever we go shopping we take a lot of time whether it is in a departmental store or in a supermarket. I enjoy shopping for clothes, jewellery, accessories and household items as well. At a supermarket, I love checking out the variety of sauces and cheeses. Tabasco sauce is one of my favourite items (laughs). I do pamper my daughters and buy them what they like.

Future plans

I have been reading a lot of scripts lately. At this juncture, I want to do work that excites me. Moreover, I need to have complete faith in my director and the team I am working with. The setup has always been important for me. Hopefully, I will sign on a film sometime soon.

Nothing great

Imran Khan and (R) Akshay Kumar Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai Dobaara has got just about average reviews and Imran Khan's casting has been universally panned. The movie offers nothing new and Akshay Kumar is the only reason to watch it.

Average score: Imran Khan and (R) Akshay Kumar

Sallu gets delayed

Salman Khan Salman Khan had recently got his visa to travel to UK to shoot for Sajid Nadiadwala's Kick but things aren't going smoothly for the movie.

While the rest of the cast and crew already started shooting a few portions of the film in Glasgow, Salman was to arrive late since his visa got rejected. Salman re-applied for the visa but the actor has once again encountered another issue. According to his father Salim Khan, Salman has got an approved tourist visa but hasn't received any work permit to shoot.

So, now the team of Kick has plans to wrap up the shoot abroad and is planning to start the second schedule of shooting in India since they have been in Glasgow for more than three weeks, yet waiting for the arrival of the actor.

Besides Salman Khan, Kick also stars Jacqueline Fernandez and Randeep Hooda. Kick is slated to release on Eid in 2014.

Ranbir turns a singer

In his next film, Besharam, Ranbir Kapoor sings a special song. The actor who has managed to steal a million hearts with his acting and dancing skills has another space to gather fans. The first song of the film that will be launched soon, has an added credit in the name of the superstar, Ranbir Kapoor.

The song titled Love ki Ghanti is composed by Lalit-Pandit and sung by Sujeet Shetty, Amitosh Nagpal and the actor of the film Ranbir Kapoor. The song is in the form of a musical conversation and when this concept was decided, the director of the film, Abhinav Kashyap was very keen to have Ranbir to sing the song as it was a conversation his character was having with someone in the song. No other voice would match with the actor's voice for this song.

Ranbir was excited to do this as it was the first time he was recording a song like this. Besharam is one of the most massy and most awaited films of Ranbir Kapoor. Love ki Ghanti is Ranbir's introduction song in the film.

In this song audience will be introduced to the wit and attitude of his character. Abhinav says, "When this concept was formulated, there were no second thoughts about Ranbir singing this song as it is almost in verse form and any other sound wouldn't have worked. It was the most appropriate thing to do and we had a lot of fun while doing this."

No entry for SRK

Shah Rukh Khan Shah Rukh Khan's Chennai Express has become a humongous blockbuster. He is still promoting it. He was not allowed an entry into two malls in Mumbai on August 15 as they had security concerns because the crowds were huge and they did not have the manpower to control them.

ON A HIGH: Shah Rukh Khan

Identity crisis

Prakash Jha was in for a surprise when he was recently informed of a press conference for his upcoming film Satyagraha in Kolkata. An imposter posing to be his son (incidentally, the director has only one daughter) had managed to even rope in sponsors for an event to take place at a five-star hotel in the Capital.

While a police complaint has been filed by the aggrieved parties, Jha too has taken legal recourse in Patna to report the matter. The invite that was sent out by the imposter claimed to have the film's cast Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn, Manoj Bajpayee and Kareena Kapoor apart from Jha attending the event.

The note also informed the invited folk the director's intent to launch his TV channel. An official from the production house states, "It is a strange and bizarre incident. The person has even claimed that Jha is planning to advance the dates of the release owing to his mother's ill health. The director's mother actually passed away two decades ago. He has also been using letterheads in the name of Jha's TV channel to generate funds and advertisement."

The number from which the imposter had been dialing people has been traced to a certain Satish Kumar residing in Kolkata and a formal FIR has been lodged at the Bhawanipur police station. A miffed Jha says, "In fact, the person has also hired a PR agency and has been picking up funds in my name. It is a case of harming my reputation."

Welcome Shruti

Shruti Haasan Shruti Haasan's recent successful films like D-Day and Ramaiyya Vastavaiyya have made her the heroine opposite John Abraham in Welcome Back. Asin was the frontrunner but Shruti has bagged the role.

Shahid’s bald move

Shahid Kapoor might go bald for Vishal Bhardwaj's adaptation of Hamlet as it will be a career-defining role. Sources close to Shahid deny that he will take such a drastic step for the role. The movie will be shot in Kashmir, not entirely though.

Wow Yaami!

Yaami Gautam Yaami Gautam is going places. She has a film with Ajay Devgn directed by Prabhudeva and another one with Ali Zafar. She has also bagged yet another endorsement deal with a hi-end fashion clothing brand.

GOOD GOING: Yaami Gautam

chatter box
A fresh challenge

Karan Goddwani Karan Goddwani got popular due to his role of NK in Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon. Now, as he has bagged the lead role in Mrs Pammi Pyarelal, he talks about his journey and the big role.

Why did you choose Pammi?

This character is dynamic unlike other melodramatic ones in the serial. He won't ask for property papers but for some love. Youngsters will relate to the role, as they will recall stuff they did. There is something for everyone.

Was playing a hero the reason?

Yes that was one of the reasons. My role is mischievous and sweet. He has a romantic track and that of a conman too, as he forces Param to live as Pammi.

Were you always inclined towards comedy?

I am inclined towards challenging roles. Any role that makes you work hard and drives you is more than welcome.

Would you say Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon gave you recognition?

Yes, till today people call me NK. That role gave me global recognition. The show reached far and wide. It felt good that people love you so much. I was the third most loved character on the show.

What do you think of Gaurav Gera who plays the role of Pammi?

I have known him since years. It's amazing to work with him in a show. He is friendly and supportive.

Big show

Ragini Khanna Next week on Colors' Jhalak Dikhlaa Jaa Season 6, the Teen Ka Tadka episode will be aired. Celebrities who will be seen with contestant on the show are Ragini Khanna with Mukti Mohan and Shashank Dogra; Sana Saeed and Tushar Kalia with item girl Mumaith Khan; Sanaya Irani with Drashti and Salman Yusuff Khan; Hazel Keech with Shaan and Sneha Kapoor; Sonali and Sumant with ex-Jhalak contestant Darsheel Safary; and Rithvik Dhanjani will be seen with Lauren and Punit.

Sachin's autograph for Roshni's son

Roshni Chopra seems to be on cloud nine these days, as we hear that the actress has just got the opportunity to interview the legendary Sachin Tendulkar. Back to her favourite field of anchoring, Roshni is said to be interviewing cricketers for a show on a sports channel.

We hear that Roshni had Sachin sign a ball for her son Jaivir, so that she could gift it to him when he grows up. Roshni said, "Yes I am anchoring a sports related show but I can't divulge the details right now." 

Playing pranks

Hina Khan Recently Hina Khan aka Akshara of Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai was in a comic mood while shooting. They were shooting the sawaan milni scenes when she got the director of her show to sit on the swing with her and enjoy for a while. Needless to say, he was embarrassed as there were many cameras around.

Simone's back on TV

After her popularity in television show Heena, actor Simone Singh did many movies. Now the buzz is that she will return to TV with Cinevistaas' Daag. She will play the important role of the mother of the protagonist in the show, which stars Vatsal Seth, Sanjeeda Sheikh and Harsh Chaya. Apparently, the show is inspired from the film Khoon Bhari Maang.

Blockbuster blast

Movies Now channel brings the best of Hollywood blockbusters this August. With four blockbusters —The Last Airbender, Karate Kid, X Men: First Class and the premiere of Michael Jackson's This is it - lined up, the month promises a rocking time for movie buffs.

Catch up with the Karate Kid on August 17 at 11pm, a movie where Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith make a dynamic team as the legendary martial arts icon trains the latter for his biggest test.

The X Men: First Class links the stories behind the great X Men before they joined forces to fight for a greater cause while 'This is it' is a film based on the greatest entertainer of all time — Michael Jackson.

A still from X-men: First Class

Real take

A still from Diya Aur Baati Hum The makers of Diya Aur Baati Hum will launch a nation-wide contest looking for 'real-life' Sooraj and Sandhya. They want real husbands who stood by their wives, as is the story of their show. The show will complete two years at the end of August and this is their way of celebrating the same.

A still from Diya Aur Baati Hum

Astro Turf
P Khurrana

ARIES: Tying up all loose ends will be your priority today; only then will you be a part of parties and social gatherings. Work will take up quite a bit of your time and attention. This will indeed be quite an exciting day. Tarot message: Do not transact in uncertain matters. Lucky colour: Green. Lucky number: 44

TAURUS: This can be a day for changes. Start by mending strained relationships with either a family member or a friend. Reach out and let the person know you still care. Tarot message: You gain by being practical; don't be emotional. Lucky colour: Saffron. Lucky number: 35

GEMINI: The day begins on a favourable note. Now will be the time to make some changes in your daily life, so that you can enjoy the element of newness and freshness. Tarot message: Emphasise on spiritual needs. Lucky colour: Orange. Lucky number: 28

CANCER: The day will be more challenging than usual. As a result, you will have to exercise all your intuitiveness and be as realistic as possible. At work, efficient and organised work will bring good results. Tarot message: Retain the fruits of your hardwork. Lucky colour: Cream. Lucky number: 32

LEO: Expressing what you feel is important and that is exactly what you will be doing today. Showing your love, support and friendship will be your key behaviours. Tarot message: Don't waste an opportunity by not exploiting a contact even if it is from your past. Lucky colour: Sea-green. Lucky number: 49

VIRGO: It is important to concentrate on your core beliefs, values and morals since they will play an important role in your life. Relaxing and spending time with friends and family today will keep your spirits high. Tarot message: Consolidate your gains. Lucky colour: White. Lucky number: 26

LIBRA: Business people will need to get some permission from government agencies and be able to rely on influential friends for the same. If there are people who owe you money, meet them now. Tarot message: Frankness and ability to state the truth are your strong points. Lucky colour: Rainbow pastels. Lucky number: 62

SCORPIO: Decision-making should be quicker if your heart really wants it. Believe in yourself and use both your head as well as heart when dealing with various issues. Tarot message: Avoid frictions with business partners. Lucky colour: Brown. Lucky number: 57

SAGITTARIUS: Some of you will get surprising news. For health reasons, it is important that you don't worry about minor things excessively. In relationships, don't become too controlling Tarot message: Your own aims, ideas and opinions matter a lot. Lucky colour: Grey. Lucky number: 38

CAPRICORN: Finances and health will not be a major concern, but this will be a good time to get routine tests done. Relationships, marriage and friendships will be the highlight of the day. Tarot message: Act righteously and do your duties on time. Lucky colour: Brown. Lucky number: 41

AQUARIUS: This will be a day for love and romance; singles can form special and lasting relationships. Communication will be vital in your personal and professional life, so pay attention to what you say and write. Tarot message: Your determination to succeed will pay dividends. Lucky colour: Yellow. Lucky number: 52

PISCES: The presence of Mercury in your sign will help you handle any disappointment that comes your way either at work or in personal relationships. Your financial security will increase. Tarot message: Use your instinct to get into the top circle of power. Lucky colour: Pink. Lucky number: 63

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