OUTLOOK Wednesday 11 December, 1996
Dont Press Too Far

FIRST she blamed the lights, then her lenses. But it finally boiled down to the film press. It was D-day for Dastak and Sushmita Sen, former Ms Universe and heroine of the film was shedding copious tears. Not of joy though! All those widely reported subjects of scandal and silicon have finally caught up with her. "Though my debut film is being released today, it is the last thing on my mind. I want to clear all the controversies surrounding me," she said. Admitting that she had got "carried away" initially, she further added that "there was no need for people to ask personal questions", regarding her "artificial enhancements" and her "involvement with a married man". Having refuted all the rumours, Ms Sen has now sworn to be "quieter and will concentrate all energies on work". Tall order—though with her kind of height she just might be able to pull it off!

A Burning Issue

MAACHIS wasn't quite supposed to ignite Rajya Sabha member K.R. Malkani's passions. But that's precisely what happened. In a surprising special mention in the House, the BJP member demanded a ban on the film as "it unduly glamourised and glorified terrorists". Hardly expected since the film is partly financed by R.V. Pandit, who was an MP in the 1980s on a BJP ticket. Pandit, who was also the publisher of the now-defunct Imprint magazine continues to be an active member of the party. In fact, the film was inspired by a series of articles which the magazine carried on the Punjab problem. Meanwhile, director Gulzar maintains a stoic silence on the entire issue.

Heralding the New Woman

YES, Hema Malini is making a comeback—choosing to push a pen instead of her starry luck too far. "Not exactly," says an editorial voice from New Woman. "As editor, she will lend her name and glamour to the new magazine. She will approve the editorial content and throw up ideas and suggestions; but she will probably put pen to paper only in an agony aunt column." At an invitation price of Rs 20, the monthly is slotted to hit the stands in the month of December. Hema apparently has the editorial expertise as she is also the editor of the 10-year-old Meri Saheli, a magazine from the same group. Between bringing up kids and bringing out a magazine, the dream girl of 'garam Dharam' seems bent on proving she is no cold fish herself.

Worldly Concerns

IRENE Skliva may have worn the crown but the real queen of socialite evenings and starry nights is Parmeshwar Godrej. A lineup of beauties—and we're talking about cars here—outside her legendary Juhu bungalow in suburban Mumbai, showed just how much hers is always the happening place in town. The occasion was a social do to introduce Miss World to the celeb circle in the city. Both Irene in beige, and Parmeshwar in white wore cleavage clinchers, the winner of this round was undisputed. And none—not Shekhar Kapur, Harsh Goenka, Milind Som-an, Rani Jeyaraj, Anil-Tina Ambani, Rahul Bajaj, Dimple Kapadia, Jaya Bachchan...—were unhappy about the 'indecent exposure'. Meanwhile, in the course of searching for Miss World and the Supermodel of the Year, Ms Godrej has lost her voice. "When I find the time, I'll search for that one too," she quips.

  • NEWS

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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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