Thursday, August 11, 2022
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Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier


A girl from Adivasi Pada feeds a deer outside her home in Borivali’s Sanjay Gandhi National Park.

The boozy backdoor entry

Tipplers in SoBo can now make their way to a new watering hole, inside La Pôz Place at Kalaghoda. The Backdoor Bar is located away from the main dining room of the vegetarian restaurant, founded by restaurateur Kaneesha Jain. Behind the counter is Brinston Lemos, head of operations and bar, who promises to whip up a heady blend of in-house concoctions and classics, such as gin-infused with organic raspberries and grapefruit, and vodka with cream cheese and truffle oil. “One can easily access the bar via a separate entrance or can walk through the restaurant. This allows patrons access it directly for a quick imbibe or for a long, relaxed evening,” he told us. 

Brinston Lemos

A father’s run for justice

A father’s run for justice

Ashraf Nasim Ansari, a father of two, reached Shirdi yesterday morning as part of his prayer run from Mumbai to create awareness about parental alienation, a term used for situations where a father or mother has been deliberately kept away from their child following a matrimonial conflict. Ansari told us, “In parental alienation, a child is also told that they have been abandoned by the alienated parent when the said individual is being restricted from meeting their kid. Despite a child’s need for both parents being a constitutional right, the judicial system makes the father or mother feel like a criminal. On Father’s Day, I completed a 236-km journey, hoping for change. Running ensures good health and keeps negative thoughts at bay.”    

Richa’s social side

Richa’s social side

Actor Richa Chadha had a unique celebration this weekend. A mix of independent artistes, poets and storytellers joined Chadha and Krishan Jagota in Bandra’s Pioneer Hall to mark a year of their social community, Kindry. For the actress, it was a double bill, as the celebration coincided with the completion of her women-only Undercurrent lab’s workshop for music day. “The girls from the lab were also in attendance,” she told us. For a party with a difference, the food needed to be so. Tribal Tadka, a tribal women’s initiative to help the residents of Aarey forest, catered to the event. “Since we are hoping to build a Kindry community, it made sense to involve another community initiative,” Chadha shared with us.

Symphonies with Ustad

Symphonies with Ustad

This diarist brings good news for all those musicologists in the city who are researching ancient ragas. A new series called Library Sessions with Amjad Ali Khan on the YouTube channel, Sarod Records, aims to take professional musicians and students of music back in time. The maestro shared with us that the inspiration for the sessions struck him during the pandemic when he discovered his instrument in new light. “In these recorded sessions, I perform ragas that I haven’t played in any concert earlier. They are rare and unpopular. Such ragas are also called acchop ragas. You can see me playing Do gandhar, Gauri and Gandhari todi, among others,” he explained. Looking back at the bleak times that we have all fought as a nation, the legend added, “The pandemic was one of the harshest blows to a performing artiste’s life. Classical music had come to a standstill. But, I did experience a rare kind of peace and serenity each time I sat with my sarod. With fewer distractions, I was able to meditate with music, and I thought that tranquility should be shared with lovers of music.” 

Deepti Naval in nostalgia mode

Deepti Naval. Pic/FacebookDeepti Naval. Pic/Facebook

While most memoirs depict the portrait of a person with a strong focus on their becoming, A Country Called Childhood — veteran actor Deepti Naval’s upcoming book — is centred on her being. As the title suggests, in this book, Naval narrates sights and sounds from her childhood that coincide with momentous years in history. She told this diarist, “People have approached me for an autobiography and biographies, too, but the idea never interested me. If there’s a story to share with the readers, it is from this part of my life. My childhood needed to be told.” Naval added that it was her dream to write about growing up in Amritsar in the 1950s and ’60s. The memoir that will be available in bookstores by the first week of July, charts out the actor’s romantic journey into cinema as a result of several contributing events in an unconditional Punjabi family and a fast-changing India.



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