OUTLOOK Monday 02 February, 2004
Ray Roman(ce)

Turns out the prurient speculations of the Ray-besotted Bengalis were right after all. In astonishing excerpts of her autobiography, Amaader Katha (Our Story), Satyajit Ray’s wife Bijoya all but confirms that the handsome genius had an affair with Madhabi Mukherjee, the actress who became Charulata. Madhabi recanted on an old signed confession to issue a hasty denial. When caught, Ray was repentant and “never looked at another woman”, says Bijoya. Now, that’s a dampener for those who ceaselessly offer lists of Ray’s women.

Dove-Eyed Damsel

Indo-Pak thaws do have glamorous spin-offs. Reema, the blue-eyed Lollywood babe, is in Mumbai to enlist Indian singers for her directorial debut Koi Tujh Sa Kahan. A veteran of 175 films, she had kicked up dust with “Dil dil Hindustan, jan jan Pakistan.

Karl's Angels

WSF ’04 has thrown up a new phalanx to combat the math of infinite justice. Captain Lakshmi Sehgal, Shirin Ebadi and Arundhati Roy have pledged to enforce a global bandh and forcefully shut down imperial cornershops. Watch out!

Prez Duet

Come Republic Day and it’s time for some patriotic jugalbandi. This time, it’s starring A.R. Rehman on the keys and President Abdul Kalam on the lyrics. Titled ‘One Vision, One World,’ this concert in Mumbai has been organised by save The Children India. The Prez had a preview and apparently loved it.

Beauty 'n The Bar

Another beauty trophy for Ash. This time from, that too, beating the likes of Keira Knightley and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Also set to make her Hollywood debut, life was looking due north if it hadn’t been for a summons by the Bandra court. K.K. Shetty, an estate agent, has sued Rai for not paying Rs 3.5 lakh as brokerage for her Rs 1.8-crore flat.


Harrison Ford has been left with a staggering £50 million bill following a divorce from his wife of 18 years, Melissa Mathison. Estimated to be the costliest divorce in tinsel town history, it supersedes the erstwhile topper, Tom Cruise-Nicole Kidman’s £46 million deal.

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  • Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla started designing trousseaus fit for a princess for the catwalk when designers weren’t famous in their own right. Thi­rty-three years on, they are well-known now, and celebrated with a show in Mumbai, They dressed up the reliably gorgeous Deepika in this intricately woven, ivory-embellished lehenga. At the end of the walk, she broke into a jig. For joy, certainly. But, given an inch, Bollywood will out!
  • With every conceivable sporting activity speedily shuffled up into a corporatised league for maximum milking, it’s unsurprising that the annual boat race on the Punnamada lake inaugurated the Cha­mpions Boat League. Sachin, outrigged by Kathakali dancers, spoke of Kerala’s resilience in the face of floods and its passion for cricket.
  • For all his Bhangra moves, Justin Trudeau had a diplomatically disastrous tour of India, but the boyishly handsome Canadian premier  rem­ains a darling of the masses, especially swooning womenfolk. It was no surprise then that at an informal gaggle of world leaders at the G7 summit, Melania turned to  him for a peck, as the weight of the world kept the scowl fixed on Donald’s face. As a Twitter wag put it: “Find someone who looks at you like  Melania looks at Trudeau.”
  • Our nationalist cine workers associations have passed a diktat—anyone who dares to perform in Pakistan will be ostr­acised henceforth. Poor Mika Singh peddled his fare at a Pakistani wedding and was, consequently, banned from performing in India. Our steadfast protectors didn’t stop at this—Mika is in Salman’s entourage for a US tour, so they have theatened the superstar with a shut-out too if.... Appeal to our dearest Bhai: flex those muscles, do, and call these cowards out.


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