OUTLOOK Monday 31 December, 2001
A Decade of News

A decade in Delhi and The Pioneer celebrated it in style last week in the capital. The venue? Of course The Imperial and its Raj-styled premises—a fitting tribute to former columnists Rudyard Kipling and Winston Churchill. And when editor and MD Chandan Mitra stepped aside to let Vinod Mehta, the first editor, cut the cake, the sense of camaraderie was only too obvious. Even the PM couldn’t escape the infectious mood—addressing those present at a symposium organised for the occasion, he paused between Chandan Mitra and mitron, saying it was a good sign that one followed the other.

Fighting Queens

If you are a purist, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas is not for you. In Sarat Chandra Chatterjee’s original, Paro and Chandramukhi never meet. Guess what is Bhansali’s climax scene? A “dance competition” between Mrs Nene and Aishwarya Rai, apart from a heavy dose of some “acidic dialogues”. Some concession to market demands, huh?

Erotica on the Coffee Table

Song and dance over a book? No less than Shubha Mudgal and Shovana Narayan sang and danced in celebration of Indian Erotica. Roli’s launch of India Habitat Centre’s art consultant Alka Pande and British photographer Lance Vane’s hot coffee-tabler was a rousing success, with all of Delhi’s page three crowd—aspirants and chroniclers—assembled to toast the event.

Heir Apparent

A swirl of memories, hundreds of sloganeering supporters and thousands of banners—the AICC headquarter in the capital last week surely never looked the same in the recent past. Quite fittingly, the occasion was the induction of Jyotiraditya Scindia, the Harvard-Stanford alumnus son of the late Madhavrao, into the Congress. Here’s wishing all the best for this 30-year-old’s plunge into the dust and grind of Indian politics.

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  • She takes after her mother in so many ways: the shape of her  face, that smile, the way her hair  tumbles back. He, as you all can see, is an image of his dad (has he inh­erited that two-generation-old dimple?) Saif and Amrita Singh’s children Sara and Ibrahim Ali Khan are holidaying in England. This casual, happy chat over some Earl Grey does confirm what they say—the siblings are inseparable.
  • It’s bad enough to earn millions while having a talent for nothing exc­ept indecently hogging attention; it’s worse to lay claim to a venerable tradition in service to one’s base business ins­tinct. But what do you expect from Kim Kardashian, who had the audacity to name her upcoming shapewear line (to be worn inside) ‘Kimono’. While you condemn her for the usual  self-centredness (as millions did), laud her for knowing something  about a place as further afield as Japan. The  name, thankfully, stands withdrawn.
  • Though the Trinamool cut a sorry figure, then took its rev­erses badly, our favourite MPs from Bengal—close pals  and actresses Mimi Chakraborty and Nusrat Jahan, were unt­ouched by the sour petulance. Fresh from Nusrat’s wedding in Turkey, and so absent when other MPs took their oaths in Parliament, the duo did the needful later, not forgetting to use ‘Jai Bangla’. Didi is happy; can’t say we aren’t, too!
  • Blink, and you’ll travel back to the glory days of disco, with Cardi B’s multi-­coloured jumpsuit transporting you effortlessly. But, disaster struck at the Bonnaroo Music Festival in Man­chester, when this splendid  garment gave way along its nether seams, hurrying poor Cardi  offstage.  The singer arrived minutes later in a bathrobe, the picture of unfl­a­ppability. “We gonna keep it sexy,”  she crooned. That is style.


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