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SECRET SUPERSTAR ZAIRA WASIM: “I Don’t Relate To Any Of My Characters, I Don’t Know How To Act Actually!”


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RAJKUMMAR RAO “You Probably Haven’t Really Seen The Real ‘Rajkummar’ In Any Of My Characters.”

“Music Is One Department I’m Weak In.” SS RAJAMOULI Bãhubali Director

‘‘I Was Doing Some Pretty Trashy Work Before. Jab We Met Saved My Ass.’’ SHAHID KAPOOR ON STARDOM, PADMAVATI & MORE...



Mujhse Shaadi Karogi is one tricky question the Tiger from Tiger Zinda Hain, Salman Khan is definitely not asking any pretty damsel in a hurry. And even though alleged girlfriend lulia Vantur flits around the Sultan like a bee hungry for honey or ex-girlfriend Katrina Kaif makes startling overtures especially on the social media to the superstar, Salman refuses to budge. Oh no! Marriage is still a bad word for this eternal bachelor. In fact, ask his family, and they insist that the Khan of all Khans, Salman prefers to go out with his bodyguard Shera more than any of the beauties chasing him. Hmm, 50 plus or not, here’s one Khan who refuses to take up the marriage bait! OOOOO

Anushka is in a lot of hot waters as a Chinese website has accused the brand of plagiarism. What?! We do know that Bollywood is a hotbed for plagiarism especially of music, films and scripts but now a case of design plagiarism too? Not so ‘Nush’ Anushka, ya?! OOOOO Here’s a bit of Anushka overdose… Recently this leggy lass was seen uploading a selfie with the King Khan’s vanity van in the background, which she apparently took from the window of Yash Raj Studio. This post was reposted by Shah Rukh Khan who however added to the jocular vein by telling Anushkha that he would report her act as stalking. Ha Ha! Over to you Anushka! OOOOO

Talking about bait, if the Bollywood whistle blowers are to be believed, it looks like the Jab Harry Met Sejal actor, Anushka Sharma and her cricketer beau, the dashing Virat Kohli are soon heading for holy matrimony. Supposedly, the madly in love couple have realised that they just can’t live without each other and the logical solution for that is, of course, marriage. But Anushka being the gal of today, has added a whole host of conditions including one that she will not stop working after marriage. But is that a spoke in the wheel? Naah! Virat being a man in love has given in to all her conditions, and wedding bells are definitely on the cards next year. OOOOO Talking of Anushka, all ‘n’ sundry know that she’s a natural actor with an impeccable comic timing. But did you know that Anushka is also keenly following the Veere Di Wedding hottie Sonam Kapoor’s footsteps? And before we start another catfight, lets clarify, yes, we’re talking about Anushka introducing her clothing line Nush just like how one Ms Kapoor did with her brand Rheson. But wait a mo’, there’s trouble in paradise already. Supposedly, the brand introduced by

The Padmavati beauty Deepika Padukone was spotted having a blast at practically all the Diwali parties thrown by the High Rollers of Mumbai. But surprise of surprises, either she was hanging on to a dapper looking KJo or one of Ranbir Kapoor’s best pals, Aditya Roy Kapoor. Where was alleged boyfriend Ranveer ‘Alauddin Khilji’ Singh? We know he was definitely in town. So are things not so good in paradise? By the way recently, Dippy described her relationship status as “complicated”. According to her, “not too many guys can cope with a woman’s success”. Hmmm! Something sure is rotten in the state of Denmark! OOOOO

normally very elusive with the Mumbai media, very graciously posed for pictures with fans, warmly smiled at all, stopped to talk to the media and even gave bytes to the local interviewers there. Perhaps the relaxed ambience of this paradise isle injected the bonhomie chilled out feel. …Carry on Rani, we say! OOOOO

Talking of romance, Viveck Oberoi was recently spotted enjoying some moments of peace ‘n’ quiet with his gorgeous wife Priyanka off the paradise isle of Mauritius on a super romantic island called the Ile des Deux Cocos. And to get the zingy calypso feel, a lavish party was thrown by the Mauritius authorities on the sandy beaches of the island. And Viveck being one of the guests of honour, walked in with wife in tow, commenting that, ‘the island looks as gorgeous as a Bollywood set’. But what was super cute was that though the pretty lady kept retreating back, Viveck would continuously pull her in front saying, “My wife is too gorgeous to stand aside.” Aww! OOOOO The maha ‘rani’of Yash Raj Films, the super talented Rani Mukerji was in Mauritius too. She was there to collect an award for her outstanding contribution to films given by Mauritius. And she was super happy more so as her daughter l’il Adira was with her. What was surprising was that Rani who is

Did we say carry on…? Well, supposedly the glittering Diwali parties in Tinsel Town are a hot bed for budding romance. And if the goss is to be believed, the Jagga Jasoos star Ranbir Kapoor and the Udta Punjab rockstar Alia Bhatt were seen looking rather cosy with each other. In fact, after a certain party, they were allegedly seen getting into a car with bum chums Ayan Mukherji and Aditya Roy Kapoor, looking very into each other. So much so that Alia almost landed on Ranbir’s lap. …Perhaps the luxe car was too small for these large hearted hotties! OOOOO Talking about Alia, …Alleged ex-couple Sidharth Malhotra and Alia Bhatt were recently spotted together having a great time, clicking fun selfies at Manish Malhotra’s Diwali bash. Not only that, the duo went party hopping to Sanjay Kapoor’s Diwali bash, and even left the party together.

Just to rewind a bit, in the past months, ill winds had befallen this lovely couple. Supposedly, our Siddy boy had allegedly fallen madly in love with the Sri Lankan temptress Jacqueline so much so that the parking spot in Sidharth’s building which was reserved for Alia, was being kept solely for Jacqueline’s car. And now, Sid’s hanging out with Alia again? Hmmm… What’s cooking? OOOOO

affair with co actor Niharika Singh which he says the first meeting started from the bedroom itself. And though Niharika is screaming herself hoarse saying that she didn’t know he was married during their affair and this was all a publicity stunt by Nawaz just to hype up the the sale of the book. It sure looks as if it worked as the book is surely climbing to the hot list of bestsellers, and has become viral online too. OOOOO

And if we are talking about hotties, the smouldering hot Bipasha Basu and her hubby dearest Karan Grover have at last bagged an ad campaign as a couple. Of course, since the ‘monkey couple’ still can’t keep their hands off each other even after a year of marriage, the campaign is not surprisingly a condom brand. And the sensuous ‘touchy feely’ ad has a sex overdose and can give anyone goosebumps. … Talk about bringing their bedroom secrets out in the spotlight. But no worries, at least this out-ofwork couple has got something to do! OOOOO Like the very talented Nawazuddin Siddiqui who has also jumped onto the band wagon of autobiographies. He along with a co-writer recently released his autobiography titled An Ordinary Life and the book is selling like hot cakes more for its kiss ‘n’ tell segments. Nawazuddin has spoken about his very lustful love life very candidly even to the extent of talking about his

Talk about being viral online, yummy mummy Lisa Haydon still remains the sexiest Mommy in our poll. Recently, she posted the first picture of her little munchkin Zack floating around in a baby pool with Mommy dearest looking super-hot in an itsy bitsy bikini. She was giving li’l Zack his first swimming lesson and sure looked like both mumma and baby were having a gala pool time! …And so were the bikini watchers! OOOOO

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Birds of the same feather, flock together… This is so true of the rockstar of Secret Superstar, Zaira Wasim. Debut director Advait Chandan recently revealed that more than Mr Perfectionist Aamir Khan himself, Zaira doesn’t do anything until and unless she is completely convinced about it. In fact, he emphasised that in the entire film though he did not change a single line in the script for Aamir, he had to do that for Ms Wasim several times over as she just wasn’t easily convinced about her lines. Hola! Sure looks as if Zaira seems to be another perfectionist in the making! OOOOO While we are on this 17-year-old superstar, we must tell you that Zaira recently confessed that she is an extremely anti-social person so much so that she doesn’t even make eye contact while conversing. She just likes surfing on her phone and staying away from people. So does she like the movies? Umm… not really, Zaira avers that she just isn’t a fan of movies. It was just destiny that decreed her to become an actor, she says.

hunky dory until a fan rushed upto Arjun to click a selfie getting the disgruntled paps in a tizzy. But when the media started hurling abuses at the fan, Arjun’s temper skyrocketed. He yelled at the unruly paps, ‘batameez hai aap log. Is tarike main koi baat karta hai aadmi se. Main aap logo ke saath bahot tameez se paish aata hoon lekin aap log bahot batameez ho gaye hai. Yeh kya tarika hai yaar’? Nice, Arjun! It sure is great to see a star take a stand for his fans! OOOOO Sibling love is brewing on the Pali Hill block! And, how! Sanjay Dutt recently threw a grand party for the festivities. And surprise of surprises, when Sussanne Khan entered Sanju Baba’s home, he held her hand, kissed her on her forehead, clicked umpteen number of pictures with her and yelled, “Behen hai meri, sabse acchi behen hai meri.” (She is the best sister). Wonder what his actual sis Priya has to say about that?! OOOOO

OOOOO Recently, the Mubarakan hunk Arjun Kapoor was seen at one of the multiplexes watching Judwaa 2. He walked out of the theatre fancy free and happy, gave bytes to the media, and got the perfect poster boy expression on for the pap’s. All was

The Ek Toilet… actor Bhumi Pednekar has given two smashing hits in a row, and we can’t stop admiring her. Not only because she is a fab actor but also because the young lady also warms the cockles of our hearts with her candid confessions. From saying, she wishes Shoojit Sircar had cast her instead of Deepika Padukone in Piku to insisting that she should be cast as a freedom fighter for she’d be the best historical character ever. Ahem ahem… looks like this young star is not just eyeing the bhoomi but the aasmaan too. OOOOO

Some time back, the sizzling hot Esha Gupta had taken the Insta world by the horns with her super racy ‘nude’ pictures. This was just before her film Baadshaho was up for release, and one did think that the smokin’ hot insta feeds from this starlet would get the public into the theatres in droves. But perhaps her pictures in the buff was too much for the audience to handle more so she hadn’t left anything to the imagination for the yawning public, who shunned her film like it was an untouchable. This sure looks like another case of a publicity stunt going phut. OOOOO

SRK’s gorgeous daughter Suhana Khan was recently spotted hanging out with her BFFs - star kids Ananya Panday and Shanaya Kapoor. And they all seem to be having a blast until suddenly, a panic-stricken Suhana rushed off abruptly leaving her friends absolutely bewildered. Oh yes, it was the bane of Suhana’s life - those pap’s again. The last unfortunate experience with the shutterbugs had left Suhana in tears. This time ‘round, she didn’t want to SOS daddy dearest for help so she rushed off like a headless chicken in a panic. As for her BFFs, they found poor Suhana’s behaviour super hilarious and were seen rolling over laughing about it. Poor gal! OOOOO

Star kids are definitely making headlines - be it Suhana Khan, Sara Ali Khan, Jhanvi Kapoor or others. But more than them, it’s the star toddlers who have caught the fancy of the nation. On one side, Saifeena’s adorable baby son Taimur is said to be one of the most searched babies on the net. On the other hand, Shahid and Mira Kapoor’s bundle of joy Misha has become the apple of everyone’s eye. No wonder, the gorgeous Shahid just can’t help but post umpteen number of pictures of his cutesy baby. …And we love them all! OOOOO

CAT’This S CROWN month goes to... Rajkummar Rao’s four huge back-to-back hits have not only won him rave reviews, it has also got him into the big league. With his film Newton getting him a lot of kudos from within the industry as well as the audience, suddenly he seems to be the flavour of the season and girls of various shapes ‘n’ sizes have been wooing the Bareilly Ki Barfi boy. In fact, supposedly his inbox is deluged with outpourings of love but the Newton man refuses to play ball. He insists he prefers to be glued to his live-in girlfriend Patralekha as, ‘Ek baar jo maine commitment kardi, uske baad toh mein apne aap ki bhi nahi sunta’ So cute!

From one cat to another, Meeeoow till next month!

Lights, Camera, Action! Director S S Rajamouli is indeed a whiz and the success of his blockbusters – Bãhubali The Beginning and Bãhubali The Conclusion- tell a tale of their own. At the Mauritius Cinema Week, SS RAJAMOULI gives a glimpse of his amazing techniques at his Master Class. Presenting a glimpse of how Rajamouli’s vision unfolds.


His film Bãhubali has been the biggest grosser of the year shattering prior Box office records of the Badshahs and Sultans of Bollywood to smithereens. In fact, worldwide over, this blockbuster has captured the imagination of the audience and has grossed over a mind-boggling figure of 1,000 crores. But if you do get to meet the director of this incredible film, you’ll be blown away by the humbleness of the man. …Yes, we are talking about SS Rajamouli who is the director of this mammoth blockbuster. Unassuming to the extent of being even a little shy, Rajamouli normally shies away

from interviews. However, he was at the Mauritius Cinema Week held in Mauritius where his films – Bãhubali The Beginning and Bãhubali The Conclusion - were heralded for their amazing visual power and originality. Incidentally, this visionary was a great draw with the public, and people from all walks of life in Mauritius were hankering to get his autograph or take a selfie with him. We were fortunate to attend his informative master class there and pick up a treasure trove of information on the man himself. …Presenting the magnificent SS Rajamouli … his thought process, his take on his stint in television, his writers, music and more.

Creatively I think, everything comes more from observation of people or subjects around you or from reading and observing.”

You began your career with television. How did that prepare you for the big screen? Yes, I did begin from television. And it did help me a lot. For instance, it helped me get some practical knowledge on how to deal with my technicians, actors or even day to day issues. But creatively, I don’t really think it helped me that much. Creatively I think, everything comes more from observation of people or subjects around you or from reading and observing. But of course, starting from television or even the ad films I made helped me master the practical knowledge of my art. You didn’t write your first two films - Student No.1 was written by K. Raghavendra Rao and M Ratnam, and Simhadri was written by M Ratnam. But you have worked closely with them. How was the experience….? A small correction… the first film was written by Pruthvi Raj. K Raghavendra is the producer. He’s also my mentor who gave me the chance to direct my first TV serial also my first film. The second film and most of my films since then were written by my father who is a scriptwriter.

I work very closely with writers. Definitely, very closely because the writers are people who give you the foundation to build on. So with every writer that I’ve worked with, I really like to understand what their vision is before I put my vision into it. Agreed, a story is a story but I definitely would like to know very closely from them, how they envision the final product. It might be a little bit different or whole lot different from how I’m envisioning it. But before anything else, I’d like to hear how they’re visualizing the film, and then build on it. Mind you, it’s not just that the writers give the script and their job is over. Even throughout the shooting and the post production process, I go back to them to check whether they had envisioned the scene the same way it was shot or whether that particular sequence was different from their vision. Was their vision better or was my vision better? And that keeps us on our toes… and this process goes on throughout the film. So it is a fact that I work very closely with my writers. How important is music for your films? My cousin M M Keeravani, who’s a music director, has loads and loads of experience not just in terms of music but also in terms of storytelling, and he

is normally my ‘go to’ man for music and I depend a lot on him to get the right sound. And when it comes to music, particularly the background music of a film, you have to be extra careful. For instance, there are times when I like a particular sequence of music very much but then I find that it is not gelling with the scene. So what I try to do is that when I’m sitting in the seat of a director, I try to see whether the music is conveying what the scene is about or enhancing that emotion that I want to tell in that particular scene or sequence. So it’s not just listening to the music but also seeing if the music fits in that particular scene. But this is a department I admit I’m weak in so I depend on very good technicians to do their job.

A still from Bãhubali

Smooth ‘n’ rich as dark chocolate, bold ‘n’ brilliant like fine red wine… Shahid Kapoor’s performances are always outof-the-box, layered and truly amazing. Is Padmavati going to be another feather in his cap? Is he insecure as an actor? Is he happy with his journey? … Presenting the versatile SHAHID KAPOOR in conversation with Sumita Chakraborty…

I Don’t Think Actors Who Don’t Have The Capacity To Do Something Extremely Layered And Of A Certain Standard Would Be Okay Working With Sanjay Leela Bhansali.


rom a stupendous act in Kaminey to an incredible stint in Haider; from the high voltage OTT Tommy Singh in Udta Punjab, to bringing in a quiet dignity, courage and regal tone to his character as Maharawal Ratan Singh in the magnum opus Padmavati, he has proved that he is indeed Bollywood’s best and in a league of his own. Perhaps it’s in his genes or maybe it’s his passion for his art but Shahid Kapoor has been quietly weaving his magic in the film industry and coming out with some mind-blowing performances. But if you think he believes in tomtomming this to the world and sundry, think again! Understated even to the extent of being restrained, Shahid doesn’t let his PR machinery go on an overdrive to announce his exploits, instead he lets his films talk volumes about his talent.

I am not the kind of person who waits for a film to release to decide how he feels about it.” Read on as Shahid Kapoor candidly talks about his magnum opus Padmavati, controversies and rumours, life as an actor and of course, his cute as a button daughter Misha. Congratulations Shahid, the first look of Padmavati is fabulous! And you especially have brought in a lot of dignity and subtleness to your character. So how was the experience of working in Padmavati ? Padmavati has now been one year of a journey. And I think this year has been dedicated entirely to my baby Misha and Padmavati. Padmavati is a huge part of my journey and is very close to my heart because I’ve literally put my blood and sweat into the film. It’s also my first experience working with Mr Sanjay Leela Bhansali, and I think words would fail to express how much gratitude I have towards him for teaching me everything and helping me in becoming this character. I also would like to say that it really is a privilege to play Maharawal Ratan Singh, a Rajput king who was a great warrior and a great king. Shahid, you look fabulous as Maharawal Ratan Singh! Thank you! But honestly I think it’s premature to talk about my look because looking good in a Sanjay Leela Bhansali film is really nothing of a great achievement. He makes certain that every character of his looks amazing. I think the true experience for the audience will be when they see the film and judge for themselves because like you said Maharawal Ratan Singh is a character who is restrained and dignified.And therefore he needs to be discovered in the film. But yes, I am very excited to know what people think about the film and about my character in the film. More so, because it was a huge step to create this character

and it required one year of my life. And I am at a stage in my career where I know that people expect me to do work of a certain quality and play characters which are different and new. And I think I have been able to do that in the last two to three years, especially with Haider and Udta Punjab coming in back-to-back. Maharawal Ratan Singh, is definitely a character that would be in that league if not better, if I may say so myself. It was an extremely iconic character and an extremely difficult character to play because he is very dignified and restrained. He is not going to jump and shout but there is a lot within him. There is a lot that the character goes through in the film, I guess with Maharawal Ratan Singh, it’s all in his eyes and I hope I portrayed that! Do you think Padmavati has tapped the ‘ultimate powerhouse performance’ that you’re looking for as an actor? Well, that’s what Sanjay sir

Though Ranveer and Deepika are friends, on the sets, we were our characters and that’s it!” told me when we met. He just looked at me and said, ‘Shahid just do this film, it is right for you at this point in your career. This character is right for you at this point in your career. And I really didn’t think of anybody else to play the character of Maharawal Ratan Singh except you. I think you’re right for it, and you should do it. And trust me, you will do it’. And there was so much honesty in the way he said that. There is so much credibility that comes with him as a filmmaker that I didn’t really need to think at all. And honestly, I signed the film without hearing the script. Obviously, he sent me the script and insisted that I read it (laughs) because of course, it was important for me to read it before I start.

But I said ‘yes’ to him just on the basis of the two lines that he said... ‘Trust me, you’ll be proud of being a part of this film and you will be proud of the role that I am offering you’. And I said ‘okay’, coming from you this is more than enough, and I just did it! Yes, I am not somebody who likes to talk prematurely. But I feel very content and excited, and I feel I took a very good decision by doing this film. I feel it very strongly because it’s been a year’s journey and then when you look back, you ask yourself was it all worth it? I am not the kind of person who waits for a film to release to decide how he feels about it because the reaction then is coloured with so many factors which are not really relevant beyond a point. Once I am done with the film. I ask myself, ‘Do I feel satisfied as an actor? Do I feel it was the right film for me to do’? And I can very proudly say that I am very, very happy and in fact, very grateful and thankful that I am a part of a film like Padmavati.

Deepika Padukone had once said that Sanjay Leela Bhansali is one director that makes an actor feel uneasy to the point that he or she gets creatively tuned. Do you agree with her? I understand what Deepika is saying and why she is saying it and I am sure she has her own way of expressing it. But I never felt uneasy with him though I always felt that I needed to up my game. I always felt like he is going to push me beyond what I have been pushed to. That’s just who he is - his standards are very high. And since he is very passionate about the film he makes and therefore, his focus is so strong, and his understanding is so detailed and complex that he makes you work at many levels. I don’t think actors who don’t have the capacity to do something which is extremely layered and of a certain standard would be okay working with him. I don’t think they’d be able to get through it because his standards are very high. So I felt challenged and pushed myself all the time. But I have been doing this for 15 years now and in the last few years, I’ve played some very complex characters. All of which I felt I was not good enough to play. (Laughs) So for me, I seek that kind of scenario, where you have to raise the bar, you have to get into spaces which are challenging and difficult to justify. And I feel my best work comes out of situations like that, for example, the speech in Haider… Yes, that was phenomenal! When Vishal sir gave it to me, I was blown away! He has worked with my father, Naseer uncle, Irrfan Khan, and Tabu…

I’ve played some very complex characters. All of which I felt I was not good enough to play.”

Sanjay Leela Bhansali told me, ‘I really didn’t think of anybody else to play the character except you’.” the greats. None of them ever had a two and a half page monologue. And he gave it to me! The kind of pressure that created was immense but today when I look back, I feel it’s one of the most defining moments in my journey as an actor. Shahid, are you trying to enter the league of your Dad Pankaj Kapoor, Nasseruddin Shah, Om Puri… Arey yaar! I don’t think I can ever be in that league I can only learn from them. As an actor, do you feel insecure? About what? Anything… like for instance, if your fave director Vishal Bhardwaj takes somebody else in his film or… No, no that’s a very irritating way of looking at things yaar. My insecurities come from whether I am going to be able to do what needs to be done and whether I am making the right choices. I feel insecure about things like have I taken the right decision? Am I working with the right people? Am I doing the right content? I was very insecure when I did Udta Punjab because I’ve never had a sip of alcohol, forget drugs. I don’t even know what it feels to be intoxicated. And I was playing Tommy Singh who was permanently high. So I felt very inadequate to play that character on the

basis of my personal experience as I had no way of drawing a parallel. The only thing I could do is depend on my filmmaker and my instincts as an actor. But yes… those kind of things make me feel insecure. But not where other actors are concerned. I actually feel very inspired when I see good performances. You have to see something special to feel driven. So my insecurities are never to do with other actors. How was it working with Deepika and Ranveer? They’re both great. I think the

cast of the film is fantastic. I don’t know when else a cast like this will come together in a subject like this with characters which have gone down in History with moments that are spectacular and a part of Indian history so to say. And I guess it’s thanks to Sanjay Leela Bhansali who has put everyone together. I don’t know when else a cast like this would come through. Of course Deepika and Ranveer have been working from before and they’ve done great work together. I loved Bajirao Mastani and I loved everybody in the film.

But for me, honestly, I looked at them as actors on set and not stars. I think you need to lose your stardom and come on set because it’s all about being able to give that shot, create that moment, and satisfy Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s vision. So I don’t think there were any stars on set at least I wasn’t. I was just there trying to be Maharawal Ratan Singh and that was my only endeavour and I was acting with Padmavati. So for me though Ranveer and Deepika are friends but on the sets, we were our characters and that’s it! Rumours are rife that you want a separate trailer as you felt too much emphasis hasn’t been given to you… (Laughs) I heard about that! It’s funny… quite funny actually. I’ve been here for 15 years and I’ve never done something like that, why would I do that now? I actually asked people… do all these things actually work? (laughs) The funny thing is ki aaj kal kya ho gaya hai ke do mahine trailer banta hai, promos aate hai… toh matlab pehle se hi log baatein karna shuru kar dete hai. (Laughs) …Picture toh ab bhi baaki hai mere dost. Toh rukhna chaiye na logon ko. I don’t think anybody remembers any of the trailers that they ever saw. What they remember is the film that they saw and the characters they discovered. My last film was Udta Punjab and I remember when I was Tommy Singh in the trailers, he was extremely loud. But after you see the film, you understand the nuances. So I have worked enough to understand that all these things are very stupid and not really important. All I’d like to say, first

see the film! You know what’s happened with Padmavati is that it is so anticipated and people are extremely excited about it so it’s become a talking point. People want to dissect every part of the film and I take that as a compliment and that’s truly great. Shahid, moving away from Padmavati… I’m curious to know how you got out of being typecast as the chocolate hero. I would have died if I was doing

that. (Laughs) I don’t know how people do the same thing for years and years. I can’t do it. I need to evolve, I need to grow, and I need to do different things and that’s what defines me as an actor, so that’s me. What people’s perception of me can be their perception of me and I respect that, but my journey is of self-discovery. I need to discover myself. And I need to challenge myself. I need to do different things and succeed sometimes, fail sometimes. But hell, at the

I’ve been here for 15 years and I’ve never asked for a separate trailer.”

end of the day, the journey should be worth it. I should look back and say, man, I tried everything and this is great. I never thought I would become a star or an actor, have the position to play the central role in movies. But I am here! I have that opportunity, and there are so many brilliant filmmakers who are wanting to tell so many interesting stories which require so many different types of characters, different looks, and different silhouettes. So why the hell would I want to limit myself because people think I am a chocolate boy? Shahid, it’s been 15 years for you, how has the journey been? I actually feel that I was not very good with my choices in the first 10 years of my career. I got lucky with Kaminey and Jab We Met. Vishal sir was very established but he was a parallel filmmaker - he was not considered mainstream. And there was nothing that I had done which would make him feel that I could be Guddu and Charlie of Kaminey. I don’t know what he saw in me. But he came to me and so I think I got lucky there. Honestly, when I started working with Imtiaz Ali. I didn’t know he was going to be who he is today - one of the finest talents we’ve had in the last few years. But we happened to meet and Jab We Met came to me. But seriously, I was doing some pretty trashy work at that time - Jab We Met saved my ass. But I think in the last four to five years, I have kind of started making choices which are more honest and from the heart, and those choices have brought me a certain amount of

appreciation. And Padmavati is again a film like that which I’ve just instinctively done. I hope to continue doing work like that and I hope that whatever I do from the heart, connects with people. As an actor, what’s next? Hollywood?... No yaar. (Laughs) I am very happy doing Indian films, I just feel very honestly, that we’re in a place now as a fraternity, as an industry where it doesn’t matter what language you work in, it

I am actually more busy as a dad than an actor I think.”

doesn’t matter what format you work on. The only thing that is relevant today is the quality of the content that you do. So many times I end up watching television series - whether it is an HBO series or a Netflix series which are excellent so I can’t say today that cinema is better than television. It’s a different medium, they have their pros and cons, they have their positives and their negatives but both are creating phenomenal content. So the language and format is

I think good films should do well, and bad films shouldn’t regardless of whether they are big or small!” irrelevant, the only thing that is relevant is content. You give me a role that makes me say, ‘wow’! I’ll do it! I don’t care about the format. Shahid, as an actor you give 100 per cent but a film like Rangoon didn’t do well at the Box office, does it affect you? Yes, it’s heart-breaking. It makes you angry, sad, and frustrated. It breaks you because you give so much of yourself to something and it gives you nothing back. It’s very difficult to deal with. But that’s life! I am thankful that I got some appreciation out of the film and I got cast by one of my favourite filmmakers Vishal Bhardwaj and that was the only take away from that film. Talking about Rangoon, Shahid you had a love and hate relationship with Kangana. What is your relationship now? I worked with her as an artiste, and I appreciate and admire her as an actor. But beyond that, I really don’t want to say anything. As an actor you’re very busy now. How do you manage to balance your personal and professional life? I am actually more busy as a dad than an actor I think. I am totally and completely into my daughter. And I want to be with her every second I get. But I also happen to act sometimes that’s how I look at my life. Your daughter has become an internet sensation, how do you cope with all this attention? I try and ignore it. When I decided I wanted to become an actor and I finally got my break, I was 21. I had no idea what it comes with at that time. I just

knew that I really want to do this. And I really want to do a good job with it and I hope that I get an opportunity that’s it. But today when I look back, I feel that the children who are born to actors have so much to deal with. Sometimes I feel like I should apologise to my child. But I don’t know what to do. It is what it is, I am guessing every profession comes with its pros and cons. Now she is my daughter so I hope I can be a really good father, and I hope she can learn the right values and beyond that, she is a good person, she will figure it out. What about your wife Mira - she is not from the industry but has she managed to cope with all the craziness that goes into an actor’s life? She seems like fish in water, man. Honestly, I think I had a tougher time adjusting to the industry than she has. She seems to have her head on her shoulders. She seems to have an instinct about people, an inner confidence and therav so to say at a very young age. So I am very proud of the way she has been in the last few years. I think she has done a fabulous job. It is not something that she needs to deal with because it’s not that she chose to be an actor and therefore she must deal with it or she is a part of the job. She got married to an actor and now she has to deal with it. But she has found her own way of dealing with it, which is great. Shahid, big films these days are getting a thumbs down at the Box office. Is this phase scary? No, I think it’s great! I think good films should do well, and bad films shouldn’t regardless of whether they are big or small! I don’t think people should power their way through movies like they used to. There were bad films which did well because of star power and because of a lot other stuff. And I think that spoilt the industry and the ecosystem that we worked in. People

I never thought I would become a star or an actor.” stopped working hard. They just thought it’s all about just creating some hype and some drama, and films will do well. So I am so happy with things happening the way it has. Because what’s good for our movies is that people should focus on content. People should pay writers to develop content. They are the people who are going to give an opportunity to filmmakers and actors to make films which will go down in History. We’ve stopped doing that so I am really happy that they are doing that today. And I am really happy that the films that might be huge but did not have good content are tanking because they deserve that. So what’s next after Padmavati? After Padmavati, I’ve signed one film, and there’s another film I’ll announce soon. The one that’s already announced is with the director of Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, a film that has a social message which talks about electricity. It’s a lighthearted film which takes up an important issue. And there’s something more which I will talk about soon which I am very excited about. Also, now I’d like to do something easy and light to change things up Fabulous! Any message for our STARDUST readers and your fans… Yes, loads of love and I am very thankful and grateful that you guys still are interested in me. And I will try my best to do the best work I can always!

Rendezvous With THE Secret Superstar

Zaira Wasim Making the world go gaga over her spectacular performances in blockbusters like Dangal and Secret Superstar, ZAIRA WASIM in conversation with Riya Lakhmani, gives a glimpse of her tryst with cinema, life and…! Read on…


ressed in a grey floral shirt and orange palazzos paired with blue stilettoes, Zaira Wasim looked super elegant at her birthday party. After the astounding success of Secret Superstar, this newbie celebrated her 17th birthday and the success of her recent release, with the media along with the director of the film Advait Chandan with a lot of pomp and show. After watching her last two movies, I had a perception that she would be somebody bold, outspoken and mature, but to my surprise Zaira Wasim was quite down to earth, witty and very comfortable with her own self. Excerpts Of Our Interview... Was acting something on your agenda always? No! Acting never crossed my mind. If you talk about, how I started acting then I can tell you it started in school. I participated in a play, and my principal figured that this girl can act. And, fortunately the casting director Mukesh Chabra happened to be in Kashmir at that point of time, he was looking for a few Kashmiri actors for his film. He happened to visit our school and my principal gave him my name, and I went to his office. He called me to shoot an ad so I shot two ads and then I got Dangal. I gave an audition but I didn’t know whether I would be selected. I believe a lot in destiny and maybe it was destiny’s call that I would become an actor!

My mom told me, tu waise hai jaise film mein hai.�

How different is Aamir Khan in Dangal and Secret Superstar? There is a lot of difference in both of Aamir sir’s characters, Mahavir Phogat and Shakti Kumar. Both of them are extreme characters. One big difference which we all saw actually was the size poora ulta tha. Dangal mein jaisa dekha tha, he lost so much of weight for Secret Superstar. I was shocked when I saw him in the character of Shakti Kumar, he was hitting on every woman, wearing weird clothes. As an actor, it was a big jump actually. I didn’t know how to react to it, also it was so funny even in the serious scenes when he would say ‘what’. I have given so many retakes, meri hansi band nahi ho rahi thi. His passion is high level, he takes things ten steps higher. Mata ki den hai (Laughs). I would really love to work with Aamir sir and Advait again, it‘s like a dream team and I feel so bad this journey has come to an end. How do you relate to your characters Babita and Insiya ? I don’t relate to any of my characters, I don’t know how

I was shocked when I saw Aamir sir in the character of Shakti Kumar, he was hitting on every woman and wearing weird clothes.” to act actually but Advait says, Isko acting nahi ati, but camera on hote hi iske andar bhi kuch on ho jata hai and she gets into the skin of the character. Yes, that’s why I keep saying these films came to me as an emotional challenge because there was no relevant emotion to connect to and it wasn’t even remotely connected to my personal life. I did not have anything to look up to. But my mom told me, tu waise hai jaise film mein hai. I don’t pick up anything until and unless I am convinced about it, that’s why I don’t sing because I know this is something I am not good at. But, I learned to play the guitar for this film. How is Zaira Wasim as a person? I am a very shy person, I don’t open up with people very easily and that’s why I keep cracking lame jokes to make myself comfortable, I know my jokes are

not funny, in fact they are very annoying but still I crack them. Is she a rebel like her character? No I am not! The last time I fought with my parents was over my brown kitten. I didn’t tell them I was getting her and then I got her home, meri maa mujhe ghar se nikalne wali thi. But I am terrible at explaining myself, I just like to hang around with my cats. In fact I am obsessed with my cat. So what next? Even after two blockbusters, I am not sure if I really want to continue to be an actor. But I believe in destiny. We keep questioning our work. kuch bhi kar lo you will never reach a point where you are satisfied. So I am just going with the flow and now I dwell on the fact that I don’t have to run to things, things are coming to me… Kudos to this spunky girl!

The One Thing That I Dislike About The Industry Is The Lack Of Privacy. From her first film Dabangg to her latest film Noor, SONAKSHI SINHA has shone as bright as the bling details on her ensembles. She claims to be a happy-go-lucky gal which is seen on her social media handles. So what is our asli Sona upto now? Is the vacay mode still on or is there a path-breaking role she’s stepping into in her fancy Fendis? STARDUST brings to you the vivacious side of the Dabbang gal…. Words NAZIFA CHARANIA A lot of actresses are feminists and talk about feminism. What is your take on this? How would you describe a girl of the current gen? Well, today a girl in her 20’s wants everything in life – she wants a great career, a great love life, a great work-life balance, she wants the best figure, and she wants everything else otherwise. What do you do when you come across a character that is extremely challenging to portray? I actually just speak to my director to understand what vision he has in mind for my character. And that is what I do in all my films with all my directors. Because the directors are the visionaries, they have a certain way in which they want to make a film, so I try to understand the character best from them and then portray it to the best of my ability. What is your favourite genre, when it comes to movies?

Rom-coms and action films, these two are my favourite genres. Who do you think is a combination of a star and an actor in the industry? According to me, a combination of a star and an actor in the industry would be Aamir Khan and Deepika Padukone. What is that one thing about the industry that you like, and one thing that you dislike, and you would want to change? The one thing that I really like about the industry is that there is never a dull day that is what I like the most. The one thing that I dislike about the industry is the lack of privacy. How would you describe yourself – an actor, singer, fashionista, girl next door? As an actor, I would call myself mouldable. As a singer, I would say, passionate. As a fashionista, unintentional. As regular girl next door, I would describe myself as happy-go-lucky. You are really fond of singing, if you had to choose between acting and singing, what would you opt for? Why can’t I do both? I would never choose that, then I would do a role where I am required to sing.

The Sexiest Heroine In The Industry Is Deepika Padukone.”

Who do you consider as the sexiest actors in the industry? The sexiest actor in the industry is Hrithik Roshan. And the sexiest heroine in the industry is Deepika Padukone.

It Doesn’t Give Me A Kick When Someone Writes A Role Keeping Me In Mind. From being a theatre artiste to becoming the great Kallu mama of the industry, SAURABH SHUKLA has undoubtedly projected one of the most iconic characters on 70 mm, loved by all generations. ‘Lights, camera, action!’ are the three words that give him a kick! So what’s Kallu mama upto now? Let’s get the reel rollin’….

Words NAZIFA CHARANIA If you weren’t an actor, what profession would you be into? I am already into three professions. I write, direct, act. Apart from the entertainment industry, I would have been a teacher somewhere or I would have been a clerk somewhere. I definitely wouldn’t be a salesperson or a marketing person, I do not have it in me. I am fortunate enough that I never had to go out and look for a job. How do you maintain a balance between your personal and professional life? I am a very boring person. What people call personal life, I don’t think I have that, yes, of course, I have my personal moments, but I am always filled with work. You are an amazing actor - extremely acclaimed – do you think there will be a time when roles will be written with you in mind? They do write roles keeping me in mind, it has already started. People come to me, but it doesn’t give me a kick when someone writes a role keeping me in mind because when they

say it is for Saurabh Shukla, meaning you know Saurabh Shukla the person completely. They will use every facet of mine whether my body, or the way I talk, or the way I think, so there is nothing to explore in that, and it is not satisfying. The industry is partial to beautiful faces, and genuine actors are then overlooked, would you agree to this? People are partial, period. It’s not the industry, it is the people, and we have vested interest always as human beings. So when you say the industry is partial, we are all partial then. How do you keep yourself motivated on a dull day? You have to first think about what makes you happy. And I completely believe that, if you are happy then you will make the world happy and if you are not, then it doesn’t matter how big you are or what you have achieved, you are not going to make the world around you happy.


It wouldn’t be wrong to say that 2017 has been quite his year – four hit movies in a row along with a couple of impactful cameos. From starving for 20-odd days, shaving half his head, putting on several kilos to even beginning to start smoking for a role, he has constantly set his own standards high. With Newton declared as India’s official entry for the Oscars, RAJKUMMAR RAO has all the reasons to be on cloud nine, but looks like he has his feet firm on the ground too as he continues to seek and do honest work. Read on as Khushboo Tiwari converses with the Trapped actor…


omeone’s rightly said that Rajkummar is like a chameleon who changes colours in each film. Time and again, his power packed performances have proved that he is only here to stay. This was my time to have an encounter with this National Award winner who sported a fractured leg but was still busy promoting his upcoming film Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana. Here’s a sneak peak… It’s been seven years in the industry, and you’ve already made a niche for yourself in Bollywood. How does that feel? It’s been a great journey so far. Honestly, I have been very fortunate to be a part of some wonderful films and work with the most talented directors of the country. Of course, there are challenges. When I started in 2008 and shifted to Mumbai, it wasn’t easy for the first two years to get that first film. But I am happy with the kind of work I have been doing. Does this space of yours in Bollywood make you feel safe as an actor considering your selection of offbeat films? I feel very safe as an actor, especially now. I think when I entered the industry, the industry was going through a change, there were directors like Anurag Kashyap, Imtiaz Ali, Hansal Mehta and Vishal Bhardwaj who were pushing the boundaries and making different kinds of films. They had a different way of telling their stories. Especially this year, a lot of content driven films have been successful. So I feel I am in a great space right now to experiment with my work and to experiment with my characters.

Did you always want to be an actor onscreen? Oh yes, since I was a kid I fell in love with cinema and always dreamt of becoming a film actor. So did support for your career choice come easily to you? Everybody supported me. My family was the major support system. Surviving in an expensive city like Mumbai is not an easy thing. But they supported me throughout and my friends boosted my confidence to work hard. You once said, “People don’t see me as a leading guy.” Did you pause for a moment back to analye why? Do you think the reason is because there are stereotypical notions of how the hero should be like? It doesn’t trouble me because everybody has the right to their opinion. They can feel the way they want. I always knew that I wanted to be an actor, play amazing characters onscreen and that’s what I always seek for. Even today, I am not here to be a hero, I am here to play different characters. If my character is the lead guy of the film, well and good, but if he is not, I don’t mind doing it if it’s interesting. You have played a gamut of roles from intense characters to being an unpredictable entertainer in Bareilly Ki Barfi. How do you get such different shades onscreen? Well, it’s always there in the script. You just have to read it carefully. And of course, I am a trained actor, I have done theatre as well. So that’s my job. My training helps in defining my characters,

I am not here to be a hero, I am here to play different characters.”

I can’t really fake it onscreen. If my character is hungry, I have to be hungry.” eventually assisting me in portraying them differently. Because not all the characters are written in the same way. You didn’t eat during the 20-odd days that the shoot lasted and locked yourself into a shell for the movie Trapped. Where did that willpower come from? Well, it’s all because it was needed for the part. In Trapped, there’s a guy who gets stuck in an apartment without food and water, so as an actor, it is my responsibility to go through the same experience. Because I can’t really fake it onscreen. If my character is hungry, I have to be hungry. Incidentally, I am a vegetarian. But for Trapped, I tasted non-veg. Whenever somebody is asked to rate actors... The list usually has the Khans and the rest of it includes Ranbir, Ranveer, Arjun, Varun and Sushant. Does the absence of your name ever upset you, after all that you’ve accomplished? No. I am very happy with the work I am doing. And I don’t compare it with anybody. It’s very pure, it’s an art form, and you can’t compare it with other people. It’s a really big industry, everybody has their own space. Everybody has their own audience. I know I have my own audience so I would rather focus my energy towards my characters than thinking about other things. Do you seek to get paid better now considering your power packed performances? I believe, I have to create that kind of demand for myself where people would wait for my films to come. And for that, I have to keep giving them different characters and wonderful films. People have the confidence in me as an actor so in order to achieve that I have to keep doing lovely films. Is the success of Newton an answer to people who ever had a slightest doubt about you as an actor? My intention to do that film was not because I wanted to prove a point. I do any film because I want to do it, because I like the script and that I’m excited about it. That’s the only reason I say

yes to my films and not to prove a point to anyone. Tell us about your experience of working in Newton. It was a challenging film, especially, the scenario of shooting in the jungles of Chhattisgarh which was not an easy job. But I think that’s what we wanted. We wanted to be very believable, we wanted to look authentic. And that’s the reason we thought of shooting at a real location which happened to be the sensitive areas amidst the jungles of Chhattisgarh. But its all worth it now when I look back. That’s the reason people could believe in what we were trying to create. People believed in Newton, people believed in the theory and liked the film. It’s a really fine example of a good piece of art with some entertainment in it. Looking at your film choices… Is there a specific reason for your inclination towards offbeat films? I don’t put labels when it comes to films. I don’t want to compartmentalize them. For me, a film is a film. Either I like a story or I don’t like it. Its as simple as that. I don’t really do a film thinking that this is a commercial film and that’s why I should do it or an offbeat film that I should go for it. Out of all the films, which one would you categorise as your favourite without being diplomatic?

I won’t be diplomatic. Even though I didn’t really have a big part in Queen, I really liked Queen as a film. You’ve been a part of B-town for quite some time. Do you still get the jitters before the release of a film? Yes, it’s a mixed feeling. You know you feel happy, you feel nervous, but this happens everytime. But I try and keep myself very neutral. I don’t

It’s a really big industry... Everybody has their own audience, I know I have my own.”

expect too much, I don’t expect too low and then I wait and watch what happens. To what extent do you take criticism? I really respect the critics. They have been really supportive throughout and I have immense respect for my critics. It’s somebody’s opinion… somebody who has given two to three hours of their life to watch a film and then write about it, so ofcourse I take them seriously. I try and read as many reviews. Do you recall the worst criticism that you’ve read about yoursel? There have been a couple of them. But nobody has written really harsh things about me as of now, touch wood. There have been times when people wrote why did Raj do this role for a particular film? Now that you’ve set your own benchmark of performances. Do you feel a constant pressure to live up to the audience’s expectations? I can’t work under pressure. And I really don’t want to think about other people’s expectations from me because I already expect things from myself. And I want to keep my sincerity alive. And whatever work I am doing at that given point of time I want to give my 100 per cent, if that lacks, then there’s a problem. So I want to focus on my energy first and maybe then what people expect of me.

Where do you see yourself 5 years down the line? I am not futuristic at all honestly. I try and live in the moment. I didn’t think in 2012, how far I’d reach in 2017. I take things as they come. So let’s see where do I head to. The trailer of Bose Dead or Alive is out and looks quite interesting. How was the experience shooting for it? Why did you choose this web series in particular? It is such a fascinating opportunity for me to play Neta ji onscreen. I wouldn’t have ever imagined myself playing him onscreen but somebody thought of it, somebody imagined me; then I took it as a responsibility. If somebody thinks I can do it, then I would push myself beyond my limits and try and get as successful as possible. And I am very glad that I did it. Bose is the most ambitious character I’ve done till date. 2017 seems to be your year. You have had four releases till now and presumably, Omerta too might release this year. Different genres... different directors... How did things fall into place for you? I don’t really know how things fell in place. But I feel blessed when people offer me all these wonderful scripts. I feel blessed to be a part of films like Newton, Trapped, Bareilly Ki Barfi, or Behen Hogi Teri. These are the films I as an audience would want to watch. So when somebody offers me such films it’s a great feeling. Tell us about your character in the upcoming release Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana. Well, my character’s name is

I have to create that kind of demand for myself where people would wait for my films to come.” Satyendra Mishra. He is your guy next door. Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana is a cute love story. But on the day of the marriage something happens, and they meet again after 5 years as 2 different people altogether. And then, of course, there are twists and turns. How was it working with Kriti? Working with Kriti was really amazing. She is extremely sincere and passionate when it comes to her work. And she is a brilliant co-actor. She would be there helping with my cues. It’s amazing to have a co-actor who’s as driven as you. We tried to make the film scenes probably better than they were written. I think the credit goes to her. Amongst all your characters you played onscreen, which one in particular do you relate to the most? I think I am really close to Newton. Because Newton is somebody who is an idealist and very sincere when it comes to his work. Apart from that you probably haven’t really seen the real Rajkummar in any of my characters. Maybe some traits here and there, but I don’t relate to any character as yet. So could you just give a sneak peek to how Rajkummar is in real life? I don’t know. I am still figuring out the real Rajkummar. (Laughs) I play so many different characters, I probably have some time now to sit back and analyse who the real Rajkummar is?

Three’s S

he’s this super sensuous woman who has barged unapologetically into the narrow confines of Tinselville, emitting an incredible sexy oomph that makes most red-blooded men go panting after her. No wonder, the world is more than just fleetingly interested in her soaring love affairs. So whether it’s her amorous rendezvous with her French beau actor-director Franck Gastambid or her romantic moments with Huma Qureshis’s brother Saqib Saleem, this lady is not just sexy and sensuous, she’s also self-confessedly sexually liberated and makes no bones to hide that fact. And though we think that’s extremely refreshing for a Bollywood heroine - after all most of them still insist they are ‘vestal virgins’, right? - this super sexy woman’s racy love life has even got us confused.

…Yes, we are talking about the gorgeous Richa Chadha who is once again in the news for her multi-hued love life. In fact, some months ago, the rumour grists were on an overdrive about her budding love affair with former cricketer Bishan Singh Bedi’s dashing actor-son Angad Bedi. Supposedly the duo would hang out together at all times looking very into each other. In fact, even when Richa was moving into her new home, Angad was her ‘go-to’ man. Angad too looked, like the ‘man of the house’ as he helped move, pack ‘n’ unpack Richa’s things. But hardly did tales of their passionate interlude paint the lanes of starry land in kaleidoscopic hues, we were hit out of the park for a sixer. There was more breakin’ news on the Richa front. Richa had confessed to all that she was in love with her co-star Ali Fazal from Fukrey. Supposedly, she had hitched her bandwagon to fellow actor Ali Fazal, the charmer from Victoria and Abdul , for more than a year now and the duo had secretly been painting the cobbled lanes of Europe and USA, red with their passion.

In fact, in an interview, Ali had even confessed that Richa and he were in love and it was indeed very “special”.” In fact, in an interview, Ali had even confessed that Richa and he were in love and it was indeed very “special”. Acording to him, “It’s our friendship, which grew over time. It’s so easy for everyone to fit us in a genre and label it love. Love is when we last, so the hope is that we arrive somewhere close to that.” Adding, “I just hope this is the last time I will be disclosing status on my personal life. We don’t want to jeopardise our little friendship. But am happy, I am very happy!” So how did the Fukrey co-stars actually fall in love? Supposedly, it wasn’t on the sets of their film Fukrey that Cupid struck his arrow dipped

...with Ali

...with ex-boyfriend Franck

Ali had allegedly got into an ugly scuffle and Richa got him out of jail in a jiffy.” in love potion. It was actually on the exotic locales of Casablanca where Ali was shooting for a brand. Ali had allegedly got into an ugly scuffle with the local authorities who had absolutely no qualms about putting the good-looking star behind the slammer for ‘rowdy behaviour’. At the end of his tether, Ali made an SOS call to Richa who stormed her way into the police station, and charmed the cops and got her co-star out of jail in a jiffy. From then on supposedly, Ali was so impressed by this voluptuous beauty that he wooed her until she could say ‘no’ no more. And thus began their love affair. Incidentally, Richa too has confirmed that she has been

dating Ali all along. In fact, when the buzz became vociferously loud that Ali had a secret girlfriend in Los Angeles. Richa candidly admitted, “Yes, I’m the girl!” And guess what, according to sources, the duo seems to be so deeply in love with each other that they plan to take their

...with Angad Bedi

love to the next level and get engaged to each other. However, though we confess we do love lovers but we do wonder, what happened to the dapper Angad Bedi’s angle in Richa’s life? Wasn’t he the man in Richa’s life a few months ago? And if she has been dating Ali for a year, where exactly does Angad fit into Richa’s scheme of things? Questions and more questions… Agreed, in Bollywood, relationship statuses are majorly complicated but this un dos tres love triangle’s musical chairs has definitely got us into a tizzy. But no worries, we might as well sit back and wait ‘n’ watch whether our fave ‘all-woman’ Richa Chadha merrily skips handin-hand with the handsome Ali into the sunset or will the cameo king Angad Bedi make a dramatic foray back into Richa’s life once again? Only time will tell!

Sizzling. Super.

Rani Mukerji with the honourable Prime Minister of Mauritius Pravind Kumar Jugnauth.


The grand Mauritius Cinema Week was indeed a plush affair replete with the presence of top stars from Bollywood and Hollywood, interactive Master Classes helmed by top directors, writers and actors, screening of fab films - and to top it, held at beautiful locations in the picturesque island of Mauritius. Sumita Chakraborty travels to this idyllic paradise island for this mega extravaganza, and comes out feeling super ecstatic.

Emmanuelle BĂŠart

Chateau de Labourdonnais Rani at her Master Class



rom the ‘70s cult film Chandi Sona to the current super hit Judwa 2; from Rajesh Khanna’s blockbuster Souten to the Hollywood thriller Serenity starring Mathew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway, the gorgeous paradise island of Mauritius has always been the idyllic location for shooting films for producers and directors. And so in tandem with the celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the independence of Mauritius, the Mauritius Cinema Week was organised with the theme of East Meets West to showcase international films on freedom and independence, and felicitate outstanding actors whose contributions to films have made them stand out amongst the milieu. Stardust too was honoured to be a part of the contingent of the international media which included top newspapers, magazines and social media forums from across the world, and get a bird’s eye view of this fabulous extravaganza. ...So go ahead, read all about

the fabulous Mauritius Cinema Week… Mauritius Ahoy! …From the window of the Air Mauritius plane all poised to land, I could see paradise. Yes, vast expanses of azure blue sparkling waters surrounding an idyllic island filled with greenery, tall mountains and strangely hued earth. “Sheer Paradise”, I thought, as I got off the plane all geared up to attend the grand Mauritius Cinema Week. Day One: The Grand Opening Ceremony The opening ceremony of the East Meets West fest held at the breathtakingly beautiful Chateau de Labourdonnais at Mapu was indeed a starry evening. The Mauritius crème de la crème saw men resplendent in tuxs and dapper black suits, and women in stunning gowns, rub

shoulders with the celebrities from Hollywood, Bollywood, China and European Union film industries. Of course, the evening shone because of the presence of celebs including the beautiful French actor Emmanuelle Béart, Bãhubali director SS Rajamouli and producer Shobhu Yarlagadda, Justin Chadwick, Guy Heeley and British writer-director, the gorgeous Amma Assante. Tada! The Fest Is Officially Open Glam, glitz and glory… And as the beautiful people raised their wine goblets high to raise

Glimpse of the Master Classes

Ile des Deux Cocos

Viveck with hs wife Priyanka

a toast to the Mauritius Cinema Week, the Minister of Public Infrastructure and Land Transport, Nandcoomar Bodha officially kickstarted the East Meets West Festival, by saying, “The Festival has laid the foundation for a new era for the country’s film industry. It also served as the ideal platform for Mauritius to be inspired from the Western and Eastern film industry.” The Minister of Arts and Culture, Prithvirajsing Roopun then lauded the event as a premiere in Mauritius where Mauritians got the chance to experience projection of films in the presence of renowned celebrities. He also underlined that thanks to the Cinema Week, Mauritius had become the crossroads of Hollywood

meeting Bollywood which would influence new trends in film art and give a new impetus to the development of cinema on the island. …And with that the Mauritius Cinema Week was officially open! The event was graced by the presence of 20 high-profile guests from Bollywood, Tollywood, Hollywood, France, the United Kingdom, and South Africa. And at the formal sit-down dinner, I was happy to interact with the Bãhubali director SS Rajamouli and producer Shobhu Yarlagadda in this chilled out venue. But perhaps the most enriching conversation was with Amma Asante, the award winning Black writer-director from the UK, who lamented about how there were very few women directors in the

world today and spoke about what inspired her to make films despite the struggles she went through. Master Classes The opening ceremony was indeed super grand and I was all set to experience the many happenings of the Cinema Week. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the Mauritius Cinema Week were the Master Classes helmed by some of the stalwarts from the global film world. The first Master Class was with the eminent writer of the Hollywood film Serenity, Guy Hibbert who spoke at length on the topic of Write Your Own Story – The Art and Craft of Script Writing. The next Master Class was conducted by the Bãhubali

Amma Asante

Minister Anil Kumarsingh Gayan

director SS Rajamouli and Amma Asante on the topic of Light, Camera, Action – The Magic of Film Directing. Of course, the crowd puller was the Master Class helmed by Bollywood’s finest actor Rani Mukerji titled The Evolution of the Role – Actresses’ roles in modern Indian cinema, Interactive, racy with loads of questions thrown in from the audience whipped up the interest levels of the session. On The Big Screen The Mauritius Cinema Week also showcased some wonderful films, both old and new, from around the world that championed the cause of freedom and independence. Films like Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s Rang De Basanti, Rani Mukerji’s Black, SS Rajamouli’s Bãhubali, Amma Asante’s United Kingdom amongst others were heralded and spoken about highly. Some 24 films were screened at various locations in the island and a capacity of 10,000 seats was offered to the public free of charge. Touring Paradise But if you think the Mauritius

Cinema Week was all work and no play, think again! I was also whisked away to soak in the Mauritius ambience. From checking out the Grand Bassin, Black river, the Land of Chameral colored earth and Chameral waterfalls to being turned into an adventure junkie at the La Vallee Des Kabir Bedi & Parveen Couleurs Nature Park where I tried Asante soak in the wonderful out quad biking, zip lining and island air. Incidentally, all these crossed the iconic Nepalese gorgeous places would make bridge. There was also a wonderful sites for shooting wonderful tour through Port - film producers, please take Louis helmed by the vivacious note! More so as Mauritius is Shakti Callikan of My Moris. also promoting an attractive film But the icing on the cake was rebate scheme and promoting the wonderful Ile des Deux Mauritius as an idyllic film Cocos, an island off the coast production location. of Mauritius where a lavish party was held. I spotted actor The Outstanding Cinema Viveck Oberoi with his beautiful Award Ceremony wife Priyanka, producer The next leg of the Cinema Week Romesh Sharma, French actor was indeed the biggest and Emmanuel Beart and Amma the best. At an exclusive event

Viveck Oberoi

Minister Bodha

Romesh Sharma

Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra Jason Taylor

held at the esteemed Trianon Convention Centre, the island saw one of the biggest events of the Cinema Week. Helmed by the Master of Ceremony, Kabir Bedi, two outstanding awards were given to two outstanding actors of the world - Emmanuelle Beart and Rani Mukerji. Presented by the Prime Minister of Mauritius, Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, the awards were handed over to the two ladies amidst thunderous applause. Rani Mukerji who was visibly moved, averred, “This is the first award I’m receiving before my daughter Adira, and I’m thrilled to receive this along with Emmanuelle Beart who my husband is a big fan of.” Around 2,500 guests attended the Cinema Award Ceremony,

and the event which was followed by the cultural programme had it all – fun, frolic and films. Celebs like Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Suresh Oberoi, Sanjay Khan, SS Rajamouli, Amma Asante and others also graced the event. Incidentally, they were pretty pleased that Stardust too was present at the occasion. Curtains! But like all good things come to an end, the Mauritius Cinema Week too closed at the amazing historical ruins of Balaclava with a brief speech by the honourable minister Bodha, followed by a wonderful dinner and amazing fireworks. I chilled out with

Kabir Bedi and his beautiful wife Parveen. Viveck too very warmly acknowledged me but left before the fireworks commenced. All in all, the Mauritius Cinema Week was indeed an enriching experience. Thank you Mauritius for your warm hospitality and wonderful spirit!

You Are Always Under The Scanner No Matter What You Do Or Say. Her wit and humour are the perfect accessories to her incredible personality. Meet the gorgeous NEHA DHUPIA who after making a strong cameo in Hindi Medium will soon be seen in a comedy drama Tumhari Sulu. Read on as Khushboo Tiwari engages in an unfiltered conversation with the actor... Your audio show #NoFilterNeha has got a great response. What was your thought process when you came up with the idea? We worked to keep it simple. My thought process was to have great conversations with people who are friends of mine and also famous. Everybody thinks that when celebs are together, they are either discussing movies or their private life. This is the typical picture that is painted but there is so much more in conversations that we have and there was definitely a need to bring that out. And I was sure that people all around would like to know these conversations. I have always been a fan of very simple ideas. So #NoFilterNeha is just an extension of the person I am. I have always loved having conversations. And I am glad that an audio show like this has got such traction. It makes me

feel confident of the people I associate myself with and the choices that I have made. What’s the difference in asking the questions than answering them yourself? Oh, I feel so relieved that I get to ask the questions and not answer them. It’s much easier. But I am also walking on a tight rope here. There is a very thin line that I share between trying to make sure that I don’t offend the person who is sitting in front of me by asking them something that they don’t like to be asked and at the same time, trying to get enough information that the consumer finds it funny and interesting. So I have to walk that thin line but more often than not, I manage to do it. Till now we have done two seasons, we have been giving great episodes and at the same time,

in no circumstance have we ever offended anyone who has come on the show. This year you were in Hindi Medium and now Tumhari Sulu is on the cards. Do you think the success of your show has landed you more roles? Well, I don’t know if one thing is related to another when you are going across medium. But when you are doing something good and somebody notices you in a film, there are more chances that you would get something in another film. Likewise if you’re doing well as a host there are more chances that you get something like that. But I don’t know if it helps across the medium. Yes, general public awareness of a recurring name could add a little bit. But the hustle is constant and when you are doing an audio show as a host, you think that ‘yes’ you have to excel in this, when you are doing films you want to do better, when you are doing appearances or endorsements you want to do more. So you have to constantly

I wait for the right projects to come my way.

keep at it. At this day and age to answer your question, if one thing has helped the other, well, if you are not doing at least five different kinds of things you are not doing enough. You see any person out there whose slightly visible - he is doing everything from appearances to associating with causes and charity, doing something as small and effective as panel discussions and as large as films... a lot of us are doing a lot of things and there’s nothing wrong with it. Could you tell us about your character Maria from Tumhari Sulu? Well, I can’t tell much about it right now. But working with Vidya Balan was great. She is awesome. Her episode is live right now on #NoFilterNeha. And what’s real in between season 1 and season 2 is that I ended up doing this film where I play the head of a radio station. So it’s like life has come a full circle. Maria is the head of the radio station where you will see Vidya come and do her bit as well. So I literally play Vidya’s boss and in real life, we got along extremely well. She is undoubtedly the finest human beings I know from the film industry. It is always wonderful to work with great people. So how was it sharing screen space with Irrfan Khan? I am really happy to have shared screen space with Irrfan Khan in Kareeb Kareeb. I have done a cameo where I play one of his love interests. So after Hindi Medium, it’s great to work with him. It’s a very small part but I am glad he called me personally and there’s no way I can say ‘no’ to Irrfan Khan. I have always been a huge fan, so what he 000 STARDUST NOVEMBER 2017

Do you regret doing any of the films? No, not really. But yes, I have made a few mistakes. I am not alone in the kind of choices that I have made. It’s not like there’s somebody guiding me like a godfather or someone even telling me, ‘Hey don’t do this or take this up’. But it’s pretty phenomenal how far I have come. I packed my bags and left Delhi 15 years ago and I told my parents that I will come back in a month, and I have been here for 15 years. So I have not done that badly.

I am not working just to pay my bills.” doesn’t have time to come on #NoFilterNeha, I will still go and work in his film. There have been times where you had 4-5 films a year; however the number has come down to 1-2. So when you overview your career graph, do you think that you’re getting the roles you want? Are you happy at the place you are right now? I am very happy at the place I am right now. I am busier now, then I was doing four films a year which is really weird. Work constantly keeps me busy. I attract myself to jobs that I really enjoy doing. I am working for the right reasons. I am not working just to pay my bills. I am working on things that interest me. I am creating content. I have a production company and I have taken an oath that I will only associate myself with good content, the medium does not matter. I don’t want to involve myself in cinema that I don’t believe in. Therefore,

Well after being the recipient of beauty pageants and playing various characters onscreen, you have come a long way. Do you think that you have attained a position where people consider you an actor before than just a pretty face? I would imagine so because that’s what I have been working towards for all these years. And if people still find me a pretty face, I am very flattered, there’s nothing wrong with that also. When people find me a good actor, I get that more often than not. Sometimes they say I am an underdog because they didn’t expect me doing that ‘kind of performance’ and I have surprised them, so then those are great moments. And when they criticise me I take that criticism very positively and I try and work towards it. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes, I fail. What challenges do you think you face being a Bollywood personality? The challenge is that you are always under the scanner no

matter what you do or say. Also, I don’t see why everybody says that there is a shelf life for actors because I see so many women who have been around longer than I have, who are doing extremely well. So the challenge is to make sure that your shelf life gets extended in the business and that is in nobody’s hand except your own. You have got to constantly keep doing things to take the audience on your side. For instance, a show like Roadies, I went ahead and did it two years in a row because it’s a show run by the youth and the youth follows it. And no matter what amount of cinema I do, I will never be able to get the age group from 18-25 on my side. I am not going to be appearing in a film as a college kid, not going to be doing music videos in hot pants, so how do I engage with the youth? So when I got a show like Roadies, I took it up enthusiastically. So to what extent public opinion and critic reviews bother you? You know when you mess up, you know it already. So it’s not like you aren’t aware of it. So you just need to be prepared for everything. Does it bother me? No. Do I take feedback well? Yes. But as a person I try and analyse things and weigh the pros and cons. So if something goes wrong, I know I had my reasons, so I choose to not back down. Tell us one thing that people don’t know about Neha Dhupia. There’s a lot. When I am hungry, I get angry for no reason at all. My team knows that I am hungry and when I am screaming, they just ask, ‘Should we just get something to eat?’ and then I am fine. So basically, I get ‘hangry’ a lot. So what other projects can people expect you in? I may be signing a couple of TV shows. You will also see me host more in the near future. Moreover, I also will have some movie announcement sooner.

There is a very thin line... trying to make sure that I don’t offend the person who is sitting in front of me.”

I Would Lie If I Say I Don’t Like The Attention Or I Don’t Like My Work To Be Appreciated” Known for his incredible versatility, PAVAN MALHOTRA kickstarted his career with Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s Bagh Bahadur. From the Mamu of Badmash Company to Tiger Memon in Black Friday, he is on a spree to win million of hearts with his stellar performance in every movie. Pavan Malhotra gives a glimpse of his career, films, life and more. Read on…. Words RIYA LAKHMANI While you were growing up, you wanted to join the army. So what inspired you to get into theatre and pursue acting? Actually, when I was growing up, the war was on. I was in school at that time. So, I along with some friends during school used to go to the station aur trains mein army walon ko chai aur biscuit khilate the. We used to call it military then and at that time I thought that I was doing something good. After some time, I realized that to join the army I had to be good at studies. By then, theatre had also happened. So, I feel it’s destiny. Army toh bachpan mein bolte the jayenge but till today, I have utter respect for soldiers. I was destined to be an actor and I am very happy to be one. Yes, theatre did inspire me. When I did my first two shows, I didn’t even know that the National

are recognizing my work, it feels great. If you are a part of a performing art then any actor would like to be recognized and would want to be seen. If somebody tells me I have not watched this movie because DVDs are not available in the market. My immediate reaction would be tell me where I can give you the DVDs. As an actor, I am greedy as I want my work to be seen As an actor I am greedy I want my work to be after all everybody seen after all, everybody wants recognition.” wants recognition. When people School of Drama existed, it just come to me and say they’ve happened in the process. I also watched Salim Langde Pe Mat joined dramatics in college. I Ro, appreciate my work and can never say this is something I then ask my name. The very planned. But I just kept floating fact that people know me by and things kept happening. the character I had portrayed is a huge compliment. I would How did you start your journey? lie if I say that every time I I started with theatre, I had to work, my work is recognized. enact six different characters in a I would lie if I say I don’t like play when I was in school. They the attention or I don’t like then asked me to join their group my work to be appreciated. Of and I used to perform with them. course, everyone likes a pat on I never planned anything, things the back. just happened to me. I came to Mumbai to perform after which I How has your journey been up was offered a job as a production till now? Can you share some assistant for Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro. anecdotes from your days of After that, I actually started struggle? acting in Nukkad and when It has been a roller coaster ride. I went back home, my father At a young age when you decide realized that I wouldn’t come to leave your city and you have back now. a profession of freelancing. You have to find another job to counter Do you think you’ve been duly the first job. I used to think that credited for your work? koi dhang ka role ayega toh Of course, everybody feels that karunga because before that I I should have got more but with was into production. My dad time and the fact that people told me garage khol deta hoon

Bombay mein but I said either I can do this or I can do that. This is my life and my interest is this, good or bad. Whatever I earn `5000, `5,00,000 or `5 crore I will live with that, please don’t worry about me. He got me a house in Bombay. But even after Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro and Nukkad, there have been times when I had financial crises and I couldn’t complain about it. There was a time where I went around asking for work and I didn’t get any, I could never meet or convince people about my projects. Then I stopped asking people for work and then every single job came to me, har ek cheez ka ek time hota hai. God can drop an apple but you have to pick it up and chew it well. God has been really kind. People say I worked well in Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro and Bhaag Milkha Bhaag and that is because somebody showed faith in me. Sometimes when there are pauses, people tend to forget you jo dikhta hai wohi bikta hai. There is always room for improvement in everything you do and I hope I get better and better. You have never restricted yourself to one genre. So what is the mantra behind your versatility? That is an actor’s job! There is a difference between performers and actors, every story is different, the cop of Rustom and the cop of Missing On A Weekend are two different people. The script is different, backgrounds are different, their attitudes of dealing with people are different. Main ghar se soch ke nahi jaata ki is baar aisa police officer banuga. You can make everything realistic. There are all sorts of people in the world. Everything is there in the script and that is something you have to pick things from.

That’s why this profession is so interesting. You have to be on your toes all the time. Aapko behrupiya hona padega and sometimes, it’s not necessary that what is going to be on the script is going to be on screen. Sometimes you imagine the back story or the character. You just keep on thinking about that character, that’s why we keep reading our scripts over and over again.

I was destined to be an actor and I am very happy to be one.”

You have always taken up roles which are content driven. Haven’t you ever wanted to be the lead in commercial cinema? I’ve never felt ki nahi hona chahiye but this is something I was never offered. Many people started saying at one point of time that he doesn’t want to do these kind of films, that’s not true. Even for Pardes, Subhash Ghai called me to play the character of the hero ka dost. I told him I don’t work like this, you have to tell me where I stand in your script and there should be something to do as an actor.

Can you tell us about your role in Judwaa 2? I have not seen the first film. David Dhawan had seen Jab We Met, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag and Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro. He told me that he knew I would improvise, jo shape dena hai character ko de de. After Mubarakan, this was a very different genre. This film was shot in the UK, so this film goes from India to London. I have played the character of a police officer in London. Indeed, it was a great experience and pleasure to work with him. Basically, it’s like all David Dhawan films, I really enjoyed it. Varun and everybody else were really serious about their work. He has his own charm. In the short span of his career, he has already done different types of genres. Although my role wasn’t like the one in Mubarakan.

Which actor has inspired you? There wasn’t any actor who inspired me. I was never a fan of any actor, but I respect a lot of actors. Amjad Khan, Amrish Puri, Mr Bachchan and Om Puri are the actors I have immense respect for. If you talk about young actors Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt and Randeep Hooda are also good at their work. These are some actors who I feel are very good. Especially Amjad Khan, look at the variety of roles he did. He did Gabbar and then he did Wajid Ali Shah, two completely different roles. Waheeda Rehman is such a beautiful lady. I was so happy that I got the opportunity to work with her in Delhi-6.

How was your experience of sharing screen space with Anil Kapoor and Ratna Pathak Shah in Mubarakan? Ratna and I worked together for the first time but I have known her ever since I came to Mumbai because I was the production assistant for Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro. And the first reading was at Naseer’s place so Ratna was also there. It’s the first time I’ve worked with Anil Kapoor. He was very excited

about his character, he used to rehearse his acts many times before shooting. Agar suitcase utha raha hai toh chaar baar utha ke rakhega, taki smoothly ho sara. So I like that excitement he has towards his work. In the end, when Anil talks about the brother and sister relationship, it actually got us all crying. Overall, it was a really good experience What is next in the anvil for you in terms of projects? There are two films in line. One of them in which Mohit Chadha is acting is titled Flight, it’s a different film. The other film is untitled as of now. How do you manage your personal and professional life? After working back to back, one does get some days off from the busy shoot schedules. Some days I watch TV, watch films, meet friends and sometimes, do nothing at all. People call it chilling but for me, I simply look after myself.

“I Was Never Uncomfortable Or Ashamed Of My Heavier Body Size.” Words KHUSHBOO TIWARI Have you ever been a victim of body shaming? Does size really matter? Oh, so many times! And yet I continued to thrive because more than the people who hated or trolled me for my size, I had more people who loved and adored me for the same. I won’t say it didn’t affect me but I was never uncomfortable or ashamed of my heavier body size. In fact, I have thrived and made a career out of it. Who was your first crush? Everyone’s first crush is

during their school days. As a teenager, I had crushes on many actors. But I guess things and feelings change as we grow up! How old were you when you had your first kiss? Ahem Ahem! Let’s keep some details of my life personal. But I promise it was my parents who kissed me first. And the rest, let’s say it was a silly kiss but yet a memorable one. (Winks) What qualities in a man attract you the most? Honesty and integrity. Ah! I love these the most.

What really turns you off? Well, I really get turned off when friends get into a casual conversation about others, take my view on it and then it’s passed on with lots of masala to others and that in turn creates misunderstandings. It’s a turn off for me when my friends do it. I slowly back off from being around them. What’s the most embarrassing thing your parents have caught you doing? Oh God! My parents are the sweetest. Even if there has been an awkward situation my parents have handled it so casually that it made me wonder whether it was embarrassing or not! But my sister used to take my phone and go through my chats many times and then embarrass me with slight hints in public.

If you had a power, who do you most want to switch lives with and why? Honestly, without being modest, NO ONE! We only see everyone’s public life and are in awe of it. But we don’t know what goes on in their lives behind their closed doors. I know my life and honestly, it’s been a joy ride so far! What would you prefer to be? Girl next door, power packed performer or sex icon? That’s a no brainer. Obviously, a power packed performer! My greatest joy is in seeing my family and fans happy. With great amount of love for my craft I would always love to be a power house of talent! Have you ever been humiliated or cheated upon? Humiliated… I can’t recollect of any such harsh moment but cheated… Yes! I don’t mean cheated by any boyfriend though. I have been cheated with false promises many a times. What kind of lover are you? I hate compartmentalizing my emotions, feelings and actions as a lover. But I like to believe that I am a giving, passionate lover! Passionate about travelling with my partner, getting good food cooked and feeding him well. Giving in terms of making sure he’s always well and if there’s anything he needs, getting it for him before he can even plan to purchase it. (Smiles) I like to spoil my partner. Describe the strangest dream you’ve had in your life. I was once stuck in a loop in my dream. I kept landing at the same spot over and over again until I got a headache and woke up.

I am 100% natural and untouched.”

Have you ever hit on a friend of your partner? Gosh! Never! Now that’s a zone one should never enter. I abstain from such situations. In fact, the opposite has happened. I was hit on by a friend’s partner. Definitely awkward! What is your idea about one-night stands? To each his own. When emotions aren’t required, that’s when people have one

night stands. Having said that, I am yet to have one myself. But I ain’t a big fan of it. I find it too hard and difficult to let go so fast and easily with someone I barely know. What was the craziest thing that has happened to you on a date? I have experienced everything from funny, silly, awkward but crazy… nah! What’s the first thing you’d do if you woke up one day and you were the opposite sex? Well, after I am done with my business, I would put the toilet seat down like a gentleman and not leave it up! (Laughs) Have you ever thought of cheating on your partner? Never! Actually, the moment you think of cheating, it displays an emotional and physical disconnect. I feel one should gracefully end the relationship rather than cheat and make it ugly and bitter! Have you ever lied to your partner to avoid an intimate moment, for example, say that you feel sick? I don’t have to lie. I would say it straight to his face. What is the worst rumour or gossip you have heard about yourself? Actually every female actor is mostly somehow linked to her male co-star. So I wouldn’t say that’s the worst. It has just become easy for people to tarnish images. But I read somewhere that I got some “job” done on my body! Let’s just say I am 100% natural and untouched. What’s the meanest thing you’ve ever said to someone?

I have been cheated with false promises many a times.” I have a slight temper issue. I once said to someone that since he has made me unhappy which is why he will also stay unhappy and God will punish him badly. I still feel bad about it! What’s your wildest fantasy? Does this have to be a sexual one? If not, then I have always wanted to live on a cruise ship and dive into the sea every morning, swim with the fish and sail away into the sunset. What is your dream date destination? I wouldn’t call it a dream date destination but I haven’t been to Santorini yet. May be that could be a good spot. What is the boldest thing you’ve done in front of a crowd? Actually, it was very recent. In Julie 2, there’s a love making scene, very intimate, which I had to execute in front of a crew of over a hundred people. It was tough and bold enough for me to have gone ahead with it. Have you ever kissed someone of the same sex? If a peck is considered a kiss, then yes! Have you ever been hit on by someone of the same sex? What happened, how did you react? So many times! It’s common and also very normal. No one has a straight or gay tag written on their forehead or we don’t carry a badge with our sexual preference written on it. People try and approach you. I must say I am always flattered with the

attention they shower but in my sweet, gentle way I let them know I am not interested! When was the last time you faced rejection and how did you handle it? Rejection is part and parcel of an actor’s life. We get some, we lose some. By now I have become a pro at it. I know you meant rejection in love so no, not yet! I give more or get involved deeper with feelings only when I am sure that there’s some kind of reciprocation! One-sided love is dangerous! Which Bollywood celebrity would you like to get marooned with on an island? No comments. Let me not get linked to someone before I have even begun my innings in Bollywood. (Laughs) What is the dumbest thing you’ve said to your partner while being intimate? ‘Baby, I am hungry’. I swear I have said that. Clearly, I prefer food over sex. If you could suddenly become invisible, what are the naughty things you’d like to do? I would go and pull someone’s towel off, shut the shower while he’s bathing, switch off the geyser and then dial his ex’s number from his phone and embarrass him. I’m the naughtiest in such things but all for fun and not to be a sadist! Who do you think has the best bod in the film industry? Salman has an attractive body. And even Hrithik for sure! It’s not just the body, but he is an entire package of looks, charm and style. Though Varun and Tiger also have very good bodies!

A Tribute To The Iconic Prem Nath

It’s Bollywood’s best loved villain PREM NATH’s 25th death anniversary. Known for the extreme dedication and the conviction with which he played his characters, this iconic superstar was loved for his unconventional acting skills. Indeed, super villain Prem Nath ruled the era with his phenomenal films Barsaat, Bobby, Nayi Padosan and many more, attaining milestones and making an indelible mark in B-Town. Monty Prem Nath, the son of this unconventional superstar gives us a dekko at the other side of this super villain. Read On…

Prem Nath Malhotra, the man from Peshawar, who went on to be an iconic villain in B-Town. What can you tell us about this marvellous personality that the world should know and perhaps may not have known. Is there any anecdote about him? My Dad was born on the 21st November, 1926 in Peshawar. My great grandfather was the IG police officer. They then moved to Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh. My father was very passionate about seeing films since his childhood. His pocket money was one paisa, so either he could see films or eat besan ka laddu. He was very fond of both. So there was this incident when he was nine, he went to watch a movie and he didn’t have money in his pocket. So he jumped from the wall of the theatre from the back and sat in the front row in the lower stall, and during the break, the gatekeeper caught him by his ear and said, ‘Ticket

My Dad and uncle Prithvi Raj Kapoor were told to get out of the house at 5 am, work out and come to theatre by bus or tram.”

dikhao’. He said, ‘Ticket nahi hai mere pass’, so he threw him out of the theatre. But even at that age, he told the gatekeeper that watch out, one day I will become big and buy this theatre. Time went on. My father’s cousin was Prithvi Raj Kapoor. So he used to write letters to him from school that even I want to come to Mumbai to join the Film Industry like you. I am very passionate about it, he said. So Prithvi Raj wrote back to him saying, ‘Prem you complete your graduation then you can come’. Once he was done with his education, he expressed this to my grandfather that he wanted to go to Mumbai and join Prithvi Theatre. My grandfather didn’t agree to this and sent him to join the army. He was there for nine months. He wasn’t interested in that. So he wrote to my grandfather that he needed 100 bucks to buy a gun. He was sent 100 rupees and with that money he took a train and came to Mumbai. He ran away from the army and came to join Prithvi Raj Kapoor. He joined Prithvi theatre on a pay of 75 rupees a month. My Dad and uncle Prithvi Raj Kapoor were told to get out of the house at 5:00 am, work out and come to the theatre by bus or tram. They were also told to clean the theatre. The kind of training they received made men out of them.

How do you think cinema has evolved over that period of time, from then to now? This morning I was discussing this with Ashim Samanta, Shakti Samanta’s son. I wrote to him about the old films. He wrote back saying that the old generation had some great directors, music directors and singers. He said, “I wish I could continue the legacy of team work and give the audience entertaining cinema.” Unfortunately, ordinary action films started doing well and social films started flopping. This is the reason my generation made only action films and this has resulted in a collapse of good films. Commitment to cinema is lost which was there earlier. Music is present but melody is missing. The instruments are still there but the feel is missing. Actors have become directors, and directors are there just for name sake and sadly, that passion is missing. My uncle Shammi Kapoor and everybody at that time used to take10 days to shoot just one song and even if you listen to those songs today, they are so lively. What was the relationship Prem Nath ji and Prithvi Raj Kapoor ji shared? My father worshipped Prithvi Raj Kapoor, they were very connected

to each other. Unfortunately they both passed away very early. My father was 66, he passed away on 3rd November and that day happened to be Prithvi papa ji’s birth anniversary. Unhone Guru Dakshina di apne first Guru ko. He made a samadhi of Prithvi Raj kapoor in Jabalpur. They were very close. They used to go on tour to small villages and they had this Bhopu system through which they would announce their shows. Also, they used to promote themselves. This was the dedication that made them achieve so much in such a short time. The films they did together were Sikandar-E-Azam. The song Jahan Dall Pe Sone Ki Chiriya Karti Hai Basera, was from that movie. Rustom –Saraf, which was again a historic classic. Can you give us a glimpse of his stardom. How were his relations with other co-stars? My father and Dilip Kapoor were best friends. My Dad was the highest paid hero then. My father used to charge a lakh of rupees per film. Dilip Kumar used to charge `75,000 per film. Raj Kapoor charged `60,000 per film and Dev Anand would charge `50,000 per film. My Dad was a bachelor then, once he had gone for a film premiere and the women there tore his clothes. All the female actors were interested in getting married to my father. Madhubala and my father did many films together, they were very fond of each other, but due to family values, things didn’t work out. Earlier artistes were committed but now things have become so synthetic. Earlier, everybody used to have

discussions and interactions but now everything has become shallow and is on the surface. Your mother and father were successful actors, were commitments and relationships different that time as compared to today? My father and mother got married because of Yash Johar. He was my father’s secretary. He knew my mother’s side of the family. That’s how he introduced my Mom and Dad to each other, when they were doing Aurat together. He had a bungalow in Mussorie. They met there, without him knowing that they were spending some time together. They got married after Aurat. They started their own film company P.N. Films, and the first film was Shagufa, Prisoners of Golconda and Samundar. Aurat and Changez Khan. They were paired together, and since they were husband wife, so everybody had lost interest in seeing them together. So my father’s price started going low. He couldn’t adjust to that as he was the highest paid actor and suddenly, his price was going down. He wasn’t doing too many films but he was still working during that phase. He was doing one or two films a year but my mother

My father was 66, he passed away on 3rd November and that day happened to be Prithvi papa ji’s birth anniversary.” was doing very well as she got Ghooghat and Taj Mahal. She starred opposite Dev Anand and Dilip Kumar. She was doing all blockbusters. Their relationship was a little affected, as both of them were stars. Then we were born, later my mother retired because she had to take care of us but they were very fond of each other. He always used to say she is my Maharani. Now both of them are together and I hope they are enjoying with each other. How was Prem Nath on screen and off screen ? He bought the Empire theatre in Jabalpur, in my grandfather’s name. My grandfather used to call him Shravan Putra, as he was very dedicated towards his father. It’s been 25 years since he has gone, but I still miss him a lot. He was a great man and a very deep person. Once he went to Mehboob studio for a film’s shooting. My father got out of the studio earlier. Madhubala’s father used to stay at Linking Road. My father stopped near his house. Sadly, Madhubala wasn’t alive anymore and those days, her father wasn’t keeping well too.My father quietly, kept some money under his pillow. Her father asked if he left that by mistake, to which he replied, no, I did this intentionally. Because his daughter and Dad were in love. If she

would have been alive today, he would have been his son-in-law. Also, there is one more incident. It was in the month of December or January. One day, he told the driver that I will get off here. Fetch me tomorrow morning from here. He lived on the road with four people on the footpath. He slept next to a beggar. That beggar shared his quilt with my father because it was so cold. My father asked him koi kaam ata hai? He answered, yes I know driving. So my father got him a taxi to help him make his living. Nobody knows about this side of him. He used to do everything quietly. He used to say that God had given him enough so that he could help others. Apart from the light and sound show, what are the special plans for your tribute to him? I have offered to perform his songs as a tribute to him. To connect with my Dad, I thought I will make a film on his life that would include different anecdotes from different artistes. Jitendra used to say he knew my dad’s dialogues from Baadal very well. When Jitendra came into the industry, he used to meet producers. They used to ask him if he could act and say some dialogues. Then he would recite my dad’s dialogues from Baadal. Dharmendra and Dad did Raja Jani and Lofar together. So he too knows Dad. I have worked on a rough script with all the iconic scenes from his films put together like a story. He was always passionate about his work. So this film is about that. It’s a 90 minute film on how he came to Bombay, how he became an actor and his journey. It has come straight from the heart. NOVEMBER 2017 STARDUST 000

“The Unnecessary Bullshit That Comes With Being A Woman On Top Adds To The Pressure.” --Hard Kaur

From being someone who didn’t even know how to speak English to becoming the Goddess of rap, HARD KAUR is a name that will never fade. Competition is her cup of tea but she downs it like a shot of strong Kamikaze. She is strong, fierce and full of fire. Nazifa Charania presents the #unfiltered side of the hardcore woman…. Did you aspire to get into the music industry since childhood? I was a dancer so I always had interest towards music and entertainment but never had I thought I would become who I am today. After moving to England, I didn’t know what Hip-hop was until the age of 13. I didn’t even know how to speak English, forget rapping. (Laughs). How does it feel to be the Goddess of rap and maintain that title? Do you at times feel any kind of pressure? Wow! It feels great to be called the Goddess of rap. I think I’ve finally made it. Well, maintaining the title is in my blood. I have to and will

always stay Number One. But the unnecessary bullshit that comes with being a woman on top adds to the pressure. But it’s all good, and nothing that I can’t handle.

The competition in the music industry is rising by the hour, does that ever make you feel nervous? Nervous? No. Excited? Yes. I love the rising competition because it makes everyone work harder. The competitiveness is one of the major factors that makes artistes, especially rap artistes more creative and encourage them to do better.

They’ll All Do The Same Shit For A While And Then Switch To Copy Whatever New Is Happening.”

‘Every singer/musician has their time and then comes somebody else’s time.’ Would you agree to this statement? Well, I would say, ‘yes and no’ for that. Yes, because in Bollywood the music usually works by the fashion. So they’ll all do the same shit for a while and then switch to copy whatever new is happening next. And no, because true artistes last forever. If you’re an independent artiste who is creating good music then your fans will always look forward to your next project. And I always say if you want to make God laugh… tell him your plans. (Laughs)

Padukone I think because it won’t just be a romantic number, it’ll also be super sexy. Plus she’s tall, and that’s exactly what I’m not. (Laughs)

From your initial days to now, Hard Kaur is a name that always shines bright in the industry, how does it feel to have made such a strong mark in the industry? You can’t shine bright in the industry because they won’t let you. You have to make yourself shine. The best achievement for me is to stay true to who I am and have the world love and accept me for the same. I feel very blessed for the love I’ve received. I was a ‘nobody’ and today I have become a ‘somebody’ without having any backup from anyone except the strength from my mother.

You usually don’t take up the romantic genre, if you had to sing a romantic number, for which actress would you like to sing? I’ve written romantic songs for others but never for myself. Don’t worry, it’s ready and will be dropping soon, but Hard Kaur style. The actress who would do justice to my romantic number would be Deepika

If you had the opportunity to create your own version of a song which one would it be? If I had such an opportunity then I would create my version

Maintaining the title is in my blood.”

of the soundtrack from the original movie Don with Bachchan ji. What according to you is the best and the worst part about the music industry? The best part about the music industry is no matter what issues people might have with each other but when someone

drops a sick tune, they truly bring the person up and show love towards the artiste. The worst part is that, there still isn’t much support for the artiste rights and issues, like IPRS, and artiste not receiving royalties. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? Firstly, learn to stop helping people who don’t want to help themselves. And secondly, to keep my mouth shut at some places.

Do you follow a regimen to maintain the flexibility of your vocal chords? I don’t follow any regime. I just make sure I avoid things like ice, achaar (pickles) and take time to rest. Actors are now trying their hands in singing, do you feel that it is giving lesser opportunities to professional singers? I think many of the actors are just having fun and its cool but this doesn’t make an actor, a singer, just like me doing one movie does not make me an

actor. I don’t think it affects anyone’s opportunities.

What do you enjoy more – concerts or playback singing? I love both, recordings and being on stage. Recording is an art and it takes precision. Singing live on stage is all about coming alive. Also, the best part is when the crowd is cheering and singing each and every word of the lyrics.

There are very few singers like you who don’t need to rely on films to keep their

name alive, but do you feel there are certain singers who do rely on films for the same? Bollywood has had a big part to play in many artistes’ careers. Bollywood is in our blood and it’s definitely one of the major tools to be a successful vocalist in India but relying on it, isn’t going to do any favours. You must create your own music and be successful as an independent artiste. And if possible then also be a big name in Bollywood. How do you keep yourself motivated on a dull day? I watch a lot of movies and TV series. My latest addiction

The actress who would do justice to my romantic number would be Deepika Padukone.” was “How to get away with murder?” or maybe I’m obsessed with the amazing Viola Davis. If not a singer what would Hard Kaur be? I would’ve been a chef. As equally badass and dangerous as rap. Love it! What is your biggest strength and weakness? My biggest strength is never

backing down when I’m right. I have no weaknesses, I mean I wouldn’t really tell you if I did. Rate these singers from 1 to 4 - Raftaar, Honey Singh, Badshah, Neha Kakkar? 1. Honey Singh 2. Raftaar 3. Badshah 4. Neha Kakkar Who is your inspiration? Many people have inspired me from Busta rhymes to KRS1, George Micheal to Micheal Jackson, Jhansi Ki Rani to Phoolan Devi. But the biggest inspiration is my mother.


STARDUST presents stunning Bollywood and Hollywood divas who inspire and empower each other in the world of fashion, glamour and arc lights‌

Jacqueline Fernandez & Sonam Kapoor strike a pose in their embroidered net Yanina Couture gowns. Same, same?

Priyanka Chopra flaunts her white Danish Label ST suit while Miley Cyrus opts for the same look in Versace

Katrina Kaif & Irina Shayk look stunning in a similar red hot Versace number

Priyanka Chopra & Lily Collins opt for a vivid orange high-low tube gown. Same taste?

Deepika Padukone & Kylie Jenner steal the show in an embroidered Balmain X H & M number Sonam Kapoor & Katy Perry flaunt their red velvet Dolce & Gabanna piece. Twinnin’?

Starry Sashay

Right from Bollywood to Hollywood, the Stardust Runway Stunners flaunt the latest style steppers - blue and rainbow hued suits. Stylish, sassy and supreme, who donned them fabulously well? Get your fash scale in check‌

Katrina Kaif

Salman Khan

Sonakshi Sinha

Kangana Ranaut Rihanna

Priyanka Chopra

Victoria Justice

Chris Evans

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I love: I hate: I’m afraid of: I’m superstitious about: I like it when: My biggest fear: My strength: My weakness: My sex-appeal: My fantasy: My hero: My spice: My favourite bedroom line: My biggest assets: My passion: My greatest necessity: My favourite possession: What tires me most: What touches me most: ‘Stardust’ to me is: My birthday:


rumours & Dear



The promotions of your last film Wah Taj attracted a legal controversy. Did you plan any different promotional strategy for Poster Boys then? — Pranav Nair (Pondicherry) Well, these things are technically not in your control. As a country, we are getting sensitive about every little thing that is happening around us. We tend to react to everything. There is no need to do that honestly. So thanks to social media, there are certain pros and cons. This is probably one of the cons. So whatever we say and do, if there is any element who wants to create controversy, there is nothing you can do about it. Apart from the fact that you can just try and ignore it. For Poster Boys we did a nice marketing strategy which was film-centric and PAN India.

Your tenure as the Chief of the CBFC has been quite a controversial journey. What can the audience now expect from your movie Julie 2 then? — Raina Pareek (Jaipur) They will feel nice because it’s a content-based film and not a skin show. There’s nothing that one can feel disappointed about. I guarantee that even a father-daughter can see Julie 2 together. They will not feel ashamed of watching it based on what the content has been promised and what they are actually seeing.


The industry is glitzy but is also a place where people tend to say negative things about each other. How do you cope with that? — Noori Kaur (Chandigarh) I don’t think that any opinion that someone has of you should affect you to an extent that it changes you as a person. You have to first understand yourself as a person, and be comfortable with that, good, bad, or ugly doesn’t matter.

Dear readers,

Stardust provides you a platform to ask any one question to your favourite celebrity. We will act as your messenger, and make sure that you get a response from your favourite star. Kindly post your questions at @StardustIndia on . You can also email us at


We are in love with the music you make. However, there’s so much on your work front, how do you mantain a balance between your personal and professional lives? — Shanaya Roy (Dehradun)



Sachin- Too much work does take a toll in balancing the personal life. There are times when we have to tell our families that nahi aaunga raat ko ghar pe. But we are lucky that they support us tremendously. Jigar- Well, they not only support us but help us to whatever extent they can. I think we are blessed. And we thank God that we have so much of work!

I have seen all your television serials and movies as well and I truly respect your talent. I was curious to know how you are like when you are on the sets of a film. — Selina Bharwani (Pune) I am an extrovert, I don’t just sit in my vanity van. I keep discussing things with a lot of people, I keep on talking to all the actors. I am a happy person from the inside, and when you’re happy from the inside you can spread happiness.


Producers and directors usually tend to cast known faces, however why do you always choose to work with newcomers in the industry? — Reyaan Khan (Hyderabad) It all depends on the script. When I made Yaariyan, the script required 20-21-yearolds. I couldn’t have cast anybody else because that wouldn’t have been genuine. It took me a year and a half in the casting itself. I had to find those people, train and groom them accordingly.


Advait Chandan’s interview in the Stardust issue, October 2017 was a surprise. I heard the music and came across the trailer of his upcoming lm Secret Superstar but I didn’t know that it

Powerhouse Performer Thank you Stardust for featuring the love of my life Ranveer Singh on the cover of the October issue, 2017. I am in love with his acting skills and macho personality. It’s for the rst time I have come across such a detailed interview of this phenomenal superstar. I really liked this interview especially because it seems like he has poured his heart out. I am eagerly waiting for his upcoming lm Padmavati, more so, after such a long period of time, it will be fun watching him in an altogether new avatar. It will be great watching him sharing screen space with Deepika Padukone once again. I wish him all the best for Padmavati! Rita Singhania, Delhi

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is written and directed by Advait Chandan, and it’s his rst movie. His interview throws light on the passion he has for movies and the zeal with which he has worked on his passion till now. The story of the movie seems quite interesting and promising. Also, I feel this is something I can strongly connect with. I wish him the best for this movie! Rahul Vaidya, Ajmer


She is one of the boldest actors I have ever read about in the Bollywood industry. I am glad

Stardust highlighted the journey of this beautiful actress. Her interview throws light on the other side of industry which many people don’t speak about and it was really interesting to read all about her. I loved her performance in Babumoshai Bandookbaaz and I am really excited to watch

her upcoming movie! Raj Khanna, Kolkata


Thank you Stardust for featuring my favourite actor and the legend Dilip Kumar. It’s always a pleasure to read about this charming legend, who still has the same place in our hearts. I have grown up watching his films, I am his huge fan. I don’t think any other star would have the same impact on me as he had. How I wish I

my favourite duo SachinJigar in the October issue, 2017. Their music is something I have denitely fallen in love with. Especially, Hoor

could see him acting in more films! I wish him good health and hope that he recovers soon! Naza Khan, Bhopal


Music has always made me travel to another world. But when I say music, it’s Sachin-Jigar, whose name comes to my mind. Thank you Stardust for featuring

from Hindi Medium and Meet from Simran. I hope they keep giving us the same beautiful dose of their amazing music, and that too more often! Jigar Sharma, Ahemdabad


It’s always fun to read about the biggest

sanskari person of Bollywood, but for the rst time it was fun and engaging. I have never read such a detailed interview of Pahlaj Nihalani. It was really interesting to read about his opinion on everything

in Bollywood. And his hilarious answers.Thank You Stardust for giving me this lovely dose of laughter! Neelam Shah, Jaipur


Thank You Stardust for featuring my favourite actress Kangana Ranaut in the October issue, 2017. This article is very well written and I liked the headline. I like the way this article has raised so many questions and I really hope her statements haven’t been made only to make big headlines. I wish her the best for her upcoming lms! Vidisha Bhatt, Nagpur


The legendary superstar: Amitabh Bachchan waves at his fans.

Badshah of hearts: King Khan greets the world.

Hello gorgeous: Sara Ali Khan bids goodbye to Mumbai.

Bumblebee: Anushka Sharma graces an event in Mumbai.

On The Go The Bhatt clan: The Bhatt family heads for dinner.

Mr uber fashionable: Arjun Kapoor spotted outside the BBlunt salon in Mumbai.

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Miss Bombshell: Disha Patani smiles prettily.

Love is in the air: Varun Dhawan spotted with his lady love Natasha Dalal.


Confessions Of A Compulsive Flirt



hen she turns on that special smile you bet there’s a man around, for Kimi Katkar wouldn’t waste her energies on a woman. She’s a man’s woman. Totally. Sexy, voluptuous, coquettish and a little wicked. “I can’t be bothered talking to girls,” she airs, “all they can do is bitch, bitch and bitch. Give me the guys any day.” And man does she go for them! She lays it all. All those womanly viles that God equipped the fairer sex with. Given a man she’s live wire. Suddenly vibrant and vivacious, flirting, pouting, darting those warm come-hither looks through her half open, half closed green eyes. “Look here yaar, life’s too short. Who wants to spend it sitting in a corner, waiting for something to happen? That’s not me,” she shrugs. “I cannot be a goody goody girl. I cannot behave this way or that way only because I am supposed to. I cannot pretend. I am what I am. I have always preferred male company. I think men are more interesting. They add that little excitement to your life.” She seeks men relentlessly and makes no excuses. “So I am

KIMI ON MEN, MEN AND MEN a flirt,” she admits defiantly. “So what? Isn’t it only normal for a young single girl to take interest in the opposite sex? And come on it’s my special trait. I am a Sagittarian, a born flirt. In fact, in my case it’s the only thing that keeps me going.” With disdain she shrugs off the repercussions her special Sagittarian trait has had on her reputation. “It takes no time for people to brand a woman chaalu in this industry. It takes no excuse either,” she scorns. “I’ve seen industrywallas start sniggering at the most respectable of actresses as soon as she has turned her back. Who cares anyway? I cannot change myself for anybody or anything and I cannot be something and pose to be something else. I cannot be a hypocrite. If I feel in a certain way about somebody, I cannot hide it. I cannot do things behind closed doors. I am not made that way. “And come on, who cares what a few insignificant people think of me. So what if I am free with people? So what if I am uninhibited with men? What’s wrong with flirting when you

know your limits? Look here, if there is talk about me, it’s all loose talk. People around here have double standards. They have one set of rules for themselves, one set of rules for their girlfriends. And anyway how does it matter? Am I getting any less number of films because of my reputation? It doesn’t really make a difference, does it?” It probably did. To her relationship with Sanjay Dutt and Danny Danzongpa. “They wanted sati savitris is it? They are great saints themselves isn’t it?” She says sarcastically. “Maybe Sunju did drop me because of the rumours that had begun to spread about me then. Maybe he couldn’t take me seriously because of my outgoing disposition. Too bad yaar. If my man cannot trust me, he’s not worth it. I will not change myself for anybody. I cannot hold myself and sit with a straight face on the sets. How can anyone work in such an atmosphere?” Meenakshi Seshadri does. “Well, I mean no offense to her but I could not be like her to save my life. I cannot be a hypocrite,” she shakes her head. “Come on

yaar, we as it is work under such heavy pressures. We are working from morning to night. On top of that the pressure of pretending, of acting out an image. God I would turn into a vegetable if I had to constantly behave myself. “Though in between I did try to change myself,” she smiles sheepishly. “My friends would tell me that I am too open and free with my male co-stars. It pays to keep aloof, they would advise me. So I tried to withdraw myself. Not that I succeeded. In a week’s time I was feeling utterly miserable. So were my co-stars. Specially Govinda with whom I share a damn good rapport. He couldn’t believe the change in me. In fact he told me later how upset he was when I did not speak to him for a few days.” So Kimi Katkar came back to being herself. Joking, flirting and fooling around with her heroes like before. “Most of my work is with the guys. And when you are thrown together so often you are bound to get closer to a few. And if I take a liking for someone it shows on my face. I cannot hide my feelings,” she grins. “And I have to let the person I like know that I like him.” Not every time though. For our self-confessed flirt dreads the thought of Mithun Chakraborty coming to know about the secret crush she has on him for the past so many years. Not only that, she’s so much in awe of him that she loses her tongue in his presence. “I go weak in the knees every time I see him,” she shudders, “he’s too sexy yaar. If only he was not married. I’ve had this crush on him ever since I saw him in Suraksha and I don’t think I even exist for him.” Well, he certainly cannot ignore her after such a loud proclamation, certainly not an obliging gentleman like Mithun. ...with Amitabh Bachchan

I’ve had a crush on Mithun since years… if only he was not married.” But I wonder how Binju (Kimi’s present boyfriend) will react to his girlfriend’s passionate outburst about another man’s sex appeal. “Look here yaar I am only dating Binju,” explains Kimi. “I mean I did go to Goa to see him and all that and I do see him whenever I get the time but I am only getting to know him better. It’s not one of those intense relationships. I don’t want to get into anything serious at the moment. I’ve had three major relationships (Mohnish, Sunju, Danny) all of which failed. I left Mohnish. The other two left me. And somewhere along the way it has left a very bitter taste in my mouth. I’ve been very disillusioned. I don’t want to get into any serious stuff now. And where do I have the time to conduct a full-fledged relationship?” A lot can be done while on work too. Only a few days ago I had seen a letter being passed from Kimi’s make-up room to Raj Babbar’s make-up room (they were shooting together at Filmistan) – a letter wrapped around a red rose. “Oh that,” smiles Kimi selfconsciously “that was not a letter, just a small note. Actually, I have been wanting to do an Art film for a very long time and since my secretary Bali is friendly with Raj, he happened to mention it to him. And as chance would have it Raj ji was planning to make a film (an Art film) himself. But before I signed his film Raj ji wanted me to see an earlier film directed by Dayal Nihalani (who is directing Raj’s Kasam Yodha.) He kept so many trials, but I could never make it for them. Finally I saw the film and liked it. So, in that

chit I had just written how much I had enjoyed the film and how I had really liked Dayal Nihalani’s direction. That’s all. Come on yaar how can I have an affair with him! I had rather have one with Raaj Kumar instead.” Not that I am convinced but I let that pass. At the rate Kim jumps in and out of relationships it would not be surprising if Raj Babbar was history by the time this issue hits the stands. “What do you mean

yaar?” Ms Katkar is offended. “You are talking as if I change boyfriends every week. First of all whether you are convinced or not, let me tell you I am not having an affair with Raj ji. I agree I like older men (the younger ones in this industry are all of their ego trips and I can’t pamper bloated egos) but Babbar is just not my cup of tea,” she asserts. “Even Anil Kapoor once accused me of having an affair with Raj Babbar.

...with Mithun Chakraborty

I’ve had three major relationships (Mohnish, Sunju, Danny) all of which failed.” Only because some time ago when we were all shooting late night at Essel Studio he saw Raj ji having his dinner in my room. Raj ji was hungry and he hadn’t got food from his house. So Raj Kumar Kohli for whom I was shooting (Raj ji was with another unit) told Raj Babbar to have the biryani he had got for us. And since my share was just lying waste (because I was not hungry) Kohli ji asked Raj to go into my room and have the biryani kept for me. Bas, Anil just saw Raj and after that sulked with me for a week. And to add to it all, I, without knowing what rubbish is going on in his mind asked Anil Kapoor how he would react if I had an affair with a married man. Anil blew his top. “It is that man

...with Sanjay Dutt

Raj Babbar you are talking about. It is he you want to have an affair with,” he started screaming. I told him I would have one with him if he left his wife but he was not amused. And after that I left for an outdoor. After I came back it was all over town that I’m having an affair with Raj Babbar. Come on yaar credit me with better taste.” Oh! So it must have been to manao her rootha hua Anil that Kimi had asked me to give the Kapoor. “A big hug and kiss on her behalf” the last time I had bumped into her on my way to Anil’s house. Is Anil Kapoor also in the list? I ask her and add jokingly how I marvelled at the ease with which she managed too many men at the same time. “Baliji is there na to manage my career,” she winks at me. “I can handle the men.” Then she gets serious suddenly “no yaar I’m just joking. I may be a flirt but I too draw a line somewhere. And

it’s not as if I am on a man-hunting spree. I just flirt for the heck of it. For a lark. It’s just that after so many years of restriction I have suddenly got this freedom and I’m just letting my hair down.” I don’t quite understand what Kimi’s trying to say. Her next line confuses me even more. “There is a vast difference between the Kimi Katkar of today and the inhibited insecure girl of yesterday,” she continues. I look at her quizzically. “Till I joined films I had led a very restricted life,” she explains. “In my formative years I was at a boarding school in Panchgani. A Convent. And you know how strict they are. After that I came back and joined college, my mother used to accompany me to the college every day. That is she used to drop me and fetch me. And she was very strict. No late night parties (that she doesn’t like even now), nothing of that sort for me.

As a result I grew up to be an absolute introvert. “Can you believe it?” she smiles. “I couldn’t say hello to anyone without feeling self-conscious. My mother used to get mad at me, she was perpetually pinching and nudging me to go and say hello to people but I found it very difficult. It was only after I started modelling and met Mohnish that I started opening up a little. Though I really got confidence only after Tarzan became a hit and my career started looking up. It is my success in films that has given me the courage to come out of my shell. And I’m really living it up to make up for all those years. What is that they say about too much

...with Monish Bahl

restriction, whatever psychological funda that is. I guess that’s what happened in my case. Maybe convents produce sex symbols. Zeenat Aman too has studied in the same boarding school as me,” she laughs. I notice the pride with which she calls herself a sex-symbol. “Maybe it is good to have a prim and proper image like Hema ji (Malini). Maybe it pays,” she says a little

uncertainly. But only for a moment. Defiance takes over again. “What the hell yaar I think I’m damn good the way I am. At least I am myself.” She’s in her element once again. “The one guy I would love to know is Sunny Deol. I think he’s damn cute yaar,” she says with a twinkle in her eyes then bites her tongue. “God, Dimple Kapadia will claw my eyes out…”

FAST FORWARD She was indeed the oomph girl of the ‘80s. Sexy, svelte and built in the voluptuous lines as sex symbols like Zeenat Aman and Parveen Babi, Kimi Katkar was a picture of a westernised beauty. No wonder, all her roles had her enacting the same character over and over again. Kimi, however, always managed to inject the same spice into her every character despite the repetition. She really could have reached the Number One spot but perhaps, the stars were not aligned in her favour. Her moment of glory came when she was cast opposite the great Amitabh Bachchan, and was in the iconic song, Jumma Chumma De De which is popular even today. However, after an interlude with Bollywood and numerous thwarted love affairs, Kimi got married to photographer Shantanu Sheorey, had a son and then went off to Australia for many years. Today, she’s back in India but instead of the madness of Mumbai, she has settled down in Pune and then picturesque Goa away from the lure of Bollywood. Will she return to Hindi films? Though Kimi says an emphatic ‘no’, one can never say never, right? Words: Sumita Chakraborty


Magna Publishing Co Ltd Managing Director Nari Hira, Sonu Sood and Ali Mostafa Jaya Prada, Mohammad Azharuddin and Amar Singh

Reza Ashtarian, Huma Qureshi and Lakshmi Manchu

Sonu Sood and Prerna Arora

The magnificently grand STARDUST ACHIEVERS AWARD 2017 DUBAI was a starry affair. Magna Publishing Co Ltd Advertising Director Ashok Dhamankar, Sonu Sood, Farah Khan, Rohini Iyer and Jaya Prada

Smriti Mandhana

Sanjana Jon

Nari Hira and Sukhbir Singh

Lawrence Paul, Ashok Dhamankar and Sonu Sood

Farah Khan, Stardust Editor Sumita Chakraborty and Sajid Khan

Dr Jitendra Singh, Lakshmi Manchu and Huma Qureshi

Farah Khan, Dr Nowhera Shaikh and Sajid Khan Pankaj Advani, Aneel Murarka, Bharat Mehta, Arun Gupta and Naveen Sachdeva from Cherish Group

Kanika Kapoor and Neha Dhupia

Kulsum Shadab

Sonu Sood, Brinda Hora and Aman Kukreja

Farah Khan, Sonu Sood, Sumita Chakraborty and Sajid Khan

Kanika Kapoor

Sonu Sood and Ajay Gambhir

Smriti Mandhana and Sukhbir Singh

Neha Dhupia and Vineet Dhanda Smriti Mandhana, Pankaj Advani and the Great Khali

Sonu Sood, Sachin Choudhary and Guru Randhawa

Sanjeev Gupta

Farah Khan, Sumita Chakraborty and Sajid Khan Sumita Chakraborty, Rashed Belhasa and Sajid Khan

Rajiv Dahiya

Jaya Prada

Sachin Joshi

Neha Dhupia and Vineet Dhanda

A performance

Karan Tacker and Neha Dhupia

Reza Ashtarian, Huma Qureshi and Lakshmi Manchu

Sonu Sood, Guru Randhawa and Pankaj Advani

Sonu Sood, Harmeek Singh and Pankaj Advani

Sukhbir Singh

Sanket Bhosale

Jaya Prada, Lawrence Paul and Amar Singh Farah Khan, Neha Dhupia and Jaya Prada

Farah Khan and Irfan Izhar



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SPARKLERS! Paulomi Sanghavi’s stunning ‘Red Carpet Collection’ shone bright with its sparkling diamonds and splendid craftsmanship. The event saw super gorgeous personalities like Madhu Shah, Zeba Kholi, and Isha Koppikar Narang who sparkled in jewels by the designer. The ladies indeed made the launch a glitzy glam one.

Rupa Fabiani

Zeba Kohli Isha Koppikar Narang and Jewellery designer Paulomi Sanghavi Varsha Taurani

Ritika Vardhan

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SUBHASH GHAI ON FM RAINBOW 107.1 FM WITH VIVECK SHETTYY FM Rainbow 107.1FM truly raised the temperature as motivational speaker, singer, and anchor Viveck Shettyy engaged veteran producer and director Subhash Ghai in an engrossing conversation where he shared his opinions on future trends in the Indian film industry.

Viveck Shettyy with Subhash Ghai

super fit Satnam Singh and Danny Hester. The show indeed promoted leading a healthy lifestyle through sports and fitness of the mind, body, and soul.

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in fitness, bodybuilding, and sports. Sumit Gandhi, Chairman, and CEO extended a warm welcome to one and all. Among the sports stars present were the


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‘‘I Was Do Before. Jaing Some Pretty Trashy bW POOR ON e Met Save d M Work STARDOM, PADMAV y Ass.’’ ATI &



REGD. NO.: MCW/72/2015-2017, Posted At : Mumbai Patrika Channel Sorting OfďŹ ce Mumbai-400001. On 1st and 2nd of the every month. RNI. 19153/71 Date of Publication on the 1st of every month

An Extravaganza Par Excellence



pectacular. Sensational. Superb…. Indeed, the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai was simply fabulous. Held in amazing Dubai, the magical land of skyscrapers, sand dunes and luxe living, the venue of this fantastic event was the magnificent St Regis Hotel. …And the who’s who of Dubai’s crème-de-la-crème, the glitterati, socialites and gorgeous stars from Bollywood were all there in full force at this wonderful event. Incidentally, the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai was just not an event replete with glitz ‘n’ glam, it also had a heart. One of the most handsome hunks in Bollywood, Sonu Sood has always been a man of action – whether it’s as an action hero or for supporting charitable causes with a passion. And the charitable cause highlighted that evening was the Hothur Foundation and the impressive work done by them for the cause of acid attack survivors. Indeed, Sonu and his Shakti Sagar Foundation co-partnered Stardust wonderfully well. Hats off to this man with a heart of gold! ...The Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai also awarded some of the most deserving people from various fields ranging from creative, judiciary, business, social to even politics. …Resilient men and women who strived for the betterment of their fields, who took challenges and thought out-of-the-box. …Courageous personalities who despite the odds, bravely shouldered on until they achieved their goals. Indeed, the awardees were a league of extraordinary people, and Stardust salutes them for their wonderful spirit and enterprise. ...The Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai was a magical entertainer that awarded the deserving, had scintillating performances replete with a lot of glitter ‘n’ glamour yet touched the soul with its social cause. No wonder, it was such a fabulous hit!

Sumita Chakraborty Editor, Stardust


What words cannot achieve the contents of this booklet will prove that the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai was a resounding success. It was a spectacular, glamorous evening which supported the cause of the Hothur Foundation which works for the cause of acid victims. We partnered with Shakti Sagar Foundation which has been started by actor Sonu Sood and was amazed at the amount of work he has put into this worthy cause. Sonu Sood has put in his heart and soul into this event and I would like to thank him for his wonderful work. I would also like to thank all the stars who have taken out time from their busy schedules to celebrate with us here in Dubai. Thank you Farah Khan, Sajid Khan, Neha Dhupia, Huma Querishi, Mohammed Azharuddin, the Great Khali and all you beautiful people‌ The Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai has awarded some very talented people from various fields. They have been meticulously picked up by the Stardust team because of their excellent work and incredible efforts. I would like to congratulate each one of them. It was indeed a wonderful evening. I hope this event gets bigger and better and we have the same evening in different countries abroad so that we can spread this message of goodwill. Thank you all.

CONTENTS SONU SOOD Actor With a Heart of Gold ............................ 08 KULSUM SHADAB Woman With a Giving Hand .......................... 12 Conceptualized & Produced by MAGNA PUBLISHING CO LTD Editor SUMITA CHAKRABORTY Senior Correspondent NAZIFA CHARANIA Trainee Correspondent KHUSHBOO TIWARI Trainee RIYA LAKHMANI Intern RADHIKA TANDON Editorial Assistant K. KAMALNATHAN Asst. Art Director GULZAR MALLAYANOR Advertising Director ASHOK DHAMANKAR Asst. General Manager PREETA NAIR Advertising Manager KESHAV NANDIKOL (MUMBAI) Prodution Co-ordinator MANGESH RATHOD Computer Graphics GEORGE WILLINGTON SANJAY ANGCHEKAR JIJI GEORGE SANTOSH JALVI DNYANESH PATIL BHARAT VANJARI

PRERNA ARORA Shaping Vision Through Creativity ............... 16 VINEET DHANDA Advocating It Right! ....................................... 20 NOWHERA SHAIK Giving Wings to Several Dreams ................. 22 RAJIV DAHIYA Spearheading Innovation ............................. 26 AJAY GAMBHIR Advancing Through Technology .................. 28 RASHED BELHASA Youngest Global Achiever ............................ 30 SACHIIN JOSHI Leading the Business World ........................ 32 REZA ASHTARIAN The Charming Visionary ................................. 36 DR JITENDRA SINGH The Focused Educationalist .......................... 38 HARMEEK SINGH The Marketing Master .................................... 40

CONTENTS ZAID KHAN Eyeing the World .......................................... 42 CHERISH GROUP The Hospitality King ...................................... 44 SACHIN CHAUDHARY Building Dreams ............................................ 46 SANJEEV GUPTA Advertising Genius ........................................ 50 IRFAN IZHAR Curator of Quality Content ........................... 54 ROHINI IYER The Media Expert........................................... 56 SANJANA JON Designer Crusader ........................................ 58 P V SINDHU Champion Sportswoman............................... 60 FARAH KHAN Director Supremo .......................................... 61 NEHA DHUPIA Breakthrough Host ....................................... 62 MOHAMMAD AZHARUDDIN The Sporting Legend ..................................... 63 THE GREAT KHALI Pride of World Wrestling ............................... 64

CONTENTS HUMA QURESHI Conquering Bollywood .................................. 65 LAWRENCE PAUL Entrepreneurial Expert ................................. 66 SAJID KHAN Adding the Entertainment Masala ................. 68 KANIKA KAPOOR The Golden Voice .......................................... 69 SMRITI MANDHANA Woman Marking Cricketing Milestones ...................................................... 70 AMAR SINGH Influencing Indian Politics ............................. 71 PANKAJ ADVANI Winning Player .............................................. 72 GURU RANDHAWA Rocking It! ...................................................... 73 ALI F. MOSTAFA Creative Soul ................................................ 74 RED CARPET Sneak Peek of the Event ............................... 75 PICTURE GALLERY Glimpses of the Extravaganza ...................... 81



rit. Gumption & Guts. The impressive Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai raises a toast to some very extraordinary people. ‌Men and women who have challenged the odds, and yet triumphed despite the thorny path they traversed on. Extremely talented people who have honed their skills and have surpassed all expectations. Be it in the field of business, social work, judiciary, entertainment, sports or politics‌ these incredible people have proved their worth over and over again. The prestigious Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai recognises and honours the achievements of such exceptional people who have strived to achieve supremacy in their fields. Kudos to these inspirational men and women who have proved that with hard work and passion, success is always within reach.


An Actor Who Cares

Fit and fine, hot and happening, this handsome hunk is Bollywood’s beloved heartthrob. One of the best actors in Bollywood and down South, SONU SOOD is a man of action. However, it’s not just his Bollywood stardom that he is known for, Sonu Sood constantly contributes his time and effort for the welfare of the society beyond his own charitable foundation Professor Saroj Sood Foundation. He sure is making a wave of change. Read on…


is journey is his strength. Sonu Sood’s sheer dedication and will to make it big in life has awarded him success. His zeal to contribute to the society hasn’t been limited to just entertainment and the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai is one such evidence. Sonu Sood has spearheaded the cause of the acid attack victims through his actions. Citing an inspiration for everybody, he is the man to be trusted… What made you collaborate with a classic brand like STARDUST? Stardust, as we all know has a strong legacy, wide reach across the nation and a special place in my heart. What better brand than Stardust to start such a great cause of lightening up the lives of acid attack survivors and celebrating the success of achievers across the globe in various fields. It makes me feel proud to begin with this as the first cause through this show under my production house Shakti Sagar Productions. How did this noble cause strike your mind? Can you elaborate on the thought process? It all began in August 2017 when Mrs Kulsum Shadab Wahab, CEO of Hothur Foundation shared the experiences of acid attack survivors and every story moved me because of the heroic spirit shown by the survivors. I was impressed with the foundation’s work for specially-abled kids and acid attack survivors. That very moment I thought of giving a global

platform to this great cause and joined hands with Hothur Foundation as a first step to achieve victory over violence. We started with a skin donation camp ‘Saroj’, which was named after my mom Professor Saroj Sood. My mom always believed in giving back to the society and I still remember that apart from her professional teaching she used to teach around 100 kids for free at home. I have grown up where mom and dad have always spread the goodness and love. So as per the teachings and values imbibed by my mom, I am doing my small bit of bringing smiles to the survivor’s faces. Your aim was to bring some colour into the lives of acid attack


“What better brand than Stardust to start such a great cause of lightening up the lives of acid attack survivors and celebrating the success of achievers across the globe in various fields.” survivors, how was the entire journey? I used to get shocked as well as surprised with the way survivors have dealt with their incidents and created a happy life for themselves. I had some amazing moments with the survivors during ‘Saroj’ as well as during the Stardust Achievers Awards. We spoke about films, music and various topics about life. We ate together, danced together and laughed our hearts out. I have only one thing to say, that after closely seeing each survivor journey I am only inspired to live life with more courage and I am learning to live in every moment with all my heart. Salute to their spirit! In an interview, you’ve mentioned that this noble cause is just the beginning and you have miles to go. Would you collaborate with STARDUST for more such noble causes? And what will the next step be? Yes, this is just the beginning and there will be many more to come in the future. It goes without saying that Stardust will be with me on this journey ahead. We are planning to reach out on a bigger level in our next season of the Stardust Achievers Awards. The Stardust Achievers Awards was organized with the aim to raise funds for acid attack survivors. What was your reaction to the event? Did it

live up to your expectations? Were you emotional, happy and satisfied? Absolutely! It was a fabulous event and I am grateful to all my friends and supporters from the industry for coming forward in making this event possible. Special thanks to T-Series and Tips for their great support. I am thankful to each and every one with all my heart. Love to all! Do you have plans of starting your own foundation related to the same or any other charitable event in the future? I already have a charitable trust in my mother’s name which is Professor Saroj Sood Foundation, where needy students in Punjab are sponsored for their studies or we give scholarships to those who want to pursue higher education. I started this foundation after my mother’s demise in 2007. Apart from this, I am happily associated with Hothur Foundation.

act of acid attacks. Let us all get together to free our society from such heart-breaking incidents. Raise your children to be more responsible and peace-loving humans. At the end of the day, what goes around comes around. So let’s make our nation a happier and safer place for current and our future generations. What are that one quality and the best part that you love about STARDUST? To simply put in one word – LEGACY!

You’re a successful actor, thus you have the platform to promote such a noble cause. What advice would you give to our readers to be a part of the same? I would say strongly spread the awareness against this horrible



The Helping

Hand KULSUM SHADAB WAHAB, a compassionate philanthropist in the truest sense, works tirelessly spearheading her family’s charitable venture as CEO of ‘HOTHUR FOUNDATION’. Kulsum lends her helping hand to orphaned children, differently abled adults, uplifts and addresses the economically backward, underprivileged and aids acid attack survivors. Read on about this incredible woman…

How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? Absolutely gratified! You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? The trophy is earned in the hours that no one’s watching… So be stubborn about your goals and flexible with your methods! How did you kick-start your career? Our head of the family, my father–in–law Hothur Abdul Wahab, always taught us to give back to society. He encourages philanthropic work and taught us the importance to serve society. He has been instrumental in establishing the trust and the work it does today. Walking the same path, my husband Hothur Shadab Wahab established a corporate structure into the trust by hiring professionals to manage it efficiently. Our entire work is monitored by professionals who report to me as I represent the trust as the CEO. Can you tell us briefly about your work? Hothur foundation is promoted by Wahab group of companies, a name associated with diversified businesses in Karnataka. Hothur foundation is spearheaded by me towards uplifting and addressing the economically

backward and underprivileged. We do a lot of programmes for the differently abled community. Colours of hope is a programme which has been very successful with differently abled kids where they do art therapy under the supervision of psychiatrists who later address their issues. What began as a small art workshop for eight or nine children gradually grew into an initiative of the trust that works towards empowering disabled children through art therapy. After employing a fulltime psychiatrist and roping in volunteers and helpers, we now work with more than 320 children. These children draw and paint and we convert their work into greeting cards, tea coasters, book marks, calendars

and other such stationary and sell them through various exhibitions held in Bengaluru. The proceeds from these sales go towards the betterment of the charity. SAROJ, a programme of ‘Hothur Foundation’ is an initiative to give voice to acid attack survivors and the problems they face being re-integrated into society. I have been vociferous for the need of skin banking, a concept still new and uncommon in India. But one that needs to be popularized immediately. Skin banking is a process in which the skin is removed from a donor body, tested for suitability as a graft material,

“Charity done collectively, definitely has a bigger impact and can transform the world.” packaged, stored and finally reused as a graft. The process is similar to that of blood banking and comes as a life saver for those suffering from burns or acid attacks, with this the survivor’s confidence can be restored to a large extent! What are the trials and tribulations you faced in your career? Though I am on the giving end,

I faced a lot of challenges yet I prefer not speaking about any as it is always better to use that energy in building something better and positive! What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? l The Global Achievers Award l United Women’s International Congress l Young Womenpreneurs Award l Ritz Woman Of Substance l Ambassador For Breast Cancer Awareness Award l Pink Campaign Award Bangalore

l Recognition for spreading smiles

by the Smile Foundation Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour; can you share your experience being with him? Sonu Sood is the finest and one of the most genuine people we have known and even that is an understatement. Working with him has been amazing and a learning experience for me. We really appreciate the fact that besides his busy schedule, he keeps in touch with the survivors and sends them so much motivation consistently. The world needs more people like Sonu! What are your future plans? I believe we rise by lifting others and greatness is not by giving everyone a cheque. These people need and seek love and time and that’s why charity to me is just being someone’s sunshine when their skies are grey. Charity done collectively, definitely has a bigger impact and can transform the world. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? I am grateful for this amazing journey of giving back. And being told your work is appreciated is one of the best motivation. Every day is a blessing and a surprise for me and most moments are the best. God has been so kind. I love being on the giving end and am eternally thankful for having been given the opportunity to serve others. Not everyone can say they have a life like mine, I work with people less privileged, have a large and supportive family who I adore and gain the blessings and good wishes of everyone who I help. I’m at peace with myself with what I’m doing and have no regrets that I’m not in a corporate job making tons of money. I feel blessed to have been chosen to do what I do.


Woman With A


Ambitious, beautiful, stylish and extremely focused, are few terms that perfectly describes the prolific persona of PRERNA ARORA, Bollywood’s youngest film producer. Holding a strong code of conduct and working on a constant and consistent pace, she has achieved more than one could envisage. Read On…


ollywood, being the second largest film industry hadn’t seen the glory a woman producer could bring until this talented 28 year old stepped in. With faint knowledge but a prominent filmy background, Prerna Arora has reached a milestone in her career which doesn’t come so promptly to many. Prerna is not just the co-owner of KriArj Entertainment which currently is a leading production house but is also the proud producer of blockbuster films like Rustom (2016) and Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (2017). Prerna is truly an inspiration to everybody who wants to make a mark in life. Not only does she want to be remembered as a strong career oriented individual, but also as a good human being who unveiled immense creativity in the industry.

How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? Honestly, it’s a dream come true. Stardust is an institution, it’s something I grew up reading and that the entire country recognizes. It’s a great privilege and honour to receive this award. It inspires me to work harder and hopefully win many more in the future. You being an awardee, obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others. What advice do you have for people who want to follow your footsteps? Thank you very much. I do believe that the most important value to have in any field is a strong code of conduct. It’s important to be disciplined, have vision and work towards it at a constant and consistent

pace. Having willpower and determination can help you achieve your dreams. How did you kick-start your career? I actually met Akshay sir for another film. While that didn’t materialize, Rustom took off and that’s where my journey began. I was a complete outsider, but as they say if you want something enough, the universe comes together to make it happen. I was lucky to be at the right place at the right time and have Akshay sir as my mentor. Can you tell us briefly about your work? As a producer, I want to be part of films that are not just commercially viable but also, have a strong message. My aim is to balance content with commercial value and make films that the entire country will watch. Having said that, I also want to diversify and produce films of all genres with subjects that interest me. What were the trials and tribulations you faced in your career? Not much to be honest. I was

fortunate to work with the best, right at the start of my career. That made the process so organic and disciplined. My very first experience as a producer taught me so much. I worked with a superstar like Akshay Kumar in my very first film and I learnt the ropes from him. I then applied those learnings to my other films and that made the journey easier. What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? This award from Stardust is the most special because it’s my first award and as a producer,

it encourages me to work harder. Another milestone was when Akshay sir won his first National award for Rustom. It was a very happy moment for all of us. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour, can you share your

“As a producer I want to be part of films that are not just commercially viable but also, have a strong message.�

experience being associated with him? I have great respect for Sonu as an actor and met him for the first time in Dubai recently. He is a kind, compassionate and positive person. There is a certain honesty and earnestness that comes across and I genuinely appreciate that. As you know this wonderful endeavour was also to bring awareness about the Hothur Foundation that is doing wonderful work for acid survivors, what do you have to say about this?

It is truly commendable. The Hothur Foundation is doing such great work and shedding light on an issue that is not often spoken about. The statistics were eye opening and I hope to lend my support to their initiatives. How do you balance your work and personal life? Right now, it’s just work. My career is my life at the moment and I am happiest where I am right now because I’m living my dream. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans?

Mr Amitabh Bachchan is a role model to anyone remotely related to Indian cinema and Akshay Kumar who is an institution and an inspiration are the ones I look upto. Also, my father Virendra Arora who has been a strong support and my partner at KriArj Entertainment, Arjun N Kapoor

without whom none of this would be possible. Future aim is to hopefully be one of the best producers in the country. I want people to also remember me as a good person... a producer with a heart and a people’s person... someone who stands for quality, intelligence and goodness.

“This award from Stardust is most special because it’s my first award and as a producer, it encourages me to work harder.”

You have made India proud through your achievements globally, how do you feel about it? It’s just the start. I have a long way to go. It’s a great feeling and it encourages me to work harder and to make India proud.




VINEET DHANDA is an esteemed advocate in the industry, who continues to practise in the Supreme Court of India and is also a member of the Supreme Court Bar Association since 2003. Non-discriminatory and honourable, are few terms that describe his persona to a great extent. Starting his journey as a freelancer, today Vineet is an eminent lawyer and the proud co-founder of Dhanda and Associates. Read on...


ineet has been practising law since 14 years, where he has filed public litigations on the menace of child sex abuse in schools and educational institutions in India, menace of narcotic drugs in India and many more. Initially strenuous, eventually fruitful, Vineet’s journey and presence proves to be an asset to Indian counsel. How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers award in Dubai? It is a great feeling to receive the award. I feel elated and humbled to be receiving this award at such a big platform amongst such big epitomes of success and inspiration. It certainly makes me feel more responsible and committed towards my country and profession. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour; can you share your experience being with him? Sonu Sood sahab is a very positive and encouraging man, and his endeavour of supporting such a pious and inspiring cause that too in remembrance of his respected mother’s name, speaks volume about Sonu Sood ji. I have known him from some time now and I would define his personality with few words like caring, dynamic, inspiring, god fearing, humble and positive. I am positive and happy that our society has people like Sonu Sood ji and Kulsum ji and her husband who are working tirelessly for a noble cause. As a lawyer, I shall always stand with Hothur Foundation for the cause of victims and I have promised free legal help for acid victims anywhere in the country, this is the least I can do as a citizen of this country. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? Legal luminaries like P.P. Rao, Harish Salve, K.K. Venugopal, F.S. Nariman have been my inspiration, they are the Amitabh Bachchan and Dilip Kumar of my profession. My future plan is to work more positively for the society and also, to become fit like Sonu Sood who stands as an epitome of fitness and inspiration.




DR NOWHERA SHAIK is the primary force behind the growth and success of the Heera Group. A dedicated Human Rights Activist who’s devoted to serving her nation and its people, in a very short span Dr Nowhera has earned the admiration and affection from people all across the globe. Read On…


r Nowhera is a sensitive businesswoman who has driven Heera Group’s interests in high-quality food products, investment banking, gold trading, jewellery retail, textiles, building materials, travel and tourism, e-commerce, etc. Imbibing new trends and elements, Dr Nowhera wishes to expand the chain to major Indian cities and also experiment in politics to carry forward social causes.

How did you kick-start your career as a Human Rights Activist? My family is where I began, both in case of business and social service. I was given a very good education. But around me, I could see how people were denied these basic rights, the reasons being many. Children were kept out from schools and colleges for being financially poor or for just being a girl. This really bothered me and I resolved to do my share with those less fortunate. I took my first step towards this by giving classes to six girls which later flourished into a service oriented educational institution offering free education for the needy. From then on, I have been engaging in various social service projects in all parts of the country. The Heera Mobile Clinic providing free service for the poor in the village around Andhra Pradesh is a major one. Can you tell us briefly about your work? My work is a mix of many things. I would like to call myself a socially sensitive businesswoman. In fact, my business itself was a result of my social service projects. I started my first experiment in gold to provide extra revenue for the school at Tirupati. Even at this moment, the growth and success for the Heera Group, serving my nation and it’s people is my

primary concern. I believe it is this spirit behind the group that has made all the companies and institutions under the group a grand success. As the CEO of the company, I am very adamant to keep this spirit alive all through our journey. What are the trials and tribulation you faced in your career? It isn’t a small thing for a woman from my background to achieve what I have achieved. I come from a place where girls are not encouraged to study, where girls are not expected to be entrepreneurs or to establish schools. I had to fight all the conceptions that my society had put upon me as a woman. But that was not all, as an educationalist and a worker in the field of education; I had to resist the forces that made education the most profitable business. And in business, I had to struggle to maintain ethics and values and above all, to keep my business enterprises interestfree. My struggles and fights were and are multi-fold as my field of work are and is only by the assistance of the Almighty, that I could stand stern in this path and achieve what I did.

What recognitions in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? It is a great pleasure for me that my struggles in business and social service haven’t gone unrecognized. As of my educational qualifications, I was awarded a Doctorate in Philosophy from The Open International University, Colombo, Sri Lanka. Personally, I and many of my ventures have received awards and recognitions. I am the Vice President of the India Women Wing – for International Human Rights Association, India. I was awarded the Mumbai Ratan Award 2013 for Outstanding Contribution in the field of Education and Social Service and the Rajiv Gandhi Shiromani Award for Outstanding Individual Achievements and Distinguished Services to the

“My struggles and fights were and are multi-fold as my field of work are and is only by the assistance of the Almighty.” Nation. The Heera Group of Companies has also bagged various awards in national and international stages. It was elected for the Fastest Growing Indian Company Award on the occasion of The 5th International Achievers Summit 2013 and none the less, this year, I got two prestigious awards in the field of Business. Business leadership Icon of the Year from IBPC Dubai - the award was awarded by His Excellency Dr. Thani Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Environment and United Arab

Emirates. And another was from India. I was also awarded as the Most Happening Business Entrepreneur from abroad. I even got the award in the category of Women Entrepreneur of the Year which was given by His Excellency Suhail Mohammad Al Zarooni, chairman Al Zarooni Group. How do you balance your work and personal life? It is not possible to draw clear cut boundaries between my works; I would say works rather than work, and my personal life. My works as an educationalist and a social worker was inspired from my personal life and my business ventures are inspired from my social service projects. I am in fact, a mix of all. However, carrying forward my family life

and my work as CEO of the Heera Group, which is a really time and energy consuming one, and my work in the field of education and social service, which are equally demanding, have definitely been challenging. It is only with the full support of my family and with the Almighty’s help that I could maintain a balance between these. Between all my busy schedules, I still find time to be and enjoy with my family. They are in fact a pleasure and soothing element in between a job so tough and often, taut. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? Since childhood, I have been hearing stories about the Prophet’s wife Khadeeja and the Prophet himself. Khadeeja was a renowned

“We have plans to expand our initiations at e-commerce and to develop our online networks more strong and wide.” businesswoman. I was inspired by these stories, ethics and values. The Prophet taught to share God’s bounties to us and to not monopolize it. This has been a great lesson for me in business and social service that provoked me to run a business enterprise interest-free. Abdul Kalam, the ex-president of India is also a figure that had inspired me. Hailing from a humble background, Kalam could mark himself as an eminent scientist and become the president of such a wonderful nation. Kalam and his

writings in fact taught me to dream. As of my future plans in business, I’m trying to imbibe in newer trends and elements which are beneficial for The Heera Group. We have plans to expand our initiations at e-commerce and to develop our online networks more strong and wide. Also Heera Mart, the supermarket chain under Heera Group of Companies. We also plan to establish ourselves more strongly in the retail scene very soon. Moreover, I will soon commence my experiment in politics. I realize that politics is indispensable to carry forward social causes in a democratic set up like ours. My part in the All India Mahila Empowerment Party, majorly aims at ensuring justice and equal rights for all women.


Industrialist Par Excellence Right from giving technology based business solutions to bringing in innovation; RAJIV DAHIYA has spearheaded Shree Partners. Now he’s all set to expand his business expertise into other industries including banking, finance and retail, and deliver quality experience. Read on about this multi-faceted man...


n insightful businessman known for innovation and business solutions, Rajiv Dahiya is a prominent support to national and global corporations. His dedication has not only helped Shree Partners to achieve great success in healthcare and the travel industry but has also made them the best in every sphere of business and technology for optimum growth. Read on… How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? It feels rewarding and amazing! I am very proud of the work I have done as a technologist, and to have that work acknowledged, is wonderful. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? Follow your dreams. I had always dreamt of being an entrepreneur who believes in building people’s careers. As an entrepreneur, never be selfish, as this creates social and economic imbalance and in today’s era, that is not desirable. What are the trials and tribulations you faced in your career? Every opportunity comes up with hardships and challenges. Thankfully, I have an amazing and strong partner… my wife! She understands the business well and has always encouraged me to travel and meet customers while she manages the rest. The most emotional challenge I faced was to leave India and move to the US. Though that was the right move, but it was not easy. It definitely has allowed the business and the employees to flourish. What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? Professionally, I have been recognized by CIO Review magazine for the work we have done in the technology sector, but the biggest reward for me has been non-work related. I contribute time and money to a local sports club in the state of New Jersey for special children. When these kids thank me, no rewards can surpass that. These kids need our time and support, and anything done for them and their families go a long way. I hope to do the same in India in the future. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour; can you share your experience being with him? While I was at the event, I truly realized how much Sonu is contributing towards creating awareness for the acid attack victims. These efforts are incredible and it is clear how needed,

worthy and impactful they are and will continue to be. He is a true gentleman, and I wish him new highs in life. As you know this wonderful endeavour was also to bring awareness to the Hothur Foundation that is doing wonderful work for the cause of acid survivors, what do you have to say about this? I have a special place for these children in my heart who are affected by these unbelievably tragic incidents. The Hothur Foundation is a great initiative and right step towards providing a better living and life style for affected victims. There are no better people than them in this world, and I wish them the best in life. How do you balance your work and personal life? It is a challenge and I will be honest, that it has been quite a struggle for me to give enough time to my family. I promise them that I will continue to get better and next time when we plan a vacation, it will go as planned and not be cancelled! Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? There are two people in my life who I cannot thank enough - my mom, who is no longer with us, and my wife, Mukti. My mom would always aspire to be the best in any business. She had even produced a regional Haryanvi film Ke Supne ka Jikar. My wife has been such an amazing partner to me. She had her own professional ambitions and goals, but from the time we came together, she has been the true bedrock of our family, doing so much to assure success for me and for Shree Partners. I cannot thank her enough.



Guru Known as a tech geek, AJAY GAMBHIR is a renowned name in the field of technology and marketing. The founder of and Kisan Internet Literacy program, has marked a niche of his own and walked the path of success and glory. Read on……


ick starting his career with engineering, Ajay Gambhir subsequently comprehended his skills in different avenues. This passionate man has played an important role in IEEE and ITU (International Telecommunication Union) and continues to be an active member of the technical and steering committees of International Conferences & Symposiums. His latest project was voted as one of the most innovative proposals in the Innovation and Strategy 2016 of Harvard Business School. With a desire for the best future for India, Ajay Gambhir claims that his aim is to keep the Tiranga flying high, globally! How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? It’s been a great experience! I learnt about receiving this award just a week before the event. I feel honoured that Stardust recognized me for my contribution and found

me capable for this award. I can’t think of a better place than Dubai for this event as it’s centrally located and full of positive vibes. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour; can you share your experience being associated with him? Sonu has a heart of gold and body of steel. He is full of positive energy. You can only get a chance to be around a human being like Sonu, if you are blessed. He has

“I have two dreams... Bringing affordable technology to the Indian farmers and contributing in remote healthcare.” only grown with the amount of good work that he does. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? I am a big fan and follower of Elon Musk and Richard Branson. Elon Musk plays his own game, his own way. He doesn’t wait for the market to get ready but he makes people ready with his vision. Richard Branson is a very inspiring entrepreneur. He sees problems in the world and provides solutions too. I am currently reading his latest book Finding My Virginity and am totally hooked on to it. I have two dreams for the future - bringing affordable technology to the Indian farmers and contributing in remote healthcare. You’ve made India proud with your achievements globally, how do you feel about your success? I appreciate Stardust for recognizing me for this. Having said that, I also want to add that whenever I step out of my house I always remind myself that I am carrying our National Flag. I will keep this flag raised high with every action of mine throughout the day. Satya Nadela and Sundar Pichai have made India proud by leading the biggest tech companies. I want to make sure that I go to the next level and do something bigger to make India proud over and over again.



Young Minds His aim is to touch the skies, and his dreams and hard work are paving a route for the same. RASHED BELHASA is a 15-year-old with not so little dreams. He is one of the biggest social influencers. So no wonder, he bagged the Youngest Influencer across the Globe award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. Read on…


e is definitely not just an ordinary teenager living a monotonous life. Rashed Belhasa stands as a youth icon as he successfully runs his YouTube channel ‘Money Kicks’. Ever since he started out, he has only made his space in the digital industry bigger. Presently, his channel has a phenomenal 864,063 subscribers and that’s not it, Rashed also has a humongous 744k followers on Instagram. No wonder, this teenager is such a big social media celebrity, and has earned the Youngest Influencer across the Globe award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. His most popular YouTube videos are a part of his “Sneaker Talk” series and feature celebrities like Wiz Khalifa, Tyga, The Game, Silento, and Kid Ink. More power to this young man who has set out to shoot the stars of success!



To Rule Business tycoon SACHIIN JOSHI, the Vice Chairman of JMJ group of companies and a renowned Bollywood actor, is a brand by himself. More so, Sachiin has single handedly developed and maintained a mega business empire. Here’s a glimpse of this super successful workaholic’s odyssey - from starting the company Viiking Ventures to owning supremacy like a leader. Read On…


achiin’s tryst with destiny makes him the best in the game. Goa’s popular Kings beer, the iconic formerly Kingfisher villa, Telugu Warriors, the Playboy franchise in India… he’s unstoppable! He has successfully acquired it all! Extraordinarily talented, Sachiin Joshi is indeed and inspiration. How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? Awards only motivate you to keep doing good work. It’s also the acknowledgment of one’s contribution to the industry and the society. Being honoured with the title of Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai has its own responsibilities. I hope I succeed in living up to the honour that has been bestowed on me by continuing to do good work. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? I think every successful person and every individual has his own journey. The mantra is to challenge your own ability. I always encourage the youth to have certain goals and ambitions in life. The positive results of hard work, focus and dedication will follow suite. To all those people who look up to me for inspiration, I’d advise them to work with conviction. But if there is any lesson that I’d like to share with the youth, I’d advise them

to believe that ‘you can’ be the next success story. How did you kick-start your career? As a child, I lived in Pune. FTII and my house had a common wall. My passion for films developed when I use to see stalwarts walking in and out of the academy. Not many are aware, but I’ve acted in multiple short films before I made my official big screen Hindi debut with Azaan. Having a sharp business acumen came naturally because of my family business. While I was juggling between my role as an actor and an entrepreneur, I was also a sports enthusiast. From cricket to football, sports has

“I’m very humbled and honoured to have been felicitated by the Stardust Achievers Award.” been my passion. If it wasn’t for the unfortunate shoulder injury, I would’ve definitely been a cricketer. Can you tell us briefly about your work? I’m one of those blessed ones who get to wear multiple hats. After I started my own company Viiking Ventures, I bought Goa’s iconic Kings Beer, launched Life and Paani mineral water, we’ve recently launched Royal Oak whiskey in Goa and Mumbai. I intend to make a significant expansion in the beverages industry by 2018. Early this year, I acquired the iconic Villa in Goa, formerly known as Kingfisher Villa. I own Telugu Warriors, a team from the Celebrity Cricket League. In the hospitality business, we have Beatle hotel in Mumbai, Planet Hollywood in Goa and Dreams coming up in Delhi. Recently, I’ve acquired the Playboy franchise in India. My NGO Big Brother Foundation works towards the upliftment of the society. The growth in our aviation vertical is steady. We’re also one of the most popular filmmaking companies in the country. It gives me immense pride to announce that with our first big project on its way in Pune, we’re also venturing into real estate. How do you balance your work and personal life? I’m a workaholic. But I do not forget to spend quality time with my family. My children, my wife, and my parents are integral part of my life. We plan our family holidays, dinners and get together as and when our schedule permits.

I need to be updated about my family and their whereabouts. Thankfully, mobile phones have made it a lot easier. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? The first hero in a child’s life is his father. I’ve learnt the nuances of entrepreneurship from my father. There is something to learn from every successful man in the world. There is no end to the process of learning. I take inspiration from everyone I meet. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? I’m very humbled and honoured to have been felicitated by the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. This award adds to my responsibilities. My biggest award is that my country has acknowledged my contribution. Through my various businesses, I want to create employment for the youth. I want to reach out to every Indian and encourage them to live their dreams. I’d like to thank every individual who has been a part of my journey and success.



Dynamo! REZA ASHTARIAN, the Iran based hunk first shot to limelight as a finalist in the Mr India competition in 2004. He’s acted in several movies till now and owns a chain of restaurants in Hyderabad. Read On… about this visionary!


set goal and perseverance made Reza top his game. Straddling to diversify career paths at the same time was a big challenge. But working with big banners in Tollywood to owning some speciality restaurants like Almas, Shahidatarkwan And Biryaniwalla, Reza has proved his worth. And, how! How does it feel winning the Mustafa and Reza Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? Recognition of any sort is wonderful in itself and on a platform of this stature it’s definitely euphoric. I am completely overwhelmed at the moment and enjoying every bit of it. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? Let’s put it like this, it places immense responsibility measuring up to people’s expectations. Though for me threading this part was not a conscious decision, but for it

to have culminated into a success story, I would definitely want to say that one ought to follow their passion with single minded focus and not allow any digression at all. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderfull endeavour, can you share your experience being with him? Sonu Sood is the best thing to have happened to me so far. I don’t have adequate words to describe him as a person. Whatever I say, will never be able to do justice to my association with him. Sonu bhai has been like a big brother, guide and mentor to me. You have made India proud through your acievemnets globally, what do you have to say about this? It gives me goosebumps to think that I now serve as a representative to a big nation of the world. It also fills me up with a great pride and humbles me at the same time that my work has brought respect and recognition to a great nation like India. I thank Stardust for providing me the platform to pay back to my country.




‘A sensitive heart directed towards human welfare’, is a phrase that perfectly defines DR JITENDRA SINGH. Being the chairman of numerous educational institutions, this illustrious man has also contributed immensely in the field of medicine as well as politics. He is undoubtedly an inspiring political leader and philanthropist.


Jitendra Singh maintains his stature as a versatile personality from being a professor, consultant, clinical practitioner, author, columnist to humanitarian. He has contributed over five thousand published articles including his widely read syndicated column the ‘Tales of Travesty’. He is also the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) National Executive member and was the chief spokesperson for the State of Jammu and Kashmir. Read on about the man with a golden heart…

Russia, India, China and South Africa. The summit was held in Durban, South Africa in 2013. After that I again got selected as a delegate with the President Mr Pranab Mukherjee during the President’s three-day State visit in Sweden (2015).

How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? It is a feeling of immense pleasure to be awarded the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. I am grateful to the organisers who found me worthy for such a renowned award. Also, I feel extremely motivated and energetic for my future endeavours.

Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? My biggest inspiration is my father Shri Babu Singh Yadav, better known as Daddu ji. How he started his career and where he stands today is an inspiring story. Moreover, I am very inspired by our former President Late Shri Abdul Kalam Azad ji. I always keep in mind one of his quote, ‘All of us do not have equal talent. But, all of us have an equal opportunity to develop our talents.’ And my wife Dr Anita Ranjan is a huge inspiration for me. She is a lady who can manage almost everything from construction management to administrative decisions without ignoring kids and family, being just a perfect balance maker.

You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? Whatever I have done till now is a result of the blessings of my wellwishers. I would like to advice them to opt for the path of honesty. It may be long and time consuming but it ensures your success. When an honest person succeeds, the winning story is worthy enough to be followed. And yes, one more thing, shortcuts do not exist! What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? I was selected as a delegate with the former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh at the BRICS Summit (2013). It was the fifth annual BRICS summit, an international relations conference attended by the Head of States or heads of government of the five member states Brazil,


Tale of

Success HARMEEK SINGH, the founder and Chief Executive of Plan B group shares his long travel and success story. From nurturing his career on the basic instinct of survival to making his venture into one of UAE’s finest marketing and events company, Harmeek masters at being a catalyst of productivity and innovation.

How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? I am thrilled and humbled by this award, more so, it’s an opportunity to rub shoulders with some of the industry’s big personalities. What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? I have received many awards over the years, but the one I hold the dearest, was awarded to me for my contributions to the heritage sector by The Crown Prince himself. This is a testament to the efforts of my team and a recognition of my love for the UAE, which I consider my second home. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavor; can you share your experience being associated with him? Sonu Sood is a remarkable gentleman who despite his many successes, has always kept his feet on the ground. I found a

sense of familiarity with Sonu and admire his passion and commitment to leverage his position to be the voice of the silenced. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? I have always been inspired by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. As a forward thinker and risk taker, he has played a pivotal role in propelling Dubai in the international scene. I aspire to create my mark within the events sector and hopefully leave behind a legacy that is characterized by innovative thinking that is both impactful and socially responsible. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? As a citizen of India and resident of the UAE for more than 14 years, I feel I owe it to both the countries to lead an example that is defined by moral values and integrity.


Superstar In The Making ZAID KHAN, son of popular politician Zameer Ahmed Khan is worth every ounce of praise. This trailblazer’s desire is to win an Oscar and highlight India’s stature. Following the mantra of hard work and focus, this whiz kid powers on... Read On…


wearing by self-confidence and dedication, Zaid Khan doesn’t fail to impress us. Hailing from a business family, Zaid has won the New Face of the Year award and has also represented his state in the under 19 cricket championship. This multi-talented lad has aimed to dig his feet firmly into the industry and is surely here to stay. How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? Well, it feels great! Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai is very prestigious and winning it inspires you to do better and bestows you with a responsibility of working hard and proving you’re worth it. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow your footsteps? I am still a newbie and need to learn a lot, but yes, one thing I’m sure about is that dedication, hard work and focus are the main keys to success. Also, luck plays an important role but that comes towards the end. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavor; can you share your experience being with him? Words fall short to explain my relationship with Sonu sir. He is like an elder brother, a friend, philosopher and guide. I am really touched and inspired by his contribution for the acid attack survivors. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? I draw my inspiration from my home itself. My dad is my greatest inspiration. His dedication, hard work, his humility, everything inspires me. I feel that even if I put a little of all his qualities in my work, I’ll be close to my goal. And if you are talking about the film industry, then I must state that it is filled with gems that inspire you in different ways, in different aspects of acting. I am inspired by a lot of them but, if you ask me to name a few then it would surely be Sanjay Dutt sir and Shahrukh Khan sir. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? I am just 20 now and have many milestones to cover, but yes, the day I win an Oscar I’ll be in a position to say that I’ve made my country proud, that’s a long way to go... Let’s keep our fingers crossed!


Catering Luxury &


CHERISH GROUP, a popular name in the hospitality industry believes that “Hospitality is an art aesthetic and science supreme”. With the motto of only moving forward, keeping customers the priority, the brand has not only earned profits with flourishing business operations but goodwill too. Read On…


herish Hospitality Services envisions the ‘Satyameva Jayate’ value and reach out to the masses in the form of corporate catering and guest house management. With a dedicated team, a strong vision and hundreds of dreams the Cherish Group strives to offer guests luxury with world class service. With awards like Best Bar and Restaurant of the Year 2015 and India’s Greatest Brands & Leaders 2015-16, the brand’s graph of success has reached heights. What is the vision of your Brand? Cherish is constantly ‘Moving towards tomorrow’. Marking its footprints from PAN India to the Global Arena in UAE, with one vision, we dream a hundred dreams. Cherish has always put customers first. Being the epicenter of inspiration, Cherish is all set to achieve other milestones and has patrons to thank for the umpteen support and encouragement they have provided in the journey. The success of the company has been marked by utmost dedication and innovation that their employees have always strived to achieve, not letting patrons down, and ensuring that their events are as memorable as they get. What is the perception of your brand? Relationships are our returns. We strongly believe in the same and reiterate our unflinching commitment to build trust and relationship through enhanced guest services. Our patrons rely on our well trained and experienced team of professionals to make every celebration turn out the

Bharat Mehta and Naveen Sachdeva

Arun Gupta

Pramod Monga

way they had envisioned it. Cherish Group, thanks all for their love and patronage, and promises to be a brand of contemporary values. The Awards won by your Brand? l Cherish Hospitality was awarded Excellence in Customer Service along with Sufiaana By Cherish and also the Best Bar and Restaurant of the year 2015 (North East region) by the Indian Hospitality Awards, recently held at Holiday Inn Chandigarh on 19th November. l Sufiaana by Cherish was awarded Best Regional Dining Standalone Restaurant of the Year (North region) by the Indian Restaurant Congress at JW Marriot on 25th August 2015. l Mystique Melange by Cherish was awarded as Best Regional Dining Standalone Restaurant of the Year (North region) by the Indian Restaurant Congress at JW Marriot on 29th August 2016. l Awarded as India’s Greatest Brands & Leaders 2015-16 on 3rd September 2016 at the Taj in Mumbai. l Awarded by Elite Nightlife Awards for the Debutant Brand, the Best PDR of the year and the Best Bar with the most unique interiors and ambience.

Pawan Duggal

Naveen Sachdeva


Building An Empire SACHIN CHAUDHARY, fermenting the domain of Aaradhayam Infra Builders Pvt. Ltd. endures steadily in today’s cut throat market scenario. Initially a small scale market firm to becoming a well-established and prominent builders group. Here’s an insight of how an occupation of uncertainties inspired this amazing man to begin a fabulous company. Read on…


dvocating the importance of effective decision making, Sachin Chaudhary believes that one should grab every opportunity to uplift and make India a global brand. His company Aaradhayam functions as builders, developers, constructors and also runs a NGO Aaradhayam Seva Samiti (AAS). Awarded The Young Entrepreneur Award in July 2016, The Excellence Award 2016 from India Voice News Channel, The Young Achievers Award 2017 from the UK government and The Business Excellence Award 2017 by Hope Foundation, this bright man has won hearts and accolades. How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? It feels great! Out of the world, when your efforts get recognition on such a platform like Stardust, it means a lot. It was sudden and unexpected; I would like to thank God for giving me this honour. I dedicate this award to the entire Aaradhayam team, my family and well-wishers. You being an awardee, are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow your footsteps? I would like to convey this to the Indian youth that be confident in decision making. I think this is the most promising factor to start off with anything in the world and remember situations are biggest

inspirations. If you handle them, then business is all about one’s confidence and decision making. For me, I know that there is nothing in this world which is not my cup of tea; you can think of any idea and sell it if you mean it. Each of us should focus on our vision, grab every opportunity from each day and remember we have the responsibility to make this world a better place and make our India a global brand. This is the best time for young people to work on their dreams because presently, we have a huge population, lots of resources and the largest number of young people. Eventually our service sector has high potential of growth.

“This is the best time for young people to work on their dreams because presently, we have a huge population, lots of resources and the largest number of young people.”

How did you kick-start your career as one of the leading builders of the country? Aaradhayam Infra Builders Pvt. Ltd. was started in 2012 after my daughter Aaradhaya was born. I was into the business of network marketing for 8 years but the occupation was full of uncertainties, indeed, I was earning a good fortune from there. But for a new start, you need to leave the things you were working on behind. Suddenly, I

felt the need to do something permanent and traditional and this thought of mine became the inspiration and guiding force to start the company. We started as a small sales and marketing firm with a team of 5-6 people which has become a big team of 490 professionals now. With God’s grace, we are a wellestablished builders group today with the hard work and dedication of our team.

How did you start the Aaradhayam Group? As I told you earlier, I was into the profession of network marketing and a feeling of uncertainty and insecurities rose in my mind. So I began to analyse and observe the people, demand and market. I searched each and every means of business but working with property struck me the most. Earlier, I started as a broker for many builders but buyer’s dissatisfactions, late payments, possessions and builder

“Each of us should focus on our vision, grab every opportunity from each day and remember we have the responsibility to make this world a better place.”

manipulations irritated me. I felt the need of change to real estate from the point of view of a buyer and seller as well. Eventually, this dissatisfaction made me take the decision of starting Aaradhayam. I started it with the name of my daughter Aaradhaya who is my inspiration, so that’s how it came into existence. What were the trials and tribulations you faced in your career?

Well, this journey wasn’t that easy for me, I always struggled with people to prove myself. Co-incidentally, I always opted for a different kind of profession that was totally out of concept of common man. Previously, people doubted my decision making and business. They used to taunt me, allege that I’m a cheater, fraud, bluff master and so on. I was proving my sincere efforts and the legality of the profession but after all people are people, no one was ready to believe me. I was earning more than them but in their opinion, my fortune were illegal, they often whispered, ‘Look, I am telling you he’ll be caught one day’ and finally I left entertaining and satisfying those people. I started doing things that were right according to my reasons. I faced same things in the builders business as a newcomer. Because of being young and a new brand I struggled a lot to prove my skills and potentials. To remove the fear of cheating from the market I started branding my own face. In the beginning, people laughed but slowly they accepted me and appreciated my way of working. It was quite challenging for me but I took it as a part of my learning. What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? The love and encouragement

from my people is the real recognition for me. If you are doing your best with full dedication and hard work then it is sure to get fame in the world. As far as my achievements, I got the Young Entrepreneur Award in July 2016 from Times of India Group, The Excellence Award 2016 from India Voice News Channel, The Young Achievers Award 2017 from the UK government and the Business Excellence Award 2017 by Hope Foundation. These awards boosted me and my team with a new energy. My belief is that even a small recognition of work is a motivating factor in any kind of business and I also got a sense of pride that people are praising and appreciating my way of working. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavor, can you share you experience being associated with him? It’s an honour sharing the moment with him. He is working for such a noble cause, I feel proud being associated with him and I would like to continue this association forever. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, could you share with us about what you’re feeling? This is the special affection of God for me that I’ve achieved so much at a very early age, I have a dream to work for the betterment of life style in India and I am confident that I will contribute largely from my end. Aaradhayam has only one vision “Home for everyone”. I assure everybody from every segment of India that I’ll help them fulfill their dream of having their own house through Aaradhayam.



Excellence SANJEEV GUPTA, MD and founder of Global Advertiser is a renowned name in the OOH business. Extraordinary skills and a unique approach, has aided Sanjeev in amplifying his business. Quality and commitment being top priority, this intellectual and effective leader is key to all his company’s accomplishments. Read On…


wning Asia’s biggest hoarding of a 16000ft canvas size display to holding a record in the Limca Book of Records, the stairway has always bolstered Sanjeev Gupta’s victory.

How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? I feel honoured to receive the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. It’s one of the most prestigious awards and I’m very proud to be bestowed by one. You being an awardee are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others. What advice do you have for people who want to follow your footsteps? Hard work is a key to success. It always pays off sooner or later, but one must constantly strive towards working hard, no matter what obstacles one has to face. Just keep moving, you’ll surely reach somewhere closer to your dream destination. How did you start your career? 20 years ago, I started Global Advertisers. However, the journey began way before. When I was 16, I sold vada pavs and lassi at MM Mithaiwala. Post that, I worked at a shop called Kanchan Sarees where there was an exquisite collection of sarees from all over India. I got an opportunity

and that lead to the birth of Global Advertisers. Global has a monopoly in western and central railways in Mumbai. Wall painting below platforms was started by us, a venture that makes us happy. My heart was filled with pride when I saw Global’s first hoarding at Marine Drive.

Can you tell us briefly about your work? Global Advertisers executes best plans for different products, considering the needs and budget of the client. We offer the best competitive prices, so that client gets 100% benefit. Our hoardings are located in all prime locations all over Mumbai. Global has Asia’s biggest hoarding in the suburbs of Mumbai at Bandra which is of 16000ft canvas size display. Global Advertisers has executed 1.5 Lakhs successful campaigns, one Lakh product launches, 80 thousand in film branding, and 2 Lakhs event sponsorships since 20 years. We have prominent hoardings in all major parts of the city.

Global Advertisers has won about 350 to 500 awards and appreciation letters from clients for an outstanding service provider. Global has also won CNVC Vodafone Ready For The Big League Award, All India Achievers Award, Advertising Agency Of The Year, BBC Award, India Book Of Record, Limca Book Of Record, India’s No.1 brand Award for the last three years consecutively and many more International Awards. BBC has also intended about Global Advertisers in the reports and has specially mentioned about the hoarding and billboard which is located at Bandra. What are the trials and tribulations you faced in your career? There were infinite trials and tribulations that I faced. I was very new to this industry but as time passed, I learnt the dos and the don’ts. I worked on myself and supported my team to rise up with

“My achievement is defined by my client’s satisfaction. I strive towards that mission and so does my team.” me. For me, quality and commitment will always be a top priority. Global has faced many challenges and we are the only agency who are owners of prominent sites and we give full fledge servicer as an agency. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour; can you share your experience with him? It was a wonderful endeavour, and I would like to extend a warm thank you to Sonu Sood for giving me this award. We would love to provide a lifelong service, free of cost to him, if he needs media or any outdoor hoarding in future as a form of gratitude. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? My achievement is defined by my client’s satisfaction. I strive towards that mission and so does my team. Hard work has proven to be the key to success for me and focusing on giving the best has pushed me to limits that are no longer defined. Global always caters and pushes itself more than it can, they make sure to go a step ahead in providing services to its clients.



Triumph IRFAN AZHAR, a multitalented man who has won the Best Documentary Award in the US. From working as a financial controller in Dubai to making his company Visions Corporation excel, Irfan has gone beyond boundaries. Read On…

And when I got a project that I felt strongly about, I joined the Academy Award winning team as an executive producer for the documentary on the UN Peace Keeping Forces, A Journey of a Thousand Miles – Peacekeepers. We have been awarded the Best Documentary Award at the River Run Film Festival in USA. Currently, I am working on another project as producer. I am thankful to Stardust who has encouraged me by giving the Upcoming Filmmaker award. What recognition in terms of milestones and awards have you received so far? Other than Stardust achievers, last year I got the Business Excellence Award in London and the Business Expertise in Packaging Award in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


ighting the odds with no business background or monetary support, Irfan Azhar has managed to reach a phenomenal position. Irfan pushes himself daily to enjoy his journey and achieve success. How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? It’s a great encouragement and a good gesture by Stardust. These awards encourage people to continue doing good work. Such prestigious awards makes one feel that their work has been recognized which gives them a lot of satisfaction. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? I would only like to advice people to keep doing good work whether you are recognized or not. How did you kick-start your career? Films have been my passion since childhood. I wanted to become an actor but wasn’t able to go to Mumbai when I was young. Since I was so adamant to do something in that line, I was always on a look out.

Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavor; can you share your experience being associated with him? Sonu Sood is a brilliant human being. He is not only an excellent actor but now a very good friend as well. He was very concerned about the event and was taking care of everything personally. It’s good to see his association with the Hothur Foundation as having a celebrity with such work, makes a lot of difference! You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? I am trying my best to excel. It is a journey and not a destination, so I have not yet achieved what I want to. Whatever I have done till now is because of my hard work and the wishes of my friends and relatives.



Without A Pause

With an “All I want is everything” attitude, ROHINI IYER, the owner of Raindrop Media talks about her need to achieve her ambitions. Passion and madness are what brings about immense success for this amazing lady. Read On…

How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? I’m really happy to have received this award from Stardust. It feels like life has come about a full circle. I started my career with Stardust and worked with the magazine when I was 18, so to receive this award from them is really special to me. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? I believe in having ambition and passion. Gordon Gecko said, “Greed is good,” and having said that, I would advise people to unapologetically go after what they want and not look at ambition as a dirty word. What are the trials and tribulations you faced in your career? I’m often asked this question but honestly, challenges have never disturbed me. On the contrary, they give me an adrenaline rush. All my clients have been tough and challenging. If not for the challenges, I wouldn’t be working with them. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour; can you share your experience being with him? Apart from working with Sonu for many years, he is also a dear friend. Not only is he one of the tallest people I know but also one with the biggest heart. How do you balance your work and personal life? My work is my time to myself. I never switch off, I’ve made peace with the fact and secretly love it. Who has been your inspiration and what are your future plans? Ironically, numerous books, movies and art have inspired me more than people. There have been different influencers at various stages of my life. I do have a group of close friends, a network of women whom I call my “power puff girls.” Talking about future plans, it’s world domination! You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? Miles more to go… I always say that if your dreams don’t scare you, they are not big enough. I suffer from chronic dissatisfaction and all I want is everything!




SANJANA JON is a fashion designer by profession with a heart of a social activist. Starting her career with creating a jewellery line in New York, Sanjana’s company IG International currently deals in celebrity charity events. The company brings practically almost all former Miss Universe to India for social awareness promotional campaigns. Read On‌


anjana passionately reinforces and maneuvers fashion as a medium to support charity. She also dedicates herself to highlight the culture and essence of incredible India worldwide. Zesty yet commonsensical, she utilizes every opportunity to make the world a better place. How does it feel winning the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai? Blessed! I’m so thankful to God and to Stardust, Nari Hira ji, Ashok ji and the team for such a great honour and privilege. Having worked on social issues globally, I feel somehow making a difference and making this world a better place is important and Stardust is definitely sending the right message globally through the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. You being an awardee, you obviously are a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow in your footsteps? Life is all about caring and sharing and giving. We live such fragile lives, we don’t realize fame, fortune, power, youth, beauty - it’s all temporary in life. All that remains is your karma. I’d rather be the candle that burns twice as bright and half as long. It’s better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you’re not. Through all the trials and tribulations in my life I’m thankful to God for everything he has bestowed on me and I know after the darkest night is the brightest morning. Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour, can you share your experience being with him? Sonu is one of the most incredible human beings and seeing his passion to give back is commendable. My experience with Sonu truly showed me that there are still people with a heart who cares and actually want to make a difference. The fact that he is supporting the acid attack survivors in his late mother’s name and is raising funds and awareness to help them is truly heartwarming. His passion and compassion reflects in all his actions. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, what do you have to say about this? My goal is to make India more proud and be a role model to our youth in making them better human beings. India has always been known for family and culture. I would want to highlight our incredible India and our even more incredible culture worldwide as the best.


The Badminton


Yes, she is the leading Indian Badminton champ worldwide! And that’s why P V SINDHU was honoured the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai for being the First Indian Woman Winning Olympics Silver Medal Women’s Singles Badminton!


itness and finesse are not just adjectives for her, but reality! Leading in her arena with power and passion, P V Sindhu, an Indian professional badminton player, stands as the world no 4 in the BWF World Ranking. Counting her numerous accolades over her short span of playing professionally, would definitely take hours. Her journey to success at an early age is definitely inspiring to millions. Sindhu has also been honoured for her incredible contribution being a recipient of India’s fourth highest civilian honour, the Padma Shri. And of course, she has also won the First Indian Woman Winning Olympics Silver Medal Women’s Singles Badminton award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. Indeed, her hard work has garnered her with all that she deserves.



Par Excellence

She has built her own empire of respect and honour through her immense contribution in the film industry. FARAH KHAN was honoured for the same with the Most Successful Woman Director in Hindi Cinema award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


er movies showcase her creativity, dedication and love for films. They are replete with drama, wit and humour. She is also known for her choreographic work in numerous Bollywood films giving the audience some iconic numbers to groove on. Incredible Farah Khan Kunder has excelled as a Hindi film director and her work speaks volume. She has also been an integral part of several international projects such as Marigold: An Adventure in India, Monsoon Wedding and the Chinese film Perhaps Love. No wonder, she earned the Most Successful Woman Director in Hindi Cinema award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. Farah is a brand in herself and a creative guru for many. More power to this amazing lady!



It Right!

Her celebrity status is the result of her constant hard work and passion. No wonder, NEHA DHUPIA bagged the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai as the Breakthrough Host of the Year for all the right reasons.


he is one of the most talented actors Bollywood has ever come across. This lady is a perfect combination of beauty and brains. Neha Dhupia’s journey from being a model, turning an actor to experimenting being a host, hasn’t been an easy journey, but looks like this woman can bring her A game to everything that she does. While her wit and humour are just the accessories to her incredible personality, she has excelled in doing some serious offbeat roles onscreen. And so it was indeed wonderful when she was honoured as the Breakthrough Host of the Year at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. The woman with no filters, Neha Dhupia is a wonder woman we can’t stop admiring.



Powerhouse Cricketer MOHAMMAD AZHARUDDIN was honoured by the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai with the Most Stylish Wristy Player of Indian Cricket award.


ailing from Hyderabad, this extremely talented man is indeed, cricket’s poster boy! A middle order batsman, he rose to fame during the ‘90s. Captaining the Indian Cricket team, he led the team in 47 test matches and 174 One day Internationals. He has a record of leading Team India to victory in 90 ODIs. And it was indeed great when Azharuddin won the Most Stylish Wristy Player of Indian Cricket award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. Azharuddin has always been appreciated and applauded for his batting skills. He is indeed one of the inspirations for aspiring cricket enthusiasts. Adding another feather to his cap, he also joined politics in 2009 and won the General elections from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh. He has been a champion and continues to stay strong. Our country is proud to have such a talent in the country.


The Wrestling


Winner of the ‘Pride in World Wrestling Champion’ award, THE GREAT KHALI was honoured at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


ock solid, powerful and meticulous, he is truly a gentle giant. Dalip Singh Rana aka The Great Khali is a legend in the World Wrestling Entertainment. No wonder he has won the Pride in World Wrestling Champion at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. He stands as a proud recipient of numerous professional wrestling titles too. This super talented man is also the first Indian professional wrestler to sign a contract with the World Wrestling Entertainment. The Great Khali has been also tagged as the fourth tallest wrestler in the WWE history in 2017. Well, if you thought that his expertise is restricted to the rings, think again! The Great Khali has also appeared in four Hollywood films, two Bollywood films and several television shows. Kudos to this multi-talented man who has emerged as a champion in numerous arenas!



Quintessential Actor

It’s a no brainer that the extremely talented HUMA QURESHI bagged the Breakthrough Performer of the Year award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


uma Qureshi is certainly a name that has strongly emerged in the Hindi film industry. She has been the audience as well as a critic favourite ever she since she appeared in Gangs of Wasseypur. Her commendable performances, killer acting skills and the never say never attitude has only led her to places. Over the years, she has only walked the path of success, be it her choice of roles or the way she carries herself. Huma stands as an icon, millions look up to. And it was indeed well deserved when Huma won the Breakthrough Performer of the Year Award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. She definitely has conquered Bollywood. In a short span of time, Huma Qureshi is one name that filmmakers will always remember and so will the audience!



Through Success LAWRENCE PAUL is a role model whose voyage has led him to utmost prosperity. Losing his father at a very early age, shouldering major responsibilities and now owning a humongous industry, Lawrence surely is the definition of a successful entrepreneur. Read on…


awrence pursues good deeds, works hard and plays harder. This dynamic man went on from a challenged young boy to being a part of the production unit of worldwide blockbuster movie Kung Fu Yoga and becoming the Indian Icon of International Businessman 2017 in New York. He definitely is the man with a vision and his action speaks louder than his words. What is the significance of the Stardust Achievers Award in Dubai to you? Amazing... When recognized by world’s best platforms, it’s a phenomenal moment, great honour, it makes me more responsible as a global citizen. Receiving this award especially in Dubai means a lot to me, where most of my success chapters are being written. You, being an awardee, are obviously a trendsetter and an inspiration to others, what advice do you have for people who want to follow you? Being a role model makes you more responsible in doing good deeds and builds the best attitude. Having a goal is important in life, be motivated and work hard towards your dreams, success will follow. Time doesn’t wait, as a youth, learn to sacrifice, segregate good and bad habits and make wise choices at critical stages.

Sonu Sood has been an integral part of this wonderful endeavour, would you share your experience being with him and how you cope with your stardom? He is an extraordinarily humble celebrity and a tremendously hard working person. He is a very systematic life oriented professional, working with him was a real joy. I thoroughly enjoy each and every moment of his company. What recognition in terms of milestones and awards you have been conferred with so far? Being a part of the production unit of the worldwide blockbuster movie Kung Fu Yoga and working with the superstar Jackie Chan was a wonderful experience. I have also been recognised as the Stardust Indian Icon of International Businessman 2017 in New York, USA. You have made India proud through your achievements globally, would you like to say something about this? I’m extremely proud to be an Indian, also take a cue from NRIs around the globe in various fields. I have been travelling around the globe in extreme conditions to chase my dreams and make India proud.


Directing It

The Housefull Way Cracking up everyone with his wit and humour, and bringing that onscreen through his comic movies, SAJID KHAN is fondly loved. This is exactly why he was the proud recipient of the Entertaining Director of Bollywood award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


ctor, director, and an amazing host, these are probably just a few quality that this versatile man possesses. Sajid Khan is indeed a laughter riot in himself. no wonder the audiences connects with him and his humour. This superstar is truly an inspiration to many. His movies are a part of his personality and definitely give the audience fun times. So it was but obvious when he won the Entertaining Director Of Bollywood award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


The Singing

Baby Doll

Renowned for her melodious voice and beauty, KANIKA KAPOOR earned The Golden Voice of the Year at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


he bold and the beautiful Kanika, with a voice that is mesmerizing has certainly taken over the audience’s music taste to her upbeat super hits. Her songs are so peppy and lively that people can’t stop but hum it all day long. Jugni Ji, Baby Doll and Chittiyan Kallaiyaan are just a few from the playlist, this Punjabi girl is the golden voice behind songs that have gone viral, and how! This leading Bollywood playback singer continues to rule the industry with her power packed performances. So it was to be expected that she would be the proud recipient of The Golden Voice of the Year at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. More power to her!



Woman Cricketer Talented, focussed and playing against all odds, she is a champion of true sorts. SMRITI MANDHANA is the winner of India’s Rising Woman Cricketer award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


itting fours and sixes, the boundaries for this achiever are beyond dreams. Trained since childhood, she knows the game and has time and again proved her calibre. Be it domestic or international grounds, she has been an asset to Team India. She was the only Indian player to be named in the ICC Women’s Team of the Year 2016. A star performer, she has excelled at her game and there’s no way one can stop her now. Taking girl power to newer heights, she is an inspirations to millions. That’s exactly why she deserved winning India’s Rising Woman Cricketer award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai for all the right reasons!




AMAR SINGH proudly represents the welfare of India being an influential and integral part of Indian Politics. The night of the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai witnessed him receiving the award for being the Powerful Face of Indian Politics.


ocially aware, determined and diligent, this man is an epitome of constant hard work for the welfare of the society. Amar Singh continues to be known as a renowned politician who has been associated in politics right from his early days as a student. This illustrious politician won the Powerful Face of Indian Politics award at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. Indeed, Amar Singh has been a part of various movement based organisations and campaigns. His contribution also expanded in the promotion of art, culture, sports, education and the upliftment of downtrodden. He truly is an asset to our country.




An Arjuna Awardee, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna winner and recipient of Padma Shri, the amount of accolades he has in his treasure are numerous. The Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai added one more title to PANKAJ ADVANI’s hat as the Pioneer In World Championship – For Snooker & Billiards!


ankaj Arjan Advani is a pro at English Billiards and Snooker, he has been a champion of champions in English Billiards. He holds the record of having a hattrick of hattricks, holding the World, Asian, and Indian National Championship titles simultaneously, in three different years: 2005, 2008 and 2012. It’s just been five years of his presence in the field and he’s already achieved heights like never before. Advani also stands as the only player to win world titles in both the long and short formats of snooker and both formats of English billiards. Being India’s first world champion in 6-red snooker, Advani has been highly instrumental in winning the first ever World Team Billiards Championship held in Glasgow, Scotland in 2014. This Prince of India has truly proved himself to be the golden boy of Billiards and Snooker. And so it was indeed an honour for Stardust to award him the Pioneer in World Championship – For Snooker & Billiards at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


Punjabi Pop Star He is truly an outstanding singer who has been a heartthrob of millions. That’s exactly why GURU RANDHAWA was honoured with The Sensational Voice of the Year award at the at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


inger and songwriter Guru Randhawa has made it big through his singles. His songs are must haves in the playlist of the Gen-Y. Several collaborations ensured he was a rolling stone who gathered no moss. Randhawa has been topping the music charts, radio stations and TV for tracks like High Rated Gabru, Suit Suit, Yaar Mod Do, Patola and Fashion Etc. He has sung in the IPL opening ceremony and at various other platforms of National and International repute. He recently made his Bollywood singing debut with Hindi Medium with Tenu Suit Suit Karda and we can’t stop but admire him. Well, no wonder he deserved The Sensational Voice of the Year award at the at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.Kudos to this Punjabi rockstar!



Dreams! The supremely talented ALI F. MOSTAFA is a filmmaker par excellence. He bagged the Filmmaker of the Year – UAE at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai.


he supremely talented Ali F. Mostafa is a filmmaker par excellence. Not only has he been called the Best Emirati Filmmaker at the Dubai International Film Festival, this magnificently versatile man has also won the Young Filmmaker of the Year award at the Digital Studio Awards. No wonder, the incredible Ali F. Mostafa, has also been touted as Gulf’s first director of international standing. This creative director’s creativity does not stop just here. He has been an ambassador for some of the biggest and most renowned brands across the globe. And now he has won the Filmmaker of the Year – UAE at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai. Indeed Ali F. Mostafa’s hard work and dedication has made success welcome him with open arms. Here’s hoping he keeps touching the skies forever and after.



Parade Presenting the Red Carpet moments at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai!

Mr Nari Hira

Sanjana Jon Karan Tacker

The Great Khali

Farah Khan

Sonu Sood

Sajid Khan

Neha Dhupia

Huma Qureshi

Lawrance Paul

Pankaj Advani


Len’s Eye A sneak peek of some memorable moments at the Stardust Achievers Award 2017 Dubai!

Sonu Sood, Mohammad Azharuddin and Farah Khan grooves as Kanika Kapoor performs Nari Hira with Sonu Sood

Ajay Dhama and Sonu Sood

Farah Khan, Sonu Sood and Sumita Chakraborty Sonu Sood, Smriti Mandhana and Karan Tacker

View of the audience

Sonu Sood with Guru Randhawa

Glimpes of performances

Sonu Sood with wife Sonali

A glipmse from the event

Sumita Chakraborty and Rashed Belhasa

Karan Tacker and Neha Dhupia

Sonu Sood, Brinda Hora and Aman Kukreja

Sajid Khan, Jaya Prada and Huma Qureshi Mesmerising Performance

Sukhbir Singh

Lawrence Paul and Sonu Sood

Kanika Kapoor and Neha Dhupia

Kanika Kapoor

Jaya Prada, Mohammad Azharuddin and Amar Singh

Nari Hira and Sukhbir Singh

Kulsum Shadab

Reza Ashtarian, Huma Qureshi and Lakshmi Manchu

Karan Tacker, Mohammad Azharuddin, Sonu Sood, Farah Khan and the Great Khali

Dr Sanket Bhosale with Prerna Arora

Karan Tacker and Vineet Dhanda