Words are all he has...
The ad guru, poet, lyricist and script writer Prasoon Joshi, who gave us catchy jingles like Thanda Matlab Coca Cola and more recently the winning slogan of BJP, says if the product fails to match the expectations of people, no amount of word jugglery can save it
Nonika Singh

To say that Prasoon Joshi has a way with words would not only be like stating the obvious but also undermining his multifaceted talent as well as his singular ability to touch hearts.

The man who has made us smile, laugh and cry with the power of his words, nay his art of story telling, is not just an ad guru, poet, lyricist and film writer but an extraordinary communicator.

Driven by an inherent need to express and share, everything in life for him is a narrative.

So, he wrote Bhaag Milkha Bhaag not because he saw a biopic but a human story which he wanted to tell his way. In his award winning ad campaign Thanda matlab Coca Cola you saw a mini India come alive. Scores of his advertisements tell unusual yet relatable tales. And as the Chairman and CEO of McCann Worldgroup India, he rejects copywriters who can't sense anything unique in their parents' relationship, "for, if one can't observe, one can't connect."

And while emotions make a narrative he observes that even inanimate objects have stories lurking behind them. Only a few like him are blessed to be able to see beyond the obvious and make others see the same truth. He nods but quips, "However, it all begins with my truth." For instance when he wrote the song Tujhe sab hai pata hai naa maa…it was his relationship with his mother that was the inspiration. That not only millions of Indians but also a guard in England, where his translated poems were being recited, related to the feelings underline the sincerity behind the emotions.

Between what we feel and what we express, he asserts there is always a degree of separation. And all art is quest of delineating that line and pursuit of the absolute.

But he doesn't believe that poetry is more creative than writing jingles or writing films more satisfying than launching brands.

By the way he has no qualms in being referred to as a brand in himself. He muses, "I am fully aware that brands are not made overnight. There is a lot of sweat and toil that goes in creating them and if people call me one I do take it as a compliment."

But those who deem the BJP won on the oars of his political campaign he begs to differ. Instead he says, "A political brand has to be an inherent fit with what the country wants. If the slogan was out of sync with India's mood it would have failed. To give the campaign alone the credit for the BJP's emphatic victory is missing the point that it's a mix of many variables."

Be it a political party or an advertising brand, he is adamant that no slogan howsoever beautiful can work if it doesn't match with the actual product. "If it fails to match the expectations of people, no catchy jingles can save it." Yes, he is steadfast in his belief that a brilliant ad kills a bad product faster. He also stands by his truism that confusion is the fountainhead of clarity and hence creativity. He reasons, "If you start on a focused note, it means you are pre-empting the possibility of exploration and reaching a conclusion too early."

In fact, he would not arrive at any final or definitive statements about his future. Whether one day he will turn a full time poet is met with a sharp repartee, "In India you don't quit anything."

Sure the writer who is flooded with offers to write biopics which he has politely declined is not averse to turning a film director. But as he puts it, "India loves to be in the state of co-existence…" So does he! No wonder this or that is not an option for this creative dynamo. The only bottom-line is to reach out to as many people as possible. Whatever may be the tool, winning over people comes naturally to Joshi for whom life is an open book and for whom each one of us are born unparalleled and unique.

So, if you want to be like him 'be yourself' is the pearl of advice he proffers. Only remember men like Prasoon Joshi are neither easily created nor born every other day.


Foodies let loose
What happens when a foodie plays a foodie character and gets to eat in the process? She goes all out to bite into juicy chicken at Pal Dhaba in the company of her co-star. That's Parineeti Chopra and Aditya Roy Kapoor inviting you to feast on their film, Daawat-e-Ishq
Manpriya Singh

Getting into the skin of the character called for falling in love with food; right from the portrayal onscreen to interviews off screen. Promoting Daawat-e-Ishq has been one food outing for Parineeti, who plays the sales girl and a foodie.

 Aditya Roy Kapoor & Parineeti Chopra	"I play Gulrez, a Hyderabadi girl," she begins while biting into a roti and chicken at Pal Dhaba, in Chandigarh for the promotions of the film. It's been a last stop for the day, with a visit back home in Ambala fitted in between. Parineeti's mother hosted the cast to a home cooked meal comprising some of her favourites, "dal makhni, jeera aloo and biscuit pudding." She shares, "I love eating. I can literally eat anything." She sounds all things bubbly, the very word she's been hell bent in disassociating herself from in the recent past.

Helping her take the food story forward is Aditya Roy Kapoor, the Lucknawi chef, who claims to charm his way through anybody with his kebabs and biryani. As of now, he sounds as much on the other side, while dipping into ras malai (one of his favourites) rather than the one who can dish out recipes. He shares, "I play Tariq, a Lucknawi chef who's quite good at his job. Not just the role but the film itself is a different kind from the stable of YRF."

Blame it on the love for food, zeal for promotions or plain appetite, it takes a while for conversation to flow from food to film.

While the role came tailor-made for Parineeti, Aditya had to work on the character on more than one count. "The role has been challenging for me because I had to work a lot on my look and also the language. We worked intensively on the look that you see in the film. Also, since I play a guy from Lucknow, there is a particular way of speaking that we wanted in the film, for which I attended workshops."

From the adorable long-haired VJ we have known him all along as to one of the actors to watch out for, it's been quite a journey for him. "Personally speaking, I feel my journey has been quite satisfying. I am happy with the films I have done so far and the kind of roles I am getting." However, only a couple of things remain unattained. "It was one of my childhood dreams to be a cricketer. A dream that now I wish to fulfill by someday getting to play a cricketer onscreen."

A biography, perhaps! As of now, the onscreen chef gets set to move over to the next dhaba, another city as a part of the food trip.

And how can the crowd let them be or leave the place without a parting note of praise? "We absolutely love Chandigarh."


Music comes first for Fawad

Pakistani actor-singer Fawad Khan is set to make his Bollywood debut with Khoobsurat opposite Sonam Kapoor. We catch up with him to talk about his role and more...

Tell us about your role.

I play a Rajput prince in the film. He is disciplined and ambitious. It's based on Captain Von Trapp from Sound Of Music. Christopher Plummer was amazing in that role. As for me, I enjoyed playing the character.

How was the experience shooting for the film?

It was exceptional. I had a blast working for this film. I have met so many people and made new friends. I think it's marvellous.

How is Sonam Kapoor?

To start with, she is a great host. She is very positive. She knows how to make you comfortable. I was completely an alien here and I think Sonam understood it. She has been very supportive.

Did you get to travel around in India?

I have been to quite a few places while working on this film. We shot in Jaipur, Bikaner and Mumbai. The desert was really beautiful. It was actually very contrasting to see such huge fortress and the desert. We shot there in a few palaces too. It was beautiful. I hope to travel more in the future.

You are also an exceptional singer. How did you start?

Honestly, I just stumbled on it. I remember when I was in college, there used to be this underground movement in the campus where people would jam together. We started jamming together. At that time, for me, it was all just a distraction. But that's how it all started.

What do you enjoy the most -- acting or singing?

I love music. I love writing music and composing it. Music comes to me first. I had a seven years career in music so it means a lot to me.

Do you plan to stick around in Bollywood?

I never plan. It all just happened to me. I just like to go with whatever comes my way. So, if something interesting comes my way, I'll see to it. But after this film, I plan to go back to Pakistan. I've something going there.

How do you stay fit and healthy?

I try my best as I am diabetic. Few years back I used to eat anything and never bothered about my weight. But then I finally dared myself to lose all my body fat and I went from 37 to 30 waist size. It was a great boost for me as I felt healthier. I am much dedicated to health now.

Finding success

Homi Adajania's quirky comedy, Finding Fanny, collected Rs 19.9 crore over the weekend in India and $ 1.6 million from the overseas market to record a thundering start at the box office. The film is being hailed as the break-out film of 2014!

Riding on tremendously positive reviews and great word of mouth, the movie witnessed steady growth day on day and the makers are thanking the audiences for their continued support for the film.

"The weekend windfall of ~19.9 crore across India and $ 1.6 million internationally has surpassed all expectations. Initially the industry was overwhelmingly supportive and now the audiences have made Finding Fanny their own. Maybe niche is the new cool and experimental isn't a profanity for a producer anymore. I'm glad we took this chance because it's much more than just the commerce," says Dinesh Vijan, the producer of Finding Fanny.

Vijay Singh, CEO, Fox Star Studios, says, "Finding Fanny has set a new benchmark in the industry. It's success only proves that there is no formula when it comes to filmmaking. A good film will be accepted, owned and supported by audiences. They have become the evangelists of the film and we are proud that we supported this gem of a film that is certainly the break out film of this year."

The film stars Deepika Padukone, Arjun Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia, Pankaj Kapur and Naseeruddin Shah. Finding Fanny is presented by Fox Star Studios.

Welcome to Vartak Nagar

Kolkata's homegrown production house Adarsh Telemedia in association with Dione Entertainment have in the recent past teamed up with Kunal Kohli to produce their maiden Bollywood venture, Vartak Nagar—The Story Of Four Crows.

Vartak Nagar, directed by the debutant Atul Taishete, stars Jimmy Sheirgill as a powerful underworld don and Raghu Ram a mill union leader.

Set against the Great Bombay Mill Strike and the gangster era of the 1980's, the film deals with the lives of four lower middle class school-going friends and their lives as impacted by the strike, their loss of innocence and their journey which takes them through the highs of friendship, the lows of betrayal and eventually redemption.

When asked why the producer Amit Agarwal chose a film like Vartak Nagar as his first foray into Bollywood, he said, "We explored many scripts from varying genres before deciding on Vartak Nagar. The film is a hard hitting film and for Kunal too this has been a step away from the romantic films that he is usually associated with. We were hunting for a film that mixed content with entertainment and as a story had a unique universal appeal. We are currently locking down on more Bollywood films as well and what we can promise is that each one of our future projects will be as content driven, as exciting and will be as universally appealing as Vartak Nagar."

Alia is unassuming: Arjun Kapoor

Arjun Kapoor has been linked pretty strongly with Alia Bhatt, his co-star in 2 States. He talks about her and his other co-stars.

Alia's attractiveness

She laughs from her heart and if she likes something she will grunt. She has got the nicest laugh in the world. Also, she's totally unassuming. She doesn't understand the meaning of the word. That's how unassuming she is. She's fearless too. She knows being an actor she's open to a lot of flak. But she's like 'I can take it on'.

Favourite co-star

Deepika Padukone. Because she's a friend. Even Priyanka's a friend. But Deepika and I go back a long way. I've known Deepika since her early days in the industry around seven-eight years back when she was dating Ranbir (Kapoor). We've bonded well since then. It's good between us. Ranveer (Singh) and I are good friends too.

Love and loneliness

Love is happiness, friendship, compatibility. If you are truly happy it must be love. I used to be happier earlier because I had my mother. Now, there is a void because of her absence that I just cannot fill.

Holiday in Mauritius

Vivek Oberoi had earlier cancelled his birthday plans for the promotion of Mega Blood Donation Drive. Apparently, Vivek wants to spend some quality time with his wife and son since he was busy with blood donation campaign on his birthday.

Vivek is now planning to make a short trip to Mauritius with his family before the shoot of his upcoming movie, Bank Chor.

Vivek, who always celebrates his birthday with cancer patients at Cancer Patients Aid Association) on September 3, couldn't celebrate with them this year. Vivek says, "This year I couldn't celebrate my birthday with my family as I was busy with blood donation drive. I have managed to squeeze out some time for them for a small trip before I start shooting.”

Standing ovation for Rani

Rani Mukerji was felicitated by the Commissioner of Police, Shri Satish Mathur at the end of the special screening for the Pune Police Department.

The actress was requested by the Pune Police Department to showcase them her brave work in Mardaani. Rani Mukerji who attended the screening yesterday got a standing ovation by the police officer.

Parting ways

After a lot of buzz around their relationship, Armaan Kohli and Tanisha Mukerji have split up. After the love fizzled out, they realised they did not have much in common and have decided to split up and be cordial with each other. That’s a dignified thing to do!

Sonam finds substance

Sonam Kapoor is getting meaty roles, finally. She will play an aspiring politician in her next film which is based on Anuja Chauhan's book Battle for Bittora.

Chetan’s new project

Chetan Bhagat is turning a producer with the movie adaptation of Half Girlfriend. Mohit Suri is the director and co-producer.

Taking Indian erotica forward
With her second fiction, Sita's Curse: The Language of Desire, Sreemoyee Piu Kundu unfurls the many folds of a middle-class woman's desires

Somewhere, behind closed doors, in her solitary world;

Somewhere, under the sheets with an indifferent lover;

Somewhere, is a woman who will not be denied…

Much like her protagonist, Meera, Sreemoyee Piu Kundu is also not going to be denied her fair share under the sun. A feminist erotica, as her book Sita's Curse is touted to be, is no desi 50 Shades of Grey or just another chic lit, as Sreemoyee was offered by four hefty publishers to make it, but story of a (or every, to an extent) middle class housewife. Sita's Curse has made it to the bestsellers' list, but more than that, what appeals to its author is the reader's response, who could connect to and come out with the book.

Inspired from a real instance, the book is entirely fiction. A journalist, Sreemoyee would see this extraordinarily beautiful woman, almost apsara like, in one of the chawls in Byculla (Mumbai), while travelling to work almost every day. And, she wondered about this woman's life. The result, a fiction that made Sreemoyee research extensively not only our long tradition of erotica but also a typical Gujju household, for the protagonist Meera belongs to a small town, Sinor of Gujarat, and moves to Mumbai post marriage.

The book touches issues like incest, exploitation by so-called religious gurus, sexual politics in a joint family, a married woman on the road to self discovery, porn and cyber sex, and culminates on July 26, 2005, a date that Mumbai had its tryst with nature's fury. "When I shared the book with publishers they wanted me to reduce the age of my thirtish protagonist by a decade; place her in an urban milieu, but I find so many layers in a middle-class, married woman that I didn't want to let go off the original."

We suddenly have an explosion of Indian fiction set in campus, but Sreemoyee would distance herself from such writings. It annoys her on how we, who gave rich erotica to the world including Kamasurta and Geet Gobind have suddenly had nothing coming in post Kamla Das and Ismat Chughtai. "Patriarchy, is it" she questions, "that has reduced our rich tradition of erotica to crass item songs or Honey Singh's numbers?" She wonders how today, we a country that has been rather progressive on the sexual front and has parents shying away from talking about sex to their children. "Look at our ancient texts; paintings or murals, there are women enjoying sexual orgies as much as men. And, it goes way beyond just physical; it's mystical, almost divine."

Through Sita's Curse, Sreemoyee sets her Meera free. This being her second fiction, the first, Faraway Music, was appreciated as well. She is ready with two of her next books, You've Got the Wrong Girl, a man comin g-of-age kind of story, and Cut!, a story based on a Marathi theatre thespian's work. A full-time writer, former lifestyle editor and PR person, Sreemoyee is all set to explore the female gaze (in contrast to male gaze) in an anthology of erotic stories by writers from the subcontinent.

She rues that writers in India still have to form a writer's guild or a union that safeguards their interests. "A bigger battle than being financially viable, being a full-time writer, is to keep that inner voice alive that's comes under threat to be silenced by the commercially driven book scenario that we have today. But, trust me, there are readers waiting for marginalised voices to be heard and appreciated," she signs off.

The formal launch of Sita's Curse is taking place on September 18, at Girl in the Cafe 17, 7 pm onwards.


Befitting title
It's the title, Sita's Curse, as much as the book that comes under attack, not towing the conventional scenario. Book's author Sreemoyee Piu Kundu explains, "For me the title of the book should justify the story. Of course, it doesn't have any mythological reference. But, like it or not, each one of us questions Sita's life; each man still hankers for Sita-like devotion and chastity in his wife to-be, almost venerated to a level of goddess. And, almost every woman still goes through agnipariksha; womanhood is as much a celebration as a curse with each one of us going through love, lust, loss, pain and self-finding, and hence, the title."

Don’t let age bog them down
Divya Dutta

I came back from Norway all rejuvenated, with some fond memories and some food for thought. We, in India, are spoilt with comforts of a support system and help all around. We have porters at airports and stations. The moment the train reaches a station, the porters are already inside, ready to pick your luggage. But, I did draw some parallels this time; everyone there is so self-sufficient! I was amazed to see these elderly people pulling their own heavy luggage into the compartment and putting it where it was supposed to be stacked. No haphazardness! I wondered if they would do with some help, but they were all very comfortable. I saw them getting up, buying their own coffee and lunch in the train cafe and even though a few 80+ people were too frail to walk, they, with full dignity, found their way to their seats and managed beautifully. My friend remarked, 'Why do they venture out at this age? They should rest at home.' I found that weird. Isn't it zestful to live it up till you live and enjoy your life till your last breath? Or is it better to consider yourself retired, as you wait for everyday to pass?

And in our own land, the moment we have kids, in most cases people will say, 'now life is done, abh to umar ho gayi!' Then, it's just work and kids, and life passes you by. At the time of retirement, they feel life's over; it's then time to rest and be home and let kids do the work. How many of our old couples would actually have a mindset of travelling alone at 70? We don't even let our elders be active enough to do what they like doing. "Arey, don't get up. I'll fetch you the water!" I'm not saying we shouldn't look after our elders. I'm saying let's not psyche them into leading lazy, tired lives with nothing to look forward to, except television and relatives. Why can't we as youngsters encourage our own to do what they love doing? Travel, hobbies, anything that makes them feel alive. Let them not feel older than they are; in fact, younger, brighter, happier and zestful. Was wondering if I'd ever have the guts to tell my mom to travel with friends. I'd be overprotective maybe. But, what I did was got mom her writing pad and her favourite pilot pen to get her to start writing stories, to go visit her friends alongside going to the clinic and watching her favourite TV shows. This one thing we must learn from the west — to feel young at heart, to do what you love doing. And yes, age no bar!

(Dutta is a Bollywood actress)

Beijing on platter!
The chefs at Taj, Chandigarh, have tried to create the perfect balance for Punjabi palate at their ongoing Chinese food festival
Somya Abrol

What would make a successful chef leave the familiar lanes of his hometown and battle it out in a would-be big town of India? The answer, as Chef Yaun Hi Shi claims, in his heavily accented English, is, "For the love of food; for the experience. I miss home a lot, but I like India and I like the food here."

Extending the love for his home cuisine further, Chef Shi and Executive Chef Sumant Dadhwal, Taj, Chandigarh, have brought forth a month-long Beijing Menu food festival at Black Lotus, Taj. For the fest, as Chef Dadhwal later puts it, the Chinese chef has brought back choicest herbs and sauces from the heartland of Oriental cuisine, Beijing. Though Chef Dadhwal believes that Punjabis are not exactly fond of experimentation, he says they've tried to keep the flavours for the fest as authentic as possible. "People are foodies here but they're very fussy. Their approach is very conservative. They might experiment with appetisers here and there, but for the main course, they prefer sticking to familiar Punjabi flavours. Even with Indian food, they prefer North Indian food only; even our South-Indian food doesn't get as good a response. But, for those who have been frequenting Black Lotus, this fest would be a welcome change. Chef Shi has introduced some very interesting dishes such as Rice Roll Sheet Vegetable (or Chicken Bean Sprout) Spring Roll, in lieu of the boring, old, deep fried maida spring rolls we've gotten ourselves used to," says Chef Dadhwal.

Quiz him about the authentic, mild Chinese flavours finding a liking in Punjabis' hearts, and Chef Dadhwal says, "We've got some heavy-on-flavour dishes such as Hot Plate Lamb Black Pepper, Chicken in Malha Sauce, Tofu, Squid & Prawn in Ginger-Onion Sauce with Pine Nuts, to appeal to heavy palates."

Some dishes on the Beijing Menu that get a thumbs-up from us are: Wolf Berry Coriander Fish Ball, Xing Su Ji (Crispy Chicken), Squid Black Mushroom Light Soya and Spinach Mushroom Egg Fried Rice. For the sweet tooth, you could try the Daarsan or the Date Pancakes.

(Meal for one: Veg ~1,200 plus taxes, non-veg ~1,500 plus taxes)


Breath of fresh air
Renowned landscapist Hardial Singh Johl launches his first book titled Trees in Urban Habitat
Amarjot Kaur

Hardial Singh Johl and Sarabjit Bahga As one of the few books that are penned in the ink of intellect and experience, with its words assembled to bring out concerns of the environment, Trees in Urban Habitat establishes itself as a book that's one of a kind. Written by a renowned landscapist, Hardial Singh Johl, and compiled by architect Sarabjit Bahga, the book explores several dimensions of plantation planning in the urban landscape. In conversation with Hardial Singh, who took as many as three years to write the book, we are told he drew much motivation to write the book while serving the Indian government as a landscapist, whereby he revitalised the landscape plans of the city.

"The significance of trees as natural air purifiers has often been understated," begins Singh, as he waxes eloquent about his reason for writing the book. "While working on the planning of tree plantation as a landscapist, my understanding of trees and their importance in the urban setup unveils the fact that one big tree can consume up to five tons of carbon monoxide and produce an equal proportion of oxygen," he adds. Singh also believes that it is crucial for a city to standard a tree plantation plan, about which his book elaborates on various techniques that could help in providing some fundamental techniques. "This book details on different varieties of trees, which will be best suited for a particular location with respect to the colour of the tree, its size, and its density," he says.

Meanwhile, Sarabjit Bahga, who assisted Singh in compiling his book, speaks fondly of his 25-year long association with him. "This book underlines fundamental principles of tree plantation planning, which are universally applicable," shares Bahga. The book explores ways in which architects and city planners can create buildings, parks and open spaces in the face of challenging unprecedented urbanisation. The book also lists out ways in which one can beautify small personal spaces like homes and gardens.

"We are planning to write the second edition of the book soon where we will explore the fundamental ways of gardening and deal with open spaces, specifically parks," Singh and Bahga sign off.

The book is available pan India on sites like Amazon.


Salman, being responsible

It's time for Bigg Boss to hit the TV screens once again and Bollywood star, Salman Khan, is back as the host for its eighth edition. He talks about what made him change his mind and more.

You had said that you will not host Bigg Boss again. So, what made you change your mind?

The show has become my responsibility and I owe it my loyal commitment. I just could not let it go. I did not like a few things that happened on the show last year. However, I sat down with the makers and cleared all those differences. As far as taking up a show is concerned, there are two reasons. Firstly, I have no work and secondly, if you refuse a show, you get to renegotiate your payment. So you see, it pays well if I say no first and then yes. (laughs)

How do you see yourself as a host?

If you see the show, I speak for people who are wrong and right. It is a host's responsibility to take a stand for the contestants. Sometimes, it looks like you are taking a stand for yourself, but it is for them, because you know exactly how they are being projected outside.

Rumour has it that you don't get along well with Gauhar Khan and Kushal Tandon. Is it true?

I've no personal problem with both of them. It was the creative team's decision to bring them back on the show. I could not do anything about it. Nevertheless, I believe that once you are out of the show, there is no way you can be back.

Who would you like to see inside Bigg Boss's house?

Sanjay Dutt! Remove him from jail, and bring him here. But I am sure he will say, 'Please get me out of Bigg Boss!' Trust me, it is a very difficult place to be in. 

Nandish buys a cricket team

Actor Nandish Sandhu, who already owns a restaurant, has now taken a second step into the world of entrepreneurship by buying a cricket team along with Manik Soni, Mrunal Jain, and Ajay Choudhary.

"I have always been a cricket lover and so when this opportunity came my way, I decided to go for it. I am stepping into business arenas which are clubbed with my own passions — be it food, cricket, etc. This way I won't get bored and at the same time I can continue balancing my acting career with these business opportunities that come my way," says Nandish Sandhu.

Twists and turns

Get ready for some interesting twists in the up and coming episodes of Jamai Raja. After dealing with the initial problems that cropped up and almost spoilt Roshni's Mehendi ceremony, Sid hopes that the rest of the ceremony will run smoothly. Little does he know that DD has planned and plotted ways to disrupt the wedding. Will Sid be able to combat DD's schemes at every step? Stay tuned to the show, Jamai Raja, to find out.


Chicken pox stalls Avni's show
Are you wondering why the pre-wedding celebrations of Avni in the show, Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya, are going on for so long? Because actress Kanchi Singh is down with chickenpox. She was shooting for her on-screen wedding before she fell ill. As a result, the wedding plot is still pending.


A friend indeed...
It's hard to find a good friend, but it's tougher so if you are a part of the entertainment industry. Actress Kavita Kaushik's dad has not been keeping well for the past few days and as soon as her friend, Sakshi Tanwar, got to know, she turned up at the hospital. Touched by Sakshi's endeavour, Kavita took to Twitter and praised her while writing: "She rightly deserves all the love and much more! Saakshi's my rockstar." We wish a speedy recovery for Mr Kaushik.


Navjot’s ad commitments
Navjot Singh Sidhu, who is currently seen on the popular show Comedy Nights With Kapil, has been appointed by Kolhapur-based Sanjay Ghodawat group as their brand ambassador for their consumer division. The group will be launching its Star 555 Namkeen in Maharashtra, Goa and Karnataka, and is looking at going pan India very soon.

The year ahead
Madan Gupta Spatu

If your birthday is September 18...

You are broad-minded, tolerant and generous, a compassionate person that can inspire others with imaginative ideas. While some of your feelings should be expressed, it is apt to keep the others repressed. In business, you are required to work hard and arrange funds for some sort of unforeseen expenses before you can clinch an important deal or sign a prestigious contract. Your attention is focused on communication and educational systems. You are likely to expand your horizons, possibly through contact with people from an entirely different background than yours.

Positive colours: Golden, red, white, yellow and cream

Select days: Tuesday, Friday and Thursday

Favourable numbers: 3, 6 and 9

Shabana AzmiGems recommended: Red coral and yellow sapphire

You share your birthday with actress Shabana Azmi (September 18, 1950, New Delhi), who has participated in many stage plays, including Tumhari Amrita. Shabana is ruled by two strong numbers, 6 and 9. While Venus will shine bright on her career, Mars will help her remain strong-minded and bold.



Astro Turf
P Khurrana

ARIES: The card "Eight of Swords" bestows Saturine influence, because of which, problems are bound to arise. A disagreement with your partner will not be resolved for a few days.

Tarot message: Try to avoid serious discussions with loved ones.

Lucky colour: Aqua blue

Magic number: 39

TAURUS: You may encounter some difficulties during the first half of the day. You may give some of your time to work in the hospitals or institutions and talk to those less fortunate than yourself.

Tarot message: Seek advice, but do not feel the need to stick to it.

Lucky colour: Crimson

Magic number: 48

GEMINI: Home and family affairs will be enjoyable. You will not be able to get teamwork going. Personal plans will be opposed by friends and will be much harder to carry out.

Tarot message: A shopping spree can set your budget aflutter beware. Lucky colour: Purple

Magic number: 36

CANCER: You are on the crest of a lucky wave. Do not sign new agreements. This will be a hectic day for businesspersons. Sit back and enjoy the day as it unfolds.

Tarot message: Make the best of a bad situation by being polite and understanding. 

Lucky colour: Deep red. 

Magic number: 59

LEO: Use your own judgment while taking important issues. Your family members may not like your association. Do not show your anger to anybody. A restless attitude is likely to prevail.

Tarot message: Spend time on fitness routines.

Lucky colour: Yellow

Magic number: 29

VIRGO: Make your choices wisely today. Family politics will bring power struggles. Talking about the issues with friends may be a distraction, but it will not make any difference to your situation.

Tarot message: Renew the energy in your relationship.

Lucky colour: Forest green

Magic number: 47

LIBRA: You card "Ten of Wands" shows deception influence. You will feel irritated at work. A new deal may bring monetary gains. Women: control your diet, and focus on exercise.

Tarot message: Adopt a diplomatic approach.

Lucky colour: Orange

Magic number: 61

SCORPIO: Youngsters may feel a bit lethargic. New work may next prove lucrative. You can safely delegate responsibility of work to others. A chance encounter with a stranger may leave your heart beating. 

Tarot message: Do not make rash decisions when angry or upset. 

Lucky colour: Saffron. 

Magic number: 30

SAGITTARIUS: You are unlikely to have any major difficulty today. A Taurean plays a major role in your life. Your card "The Lovers" brings happiness your way.

Tarot message: Keep your eyes and ears open for new and exciting opportunities. 

Lucky colour: Peach

Magic number: 42

CAPRICORN: Students: do not neglect your work.A foolish obligation should be dropped. Spend the morning in the bed reading the newspapers and then stroll down to your favourite café for breakfast. 

Tarot message: Do try to be as charming as possible in all situations. 

Lucky colour: Mauve. 

Magic number: 25

AQUARIUS: Get to work early because as the day unfolds, everything can become disjointed. An influential person may acknowledge your work. 

Tarot message: Stop thinking about yourself and see what you can do for others.

Lucky colour: Silver grey

Magic number: 40

PISCES: No matter what problems might arise, you will achieve success. The job seekers could have a couple of interviews and get both jobs. A business deal is likely to go through and give you a more secure income.

Tarot message: Take the life the way it comes. 

Lucky colour: White

Magic number: 52

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 |