Blogdosts, do you agree? Do you like the image? I do! There are so very many stories in the photograph. Check out the guy on the right, clicking the glam gal on his camera. It happens all the time. Can celebs do anything about it? Naah. Not really.
Tomorrow afternoon at 5 pm, Mr. Amitabh Bachchan will be kicking off a global initiative when he launches Parikrma's unique Jeanaration programme at the Taj Land's End Hotel, Mumbai. It's interesting to see how this drive finally pans out. The idea is simple: Parikrma, a Bangalore-based NGO headed by the dynamic Shukla Bose, gets top stars to donate a pair of signed jeans for a worthy cause. These jeans are then auctioned on e-bay at the celebrity site. All the money generated goes towards providing world class education to the poorest, under-served kids, who would otherwise languish without the slightest hope of a better life. Parikrma has already seen over a 1000 kids through school and college during the 10 years of its existence. With this fresh impetus, many more will benefit.
Mr. Bachchan was kind and generous when I approached him, even though he is shooting non-stop for KBC, leaving home at 8 a.m. and often getting back at 10 p.m. He works much harder than people half his age. I felt guilty asking him to carve out time for Parikrma. We deeply appreciate his good will. And the kids haven't stopped smiling!
The Big B turns 70 this October. A little bird tells me there are major plans afoot to celebrate his landmark birthday in style. One of these involves 70 artists and 70 artworks. Ssssh! My lips are sealed... but going by what I have seen, this one is going to be a whopper of a birthday! Why not? Which other mega star has earned it in quite the same way?
How was Dilli? How CAN Dilli be? I had a one point agenda - to meet the new U.S. Ambassador - the first lady to be posted as the American Ambassador to India. It marks an important first and sends out the right signal, given her interests in women and child issues. I enjoyed meeting Nancy Powell - and welcome to India, Madam Ambassador!
There was a bonus thrown in as well. I met Manushi founder and passionate champion of women's rights, Madhu Kishwar, at the American reception, and invited her back to the hotel to have dinner with me. Over a two hour meal ( I had a brilliant foie gras omlette at 'Machaan'), we discovered we had several similar concerns. She has just won an important case defending the rights of cycle rickshaw pullers to ply their trade fairly. Well done, Madhu.