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Malavika’s Mumbaistan: Fairy tales and fashion shows

mumbai Updated: Apr 23, 2018 12:25 IST
Malavika Sangghvi
Malavika Sangghvi
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Malavika’s Mumbaistan,Fairy tales

(LtoR) Ranbir Kapoor, Manish Malhotra and Deepika Padukone at the Mijwan fashion show.

The seventh edition of the Manish Malhotra-Mijwan collaboration was presented at a hotel in Juhu on Thursday amidst much glamour. We spotted Asha Parekh and Waheeda Rehman, Dimple Kapadia and Neetu Singh, Saiyami Kher and Huma Qureshi (the last two dressed in exquisite Malhotra creations). Founded by poet and lyricist, the late Kaifi Azmi, and named after his UP hometown, the NGO, headed jointly by his daughter Shabana Azmi and Namrata Goyal, daughter of Nita and Naresh Goyal of Jet Airways, has come to be associated with its annual fashion extravaganza showcasing the region’s Chikankari work.

Each year, the show manages to rope in Bollywood’s A-listers to walk the ramp and this year, Mijwan’s brand ambassador Ranbir Kapoor himself had been billed as the show stopper, and what’s more he would be teamed with none other than top actress and his former paramour, Deepika Padukone herself. To say this combination had unleashed a frenzy of excitement weeks in advance would be an understatement. There were many in the audience who were looking forward to seeing them together, if only for the duration of the show to revive past glory.

And so, as the couple made its graceful entrance together at the end of the evening, holding hands as they walked across the room, the audience bedazzled already by a surfeit of beauty in the form of Malhotra’s exuberant oeuvre of, almost appeared to gasp in delight.

Because as Kapoor stood, slim and handsome, in a flamboyant black-and-white embroidered jacket, waiting for Padukone (dressed in an all-white ensemble) to walk up to him, the image, so redolent of a church wedding ceremony, was not lost on any one and many who sighed at what could have been. It took Shabana to announce feistily, “C’mon folks, the show is over, it’s time to get up and go home now!” to break the spell and remind all that fashion shows, like fairy tales, do not last forever.


Long before Shashi Tharoor cornered the ‘walking-talking Englishman’ market, there was Kabir Bedi. With his Oxford educated parents — his British mother later became the first woman to be an ordained Buddhist nun — and his public-school educated theatre and advertising background and his famous baritone, Bedi’s claim to the thinking woman’s polished pin-up were far more consolidated.

Kabir Bedi (left) with Shashi Tharoor (right).

How Tharoor became India’s leading Westernised Oriental Gentleman (WOG) is a bit of an enigma, say his friends. Though born in London, his parentage was completely Indian and he completed most of his education between Yercaud, Mumbai and Kolkata, followed by post-grad degrees at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, Massachusetts, United States (where his academic brilliance saw him complete his PhD at the age of 22) the mystery of how he acquired the marbles in his mouth English accent is unsolved. In fact, given his many years spent in the USA as a high-ranking UN official, if Tharoor had to have any accent at all-it ought to have been American one! But no, as is known, his celebrated mellifluous Queen’s English is a thing of beauty and a joy forever. Which leads us to conclude that, perhaps, it is the St Stephen’s College, Delhi, and especially its theatre activity, that might have been the culprit. As is known, both Tharoor and Bedi studied there, (of course more than a decade apart) and both happen to be leading lights of its theatre initiatives during their college years.

No surprises then that last week, when following his discussion with Anil Dharker at the Tata Theatre on his book Why I am A Hindu, Tharoor dropped in at the home of a SoBo-based industrialist for a cozy dinner in his honour, and he came face-to-face with Bedi, the two men dispensed with the usual social niceties and small talk and got straight to the point.

“Shashi, what’s with using all those big words, it’s becoming a bit of a joke,” was Bedi’s opening gambit to his younger college mate.

And Tharoor? He dismissed Bedi’s remark with a shrug, a toss of his famous locks and something mumbled under his breath.

Boys will be boys.


‘Our daughter Poorna is recently engaged to Namit Soni, son of Anuradha and Vijay Soni’ the mail from former Civil Aviation Minister and NCP leader Praful Patel and wife Varsha read. ‘The wedding celebrations will take place in Mumbai in July,’ it went on to say, thus putting to an end many speculations on the date and venue of the much-awaited nuptials in the high profile family.

The attractive Poorna, who had found herself in the spotlight during her IPL stint, had recently been engaged to Soni, and given her dad’s political clout, which sees his popularity cutting across party lines and his NCP being a potential king pin during the next general elections, not to forget his standing as a tycoon in his own right, the wedding details had attracted much notice.

Soni is the managing director at Namco Industries and is a graduate from Fisher College of Business, America. It’s a big one on Mumbai’s social calendar.

First Published: Apr 23, 2018 12:24 IST