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PUNE, SEPTEMBER 19, 2015 |

Wandering solo Leave your grumpy old self behind and give travelling by yourself a shot to discover a new you

She is Shankar-EhsaanLoy’s newest find

Have you dined here yet?


The gown collector!





She is Shankar-EhsaanLoy’s newest find

Carnatic music has always been Rasika Shekar’s first love By Salonee Mistry @Sal0412


nspired by her grandmother, mother and aunt, Rasika Shekar has undoubtedly made her mark in the world of music. A perfect blend of contemporary and traditional music, this passionate flautist and singer is modest and has absolutely no airs about her accomplishments. In a heartfelt conversation with TGS Rasika speaks of her love for Carnatic music and her journey into Bollywood. An avid tennis player, a big fan of catching forty winks, and always the family clown, Rasika studied to become a chemical engineer before she realised her true calling. Entering the world of showbiz with her ghazal performances alongside Ustad Ghulam Ali Khan, she instantly captured hearts. The ustad was extremely impressed by Rasika’s singing and remarked that her voice was soulful and pure. Rasika hails from a musical family and she began learning music when she was only eight years old. Growing up alongside her grandmother Gowri Ramakrishnan, a Carnatic violinist, and her mother Saras Shekar, a vocalist and Veena player, music

was in her blood. She learned singing from her aunt Visalakshi, who is also a vocalist and violinist, while Rasika was living in Dubai. “I began learning music simply as a hobby. Making a career out of it was never on my mind. It was only towards the end of my college years that I started taking music seriously and I realised that I could build a career in music. Even so, it took me a while to switch careers completely,” Rasika tells us. For someone who has lived with the form of music for years together, Rasika can’t stop singing its praises. The art form has a certain amount of depth and vastness to it, she explains. It is also holds interesting rhythms and great compositions. The emotions and sounds you’d find within a Carnatic composition range from joy, devotion, passion to even grief. In fact, it is the interweaving of devotion and aesthetics is what appeals to Rasika the most. Playing the flute for Ehsaan and Loy in an episode of Coke Studio turned into her entry pass to all of Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy’s future concerts. The exposure paved her way into Bollywood under the guidance of Shankar Mahadevan. Talking highly of the trio, Rasika tells us how humble, caring and encouraging they are. “If I was not asked to play the flute for Man Patang, which Ehsaan and Loy performed at their Coke studio outing, none of this would have happened to me. Once I started performing with Shankarji, Ehsaan, Loy and

their team it was great fun. Not only was I allowed to express the way I understood the song or music that we played, I also learned so much in return. Shankarji’s energy is infectious and one can learn so much by just being around him,” says Rasika. Singing her first song, Lambuda Kaka for the trio in Dekh Indian Circus, Rasika could not have hoped for a bigger debut. The singer believes in experimentation and her music is a soulful rendition of Sufi, Carnatic and Hindustani music. Lovers of Blues and Street-Driven Jazz music will find a note or two from their favourite music blended into an otherwise traditional composition. Taking every day as it comes, Rasika has big plans for her future. Not only is she planning to collaborate with numerous artists, individual projects are also on her mind. Her family is her biggest support system and they keep here going through all the highs and lows of her life. Rasika’s most recent release is the song Sau Aansoo from the fi lm Katti Batti.

Brewing Hindi Rock ballads Chehre, a Hindi Rock band, is all set to woo its audience with soothing melodies and a pinch of rock

By Zainab Kantawala @kantawalazainab


eady or not, get set to say goodbye to midweek blues as Chehre, a city-based Hindi Rock band, performs live at the The Hard Rock Café this Thursday. The band comprises of some talented musicians who bring diverse musical influences and years of experience to the stage. The line-up includes Chris Fonceca on guitars, Vijay Joshi on vocals, Sanjeev Pandkar on drums and

Mike Pereira on bass guitar. Their songs range from groovy classic rock music to comforting melodies with lyrics that promise to get you hooked instantly. “The band is now a year old. We have written about 20 original songs and have received an overwhelming response from the audience. When we formed Chehre, our aim was to present rock music in Hindi by using some traditional elements,” explains Mike. The band is the Hindi avatar of the popular English rock band Strange Brew. They are best known for creating mesmerising tunes by combining Hindustani c l a s s ic a l elements with Rock music. Their

music album Khwaab was a big hit in the local circuit. “After performing English Rock for years, we realised that we were more inclined towards Hindi music. So, we decided to give a new name to the band even as the members remained the same. Then we released Khwaab, which includes songs based on the idea that one should never stop dreaming. The entire album was well appreciated and after that there has been no looking back for us,” adds Mike. W it h Khwaab, Chehre has dared to bring

Progressive Rock to mainstream Hindi music and have managed to retain their originality. They have performed at The Great Indian Rock Festival, and their single, No Time, has won the Best Rock Song at the Ruff Awards. “It has become a lot easier to popularise our music today. Social media and YouTube provide an access to an audience and help us connect with people who appreciate our music,” he says. Chehre is one of the few Hindi rock bands in the city that has laid the foundation for this genre of music. They have been creating waves with their splendid performances in the city. “We will play some of our originals as well as sing the best pop numbers by some renowned artist like Atif Aslam, Shankar Ehsan Loy, etc. in our own style,” says Mike, as he talks about Thursday evening’s performance. So get set for a dose of Rock and Pop music. When: 24 September, 8 pm onwards Where: The Hard Rock Café, Koregaon Park




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A night with the Sultans of Swing

The Backpack, featuring some versatile musicians, is recreating 70s nostalgia with a tribute to Mark Knopfler and Dire Straits By Sudheer Gaikwad


he 1978 release of the self-named Dire Straits album, with a Fender Strat guitar on the album sleeve and the minty fresh Fender Strat twang infused nine-song repertoire, turned the rock music world on its head. Almost overnight, songs like Sultans of Swing and Down to the Waterline busted the music charts worldwide and they have remained part of every Pune band’s covers list for years on end. The highlight of the band’s immense popularity was, and still is, its founder Mark Knopfler’s bright, sparkling guitar tone and deft, finger-plucked artistry, as well as his lazy, half-spoken vocal drawl. The Backpack is a Pune quartet with a difference, who offer individual singers or musicians a versatile back-up ensemble, and being Indian icon Gary Lawyer’s current

Mark Knopfler

backing band gives them highcalibre credentials. Bassist Albert Dennis is hugely thrilled to be a part of the indie band. “It’s a pleasure making music with this bunch of serious, but cool, musicians. The chemistry we share, on and off stage, is magical,” Albert says. “This gig is special, bringing back memories of listening to Dire Straits on Radio Ceylon as a

The Backpack featuring (L to R), Chris (guitar), Denzil (drums), Leo (keyboards), and Albert (bass),

kid,” he adds. Leo Mathew, whose music career took off with a keyboard that his uncle gifted him, availed of initial music studies at Spicer College. About playing with The Backpack, he says, “It’s very different and challenging because you’re not doing the same thing as with a regular band but playing different genres of music.” Leo, who grew up listening to Dire Straits, says, “I’m a big fan of Knopfler’s guitar-playing and song-writing, so it’s a great thrill to cover their music.” Denzil Fernandes is much in demand for his sound engineering prowess and he is also a creative and resourceful drummer. In fact, his first kit was an electronic one that he’d built himself. “It is a privilege to be part of The Backpack, a band of musicians who not

only come up with interesting ideas but are also capable of doing the music justice,” he said. “Dire Straits is a unique band. They wrote an endless list of hit songs like Money for Nothing and Heavy Fuel. I’m really enjoying covering their music,” Denzil says. Chris Fonseca, has had an enviable and ever-rising graph as guitarist and musician and he is firmly established in the galaxy of the country’s guitarplaying greats. The Backpack is a perfect extension for him to put his amazing array of guitar-twanging skills to creative and constructive use. Chris said, “I am extremely excited to be doing this gig! Especially since Dire Straits was my introduction to rock music and Mark Knopfler’s sublime guitarplaying made a huge impact on my musical growth. To crown it all, we’ll be playing with the legendary Derek Julien, who never fails to make one’s jaw drop with his melodic virtuosity. We’ve chosen to perform all the Dire Straits anthems, along with tracks that leave room for extended jams and musical fun.” Where: High Spirits, Koregaon Park When: Sunday, September 20, 9 pm onwards sudheer.gaikwad@




indulge Try some fresh homemade snacks served straight out of an auto

A foodies’ delight in a rickshaw

By Zainab Kantawala @kantawalazainab


arked in a corner of JM Road, an old rusted rickshaw is where a couple stays busy preparing homemade Gujarati and Maharashtrian snacks for their customers. From students, to office goers and senior citizens, everybody crowds around by 5.30pm, when Shubhangi and Raju Rasker arrive in their rickshaw-turned-food-joint. “My husband used to drive this rickshaw. When the owner, Narmada ben, passed away, the family gave it to us. Narmada ben had started an enterprise of selling home-cooked food in Rasta Peth and we continued the same in this vehicle,” says Shubhangi. The couple call their venture Mahila Udyog since the effort provides employment to six women based in Nana Peth. Bajriwada, Khandvi, Methi Thepla, Samosa, Dhokla, Kothambir Wadi, Thalipeeth, Kachori and Ukdi Modak are some must try delicacies on offer. A single dish costs between Rs 10 and Rs 20. “We have so many customers each day that we don’t have time to sit idle even for a second. The food is inexpensive and tasty,” Shubhangi

rahul raut

says. The rickshaw journeys to JM Road six days a week and take a day off on Sunday. The vehicle is easy to spot as it’s perpetually surrounded by a bunch of people snacking around it. What sets them apart is that you are served food with a smile. The rickshaw is parked in the area until the food gets over, which is very quickly. “Our Surliwadi, Bhakarwadi and Balushai is quite popular with people. Besides our Bajriwadi is something that is sold quickly because customers can carry it home and store it for up to eight days,” adds Raju. Every snack is served with a flavourful green chutney. If you are a stickler for something sweet to end a snack, try the Modak, Gulab Jamun or Balushai that are freshly prepared. “We have earned the loyalty of our customers. We keep changing our menu with the season, and considering festivals. For example, in summers, we serve Kokum juice and Taak. Now, our Diwali special menu will consist of Shakarpada, Chakli, Karanji, Chuda and many more dishes,” adds Shubhangi. The couple’s humility has even managed to keep the police at bay. “They do come sometimes, but they have never bothered us,” she says. Where: Mahila Udyog, near Blackberry Showroom, JM Road TIME: 5:30 pm to 8 pm

YOUR CHOW AROUND TOWN Learn to bake like a Master Chef This time around the chefs at Hyatt Pune will share their secrets of baking morning bakery treats. Chef Parag Kandarkar and his team will demonstrate how to whip up some fresh croissants, Danish pastries, hard rolls and soft rolls. These can be paired with your morning cup of coffee, some hot soup or any continental main courses. When: September 19 Where: Eighty Eight, Hyatt Pune, Kalyani Nagar

Kebab Biryani and Curry Festival

Spice Kitchen and Shakahari will feature the festival over dinner with vegetarian and the non-vegetarian options. They will serve vegetarian as well non-vegetarian dishes whereas Shakahari will serve only

vegetarian menu in the restaurant. Taste the symphony of Indian flavours with traditional dishes like Boti Kebab, Chicken Tikka, Hariyali Kebab, Galauti Kebab, Tangri Kebab, Dahi Ke Kebab, Reshmi Kebab, Shikampur Kebab and Biryanis like Mutton Biryani, Chicken Biryani, Fish Biryani. Shakahari will offer delicacies like Shami Kebab, Paneer Kebab and various delectable vegetarian biryanis. The menu will be switched every four days. When: Till September 29 Where: JW Marriott Hotel, Senapati Bapat Road

chicken with bell pepper ragout Sicillian Cassata, Tiramisu, etc. the menu also offers an exclusive Buffalo Steak which will fill the place of beef in the guest’s palette. When: Till October 31 Where: Alto Vino, Senapati Bapat Road

Ganesh Chaturthi Special

As the city welcomes Lord Ganesha, Khandani Rajdhani gives you chance

Alto Vino New Menu Launch

Alto Vino, an authentic Italian restaurant offers new Italian flavours as they recently unveiled an elegant new menu. The resident Chef Christian Huber has put together resplendent flavours of Italy with some homemade pastas, signature pizzas and traditional specialties under Pesce (Seafood) and Carne (Meat). While guests will continue to find their favourites on the menu like, Rye ravioli with spinach, mozzarella and sage butter, Devil’s style

Chef Renae Smith presents new menu This Saturday night indulge in a three course menu designed by Chef Renae Smith who was labelled as the Mystery Box Queen by the other contestants of Master Chef Australia 2014. This menu includes her top dishes that were presented at the Master Chef Australia, with wine and other few drinks. You can also catch Renae Smith launching Sunday Barbecue Brunch, a new property of Classic Rock Coffee Co. and will witness her giving a demo of best practice while barbecuing. A cooking competition with the elements of Master chef will be judged by her and other Chefs. When: September 19 and 20 Where: Classic Rock Coffee Co, Kalyani Nagar

Sports Screening to savour onto the most loved sweet of Lord Ganesha- Modaks. As a part of the celebration, they are serving unlimited Modaks like Ukadiche Modak and Mawa Modak along with their thali to all their guests who come to dine on the 1st day and 10th day (Visarjan) of the festival. Relish these delicious Modaks along with Rajdhani’s signature thali dishes like Dal Baati Churma, Dhokla, Khandvi, Kadhi, Bajra Rotla, Thepla, Apple Jalebi and much more! When: Till September 27 Where: All Khandani Rajdhani outlets

What better than catching up with your friends over beer and cocktails? It gets even better when you revel in a selection of ice cold international beers and special cocktails watching your favourite sports. This September and October, enjoy all major sporting events like Football, Cycling, and Rugby screened at the Best Brews Lounge Bar and relish our promotional drinks like smoked cocktails, herb infused cocktails, hot cocktails, international flavoured beer and more. When: Ongoing Where: Best Brews by Four Points by Sheraton, Nagar Road

So you think you can cook?



US-based Chef Christopher Koetke, who is on a week-long visit to India, held an interesting master class session in the city recently. In a span of less than two hours, he shared fascinating stories of his career, that stretches over 30 years, and displayed excellent multi-tasking skills

Christopher Koetke, vice president, Kendall College School of Culinary Art, Chicago taking master class at JW Marriott

By Heena Grover Menon @HeenaGM


atching all those competitive cooking series on TV, it won’t be surprising if you have wondered how it would feel to be in the same room where famous chefs dish out magical creations. Well, some Puneites lucked out when they got an opportunity to meet Chef Christopher Koetke. The ace chef enticed his audience, giving demos of various chopping techniques, preparing four lips-smacking dishes and constantly interacting with his audience. Holding his favourite knife, which has been his best friend for the past

20 years and has travelled the world with him, Chef Christopher began his master class saying, “Everything you want to know and learn about cooking begins from your knife. When in a kitchen, it’s like an extension of your arm, and having the right kind of knives is the first and foremost requirement.” For beginners, the chef recommends practicing chopping and slicing procedures on potatoes. He showed the different ways in which a potato can be sliced followed by other vegetables, such as mushrooms, leafy vegetables, carrots and onions. While talking about the basics of becoming a chef three of the most important

lessons that are taught at Chef Christopher’s culinary college are technique, accuracy and speed. “It’s very important for a budding chef to pay attention to these three core points because they are interrelated. Learning the right technique, together with accuracy while sticking to the deadline, in terms of speed, can really take you places,” he shared. Making wisecracks, on how he pulls up his students back in Chicago, Chef Christopher shared many valuable inputs which could come handy for cooking enthusiasts – one of the most important inputs being not going by the book. “The recipe to becoming a great chef is not following any recipe,” he laughed, adding that a chef should always use his or her senses, which can create wonders no matter which part of the world they have to work. A good cook must follow a simple method which he calls TAAT – Taste, Analyse, Adjust, Taste. “Don’t ever send out your dish without tasting it a couple of times. The trick is to always taste from the pan, analyse if it has the right flavours, adjust if you feel something is missing, taste again and then allow it to be served to your patron,” he explained. Two hours later, as the chef plated a gorgeous spread of Roasted Tournedo of Salmon, Mushroom & Snail

Ragout, Salmon Sausage and Succotash Salad, our hungry souls couldn’t resist. So when he spoke that a good plate should have all the flavours packed together, every bite of what he had served now matched his words in the true sense. heena.grover@





FEATURES By Zainab Kantawala @kantawalazainab


aking up in the morning all by yourself in an unfamiliar dwelling can be thrilling and unnerving at the same time. There is nothing to do but explore you surroundings. Once you get over the initial hiccups, travelling solo opens new chapters in your life and the experiences you gather along the way will only enrich your life, making it

Ameya Gokhale

more exciting. Those who so choose to travel alone are adventurous and driven by a wanderlust. It’s their desire to walk on an unfamiliar path and celebrate independence that drives them to travel alone. It is certainly joyful to travel with friends or family, but travelling solo is liberating in its unpredictability. Meeting new people, trying out different cuisines, finding your way around places, surviving the odds, and facing fears can be a different experience altogether. If you’re ready to disconnect from the world, forget to check your emails for a few days, keep all worldly woes aside, then you’re halfway there to just packing your bags and leaving for a vacation. WHY TRAVEL SOLO? Making new friends, teaming up with other travel buddies and ending up expanding the plan, all this is only possible if you have taken up travelling alone. “Travelling alone gives you a different kind of experience. It increases your confidence and makes you strong as a person. If you have to plan a

vacation with your family or friends, then you have to wait for the holiday season and plan according to others’ convenience. So whenever I get days off from work, I simply pack my bags and leave,” says Neha Joshi, an advertising consultant. Neha has been to Bhuj, Mangalore, Mahabalipuram, Chennai and Pondicherry. “My last trip was to Rann of Kutch and my driver only understood Gujarati. At fi rst, communicating with him was difficult. Eventually, in a matter of just two days, I started speaking a little bit of Gujarati. You experience such small joys only when you are alone,” she adds. Solo travellers can change their plan when they want to spend an extra night on the desert, or go bungee jumping from a high bridge, Neha points out. “I have always loved travelling alone. I have been to Spain, Ireland, Jordan, Poland, Australia, United Kingdom, Turkey, Macau, Hong Kong, Dubai, Prague and Thailand. In fact, next week, I am leaving for Switzerland. Each trip has taught me something new about myself. Like going for a 6-km coastal walk from Bondi to Coogee beach in Sydney made me realise that I have pretty great stamina,” says Radhika Mehta, a freelance golf and travel writer. A LEARNING EXPERIENCE Photographer Supriya Kantak is comfortable travelling alone. On her fi rst solo trip to Thailand, she decided to make it a learning experience. “I learnt the Thai massage from an expert. I also took Muay Thai (kickboxing) classes there for about two weeks,” she says. Besides, you also learn to face the challenges that come our way when you travel by yourself and your solutions will, more often than not, surprise you. “It was the last day of my journey so I had decided to go shopping and splurge all the money I had, saving a few bucks just for the sake of the journey back home. I made new friends while having dinner at a restaurant and all of them decided to go clubbing but I was left with no money. I tried to excuse myself but they insisted on paying for me. At fi rst, I had jitters thinking what if they don’t pay for me, as they were strangers after all. Everything went off smoothly and I learned to trust people,” Supriya adds. Ameya Gokhale, another photographer and travel enthusiast, insists on staying positive while travelling. “The biggest thing I have learned while travelling is that it is important to keep an open mind. People might be different in looks, colour, religion or social standing - but there’s always a lot of humanity if you keep an open mind,” he says.



Wandering solo Trupti Bhosale

Virpratap Vikram Singh

Leave your grumpy old self behind and give travelling by yourself a shot to discover a new you

INTERESTING ENCOUNTERS MJ Sunny has been travelling alone for the past nine years. Pondicherry, Kolhapur, Lucknow, Nashik, Goa and Jodhpur feature among his favourite destinations. Sunny likes exploring new places and experimenting with food. While in Jodhpur, he has woken way before sunrise only to gorge on some piping hot Mirchi Wade. He has even gate crashed a wedding in the same city. “Once, on a weekend, I headed for an absolutely unplanned trip. I took a bus from Swargate, and got off at a village about 60 kms from Pune. I realised that I had not carried my wallet. Penniless, I was pointlessly walking, hoping for someone who could help. I saw a bunch of people gathered around at one of the village h o u s e s and realised that someone had passed away. I

attended the funeral too. One of the relative grew suspicious and asked me how I knew the family. I told him my story and confessed that I was there for food. He took me home, fed me and even offered to put me up in a room,” Sunny says. On his fi rst international solo trip, Ameya got to meet some of the best musicians, all thanks to his tattoo. “I was in New Orleans, at the Louis Armstrong Jazz Festival, standing in the crowd, and listening to the music. I didn’t know anyone in the crowd. I have a tattoo on my lower neck that reads Made in India. Somebody spotted me in the crowd and started a conversation with me. He told me that he had visited India in the 70’s. He then proceeded to introduce me to some of the best musicians, who were playing that day. I went backstage, met them and their band members. I had the time of my life, thanks to the tattoo,” he says. Supriya too recalls her experience in Ladakh. “Ladakh is vast and it has a lot of open space. I had

gone there during the off season because I wanted to avoid the tourist crowd. One day, I spotted a snow leopard, which is a rare sight. It turned into an unforgettable experience,” she adds. MEETING NEW PEOPLE While travelling with friends, most people tend to stick around among familiar faces, preferring not to venture out and communicate with others. While travelling alone, however, interacting with fellow travellers and localites becomes a necessity. “On my recent trip to the Himalayas, I happened to meet the most amazing people. It was my last day, I had to go from Kaza to Manali, but, due to heavy snowfall, the pass was blocked and bus services were put on hold. I had nowhere to go so I decided to enquire for any other mode of transport. I met a few women travellers, who had booked a Sumo. They willingly took me onboard. The car too couldn’t get us too far since the roads were completely under snow. We had to trek 10kms on the Himalayas, and the view was so breathtaking that it will stay with me in my mind forever,” says Virpratap Vikram Singh, a social media executive. According

Supriya Kantak shot this picture in Bangkok

Radhika Mehta

to him, travelling alone can prove to be one of the most rewarding things ever. Same is the case with Sunny who is a music jockey with a popular channel. He met random people on his trip to Jodhpur and ended up making friends for life. “Being a sociable person, I have interacted with people I met in the bus, taxi or the train. You can do so only when you are travelling alone. I am still in touch with some of the people I met,” he says. Travelling alone lets you explore aspects of your personality you are not familiar with. A quiet and shy person by nature can open up, party and chill with strangers too. “I was walking back to my hotel from the Iskcon Temple in Dublin when I met a girl and she helped me with the direction to my hotel. We became very good friends in a couple of minutes and spent the entire evening dancing together,” says Radhika. IN THE HOUR OF NEED After having travelled alone in UK, Trupti Bhosale, a software engineer, was frightened about her fi rst solo trip around India. It was a 10-day trip to Andaman and Nicobar. “Even on my fl ight to Port Blair I was unsure about the trip but I am glad I went ahead with the plan. After 10 days, I came back as a new person,” she says. The clean streets, lined with coconut trees, helped Trupti calm down. She had planned a trip to Ross Island, when she fell sick, and there was nobody around to look after her. “I had to catch a ferry in the morning, and I suffered from food poisoning. I was dehydrated and had got so weak that I couldn’t even walk. I asked a family at the port for help. The lady made me sleep and even got me medicines. The captain of the ship vacated a bunker for me and made me dal chawal. The experience restored my faith humanity,” she says. SAFETY FIRST Safety is the main concern when it comes to solo travelling. You need to be aware all time, and having a good sense of direction helps. “One should be extra careful while travelling alone. Trusting your gut is also important. If you feel unsafe or uncomfortable, the best option is not to go ahead with it. Women should be careful about what they drink, while at a nightclub” says Supriya. Knowing the place and the culture well before travelling is the mantra for Trupti. “I do a lot of research while planning my travel. I look for basic information about sightseeing, culture, and, most

Neha Joshi

importantly, the crime rate in the area,” she says. Making good local contacts, with like-minded people and staying positive helps on the trip. “Local contacts, who have the same interests as you, come in handy when you need them the most. Do not start conversations in a negative manner. One should carry lots of snacks for times when finding something that suits your taste is difficult,” says Ameya. Solo travellers consider being alert and aware of one’s surrounding most important. Keeping the hotel informed about your whereabouts and carrying a pepper spray are other safety measures. “The biggest challenge is to prepare your self. If you have a long journey, you will get bored and tend to sleep, which is not a good idea. You have to stay awake for your own safety. You can listen to music or read. One should also carry basic medication where ever you go,” says Neha.

Breaking barriers A recent survey by Skyscanner, a leading global travel search engine, revealed that 70% of Indian women travellers have either gone on a solo trip or are planning one. The survey, which studied the travel habits of Indian travellers, highlighted that 37% of Indian women travellers have done a solo trip while 33% are open to the idea of travelling alone. “It is encouraging that Indian women are increasingly breaking stereotypes and travelling alone. The results reveal that Indian women solo travellers prefer domestic destinations as much as overseas ones. There is an opportunity to further promote Indian destinations to solo travellers all over the world,” says Kavitha Gnanamurthy, senior marketing manager, Skyscanner India.



Dil maange more pics by Aniruddha Rajandekar

Finally, a Hyundai SUV to upgrade to By Tushar Burman @tburman


hen the “ix25” showed up at international motor shows and events, we knew we were looking at Hyundai’s next India-bound vehicle. Based on the same platform as the i20 hatchback, the unfortunatelynamed Hyundai Creta is a compact SUV that takes the fight straight to the Duster and S-Cross. Other than a shared platform, the Creta is all-new for India. Hyundai haven’t had an SUV in the lineup save for the Santa Fe, leaving a very large gap in the product range. The Creta fills this void, and is a credible alternative for those who would otherwise buy a Verna sedan.

First impressions are good. The Creta looks well-designed and follows the family design language reasonably well, with just a few angles to put a kink in the ‘fluidic’ theme. The front is reminiscent of the Santa Fe, which is a very good thing considering that vehicle costs twice as much. Technically a crossover, it’s a deceptive size, the Creta. You could pass it by and marvel at its compact size, but up close, it’s a bit more imposing than, say, a Duster. We tested the only automatic-equipped trim in the lineup, the diesel SX+ trim with a 1.6-litre motor. On the inside, it’s a different matter. The cabin has decent head and shoulder room, but it looks narrow and is an easy reach side-toside. Unlike recently released SUVs that are more optimistic with their packaging, the Creta is strictly a five-seater, and the rear passengers have generous legroom. The

floorpan is flat, so accommodating we’ve seen in the excellent i20 Elite, three passengers on the rear seat which was unexpected, particularly is no problem. The boot too is since they also share a parts bin for well-sized and deep, providing some items. Again, the experiment generous cargo space and a parcel with the dirty mauve colour doesn’t shelf that’ll hold plenty. Visibility work for the Creta automatic. from the driver’s seat is good but it’s On the go, the Creta feels very not an airy-feeling cabin, a sense different from other Hyundais heightened by the darker mauve we’ve sampled. An almost universal colour across the cabin. Hyundai complaint with their hatchbacks would have been better off using and sedans is the the traditional beige that super-light, almost looks so classy in their PlayStationVerdict other vehicles, and like steering + Feature list, we understand that that doesn’t rear legroom based on feedback, weigh-up at - Dim interior, price they have made speed and the this change on later soft, wallowy TGS rating production models. suspension that ;;; Z Equipment levels works great until are about what we’d expect it doesn’t. The Creta from a vehicle in this price range. tempers the light steering There’s a touchscreen infotainment so there’s at least some resistance system with navigation, Bluetooth, to changing direction. Whether steering-mounted controls and that’s because of the chunky climate control. Safety is sorted 205-section tyres or a different thanks to dual front airbags and rack, we’re not sure, but this is ABS. Touchscreen units seem to welcome. The suspension is very be par for the course these days, but different, feeling firm. The Creta we wish manufacturers paid a little stays quite flat when chucked more attention to the interfaces around corners, but you’re likely they provide. The Hyundai system to hear some complaints about feels a bit aftermarket, like they ride quality from passengers at went to an OEM that could do the higher speeds. The 190mm ground job cheap and quick. It’s not very clearance is sufficient for the most intuitive and kept trying to route onerous speed-breakers, but this is me to Chennai, despite cancelling not an SUV you want to actually the route several times. Creta go take too far off-road. home? The Creta’s 128PS/260Nm The dual-tone dash is alright, 1.6-litre motor is the same as the but left us feeling underwhelmed. I one in the Verna, which tends to expect a bit more richness from my pack a bit of a turbo punch. The Rs 13.6 lac vehicle. The plastics feel 6-speed automatic transmission like they’re a notch down from what on our test vehicle does well

in tempering that wallop and progress is smooth and drama-free in all conditions. There’s no sport mode in this ‘box and mashing the throttle just inspires noise, not alacrity. Speaking of: the cabin is generally quiet while cruising at constant speed, but the engine noise does intrude a bit when accelerating. Hyundai claims about 17kmpl from the automatic, and after our 300-odd kilometres with the car, we expect real-world numbers to be not far off. At Rs 13.6 lac ex-showroom, the Creta automatic feels expensive for what it offers. Sure, it’s a reasonably good-looking SUV with decent space and a good motor, but it feels like Hyundai made some adjustments in interior quality to hit that price point. You don’t get the nice leather upholstery, for instance and the Creta-branded leatherette seat covers on our test car were a poor substitute. You also lose the 17” wheels of the top-end SX(O) variant, making do with 16” rims for the auto. This is unlike other Hyundais, where you tend to pay more than the competition but walk away with a lot of value. The Creta ticks the checkboxes, but we ended our drive wanting a bit more. We think the Renault Duster/ Nissan Terrano is relatively safe from the Creta onslaught, despite not offering an automatic gearbox yet. They have an advantage in ride quality, offer a bit less passenger space and a little less road presence but to our eyes, a more sortedlooking interior.

The gown collector!


She is suave, fashionable and a self-confessed shopaholic, meet Laleh Busheri, CEO of Prashanti Cancer Mission, who loves to travel and shop around the world, when she is not caught up at work


o when we thought of doing a fun fashion feature with person who is crazy about shopping, it was Laleh whose name instantly rang bell in my mind. I had heard that she has a fabulous collection of gowns which she has collected over the years from her travels across the world. Next, we asked her for an appointment, and when we told her what the story is going to be about, she laughed heartily and said we were more than welcome to see her priced possessions. As we waited at the living room of her beautiful, plush bungalow in NIBM, Laleh walked down the stairs wearing one of her favourite purple gowns which he has picked up from one of the boutiques at the Fifth Avenue, New York. As we sat down for a cup of tea, she showed some of the gowns from her collection, smiling with a twinkle in her eyes. Almost like that little girl who shows off her new dress to her friends. “The way sarees are a gorgeous outfit and have a royal feel to it, I find evening gowns extremely classy and debonair. I am born in Pune and brought up in Mumbai, and the idea of wearing gowns to events and different occasions came from the upbringing there. Unlike Pune, where young

girls and women show up in tracks or shorts at the theatres or restaurants, in Mumbai I have always grown up seeing women turning up in beautiful gowns for lunches, theatres and even movie nights.” No matter which part of the city she is, Laleh makes sure she carries her gowns with her and prefers wearing them instead of other outfits. “My favourite place in the whole world to shop for gowns is New York. There’s street there which multiple numbers of some very well-known and unknown boutiques at every nook and corner which will spoil you with options. There’s particular one called Macy’s which has all the floors full of beautiful evening gowns. Apart from that, one of my most favourite labels is Donna Karan. Laleh’s quick tip to wear your gown right Remember that the gown makes a statement in itself, so never over do the look with heavy accessories. My personal favourite is a pair of diamond earrings and a statement necklace if it’s a deep neck or an off shoulder gown. Pair it with high heel stilettos in gold or silver, as they go brilliantly with almost all the shades. My all-time favourite is a classic black evening gown, but other than that a wine colour gown looks extremely graceful. Just check for the right cut according to your body type!

rahul raut

By Heena Grover Menon @HeenaGM


Meet the country’s youngest Dastango Ankit Chadha has dedicated five years of his life to revive the art of Urdu storytelling. Connect with his thoughts before you watch his performance this weekend

narrated were largely based on the adventures of Amir Hamza, who was the uncle of prophet Muhammed. The beauty of the art form lies in its narration. The language is rich and the dramatic recitation makes every minute of the performance worth your time.

By Salonee Mistry @Sal0412


he youngest known Dastango in the country, Ankit Chadha, sets a perfect example of where passion and dedication can get you. It simply took one event page on Facebook to change the 27-year-old’s life. Geared up for a show in Pune this weekend, Ankit’s performance is a representation of his work over the last two years.

Story telling at its best Developed over 1,000 years ago, the art of Dastangoi, or storytelling, is once again catching the audience’s attention. Revived by Mahmood Farooqui an Urdu litterateur, better known for co-directing and writing the film Peepli Live with his wife Anusha Rizvi, and SR Faruqui, Dastangoi is slowly but steadily pulling in the younger generation. The last known dastango before it was revived recently was 88 years ago in 1928. Back then the stories

Being a dastango Promising that every Dastangoi performance is a confluence of history, literature and a passionate performer, Ankit is certain of the art form’s rewarding nature. “Irrespective of the age group, the audience’s response has always been overwhelming, encouraging and, even demanding. They have showed their love by becoming our loyal listeners, by patronising and inviting us to shows, and by actively being involved in choosing which story we could work on next. What more could a performer ask for,” says the overwhelmed actor. Being a part of several theatre performances while he was still in college, Ankit attended a workshop conducted by Mahmood Farooqui and Danish Husain in 2010. The workshop turned into a runway for

Ankit’s take off into a life he had never imagined. Dastangoi requires no lights, sounds, stage design or even a stage to be arranged and this, for Ankit, is the best part of the performance. He is attracted by the minimalist art form and its ability to help express a variety of content. “Doing what I do is an essential part of my identity. Dastangoi has made me a better listener. It has become a way of life for me and it allows me to do what I love - writing, for example,” Ankit tells us. Currently, the actor’s focus lies on stories for children. Involving the next gen was not just a way to welcome new stories, but it also encouraged the rise of new storytellers and new audiences.

Switching careers In time, Ankit turned into a curious as well as comfortable dastango and now he wanted to explore so much more. His first work of art was a spoof on dastangoi in the dastan form itself. Next was a piece on mobile phones for a client. The second piece bolstered Ankit’s confidence enough for him to quit his marketing job and take up acting as a full-time profession. “No job meant no salary and no salary meant worried parents. My parents had hoped for me to

become an IAS officer and when I selected a profession that screamed instability their apprehension shot over the roof. It was only after my mother saw a recitation that she was convinced about what I was investing my time in,” shares Ankit. The joy of doing what he does Growing up, Ankit always wanted to become a song writer. He loved writing and was also interested in theatre. Combining everything he loved, dastangoi seemed to be God’s gift for the talented young man. After he shifted careers, Ankit began writing much more. He believed that he had 24 hours to tell stories and wanted to make the most of it. A patron, who later became a close friend, wrote him a letter thanking him for doing what he does. Several listeners have approached the actor from time to time appreciating his work as a dastango and providing a service to the culture, history and literature of India. Most of all, it’s the overwhelming love and appreciation that inspire Ankit to take a leap of faith and stay afloat in the creative world. When: September 20, 6.45pm Where: The Loft, Camp



Have you dined here yet?

Breaking away from the mundane restaurants spread across the city, here are f ive joints that hold the key to teleporting you to a different world altogether pics by Aniruddha Rajandekar

By Salonee Mistry @Sal0412


tuck in the daily rigmarole might not leave you with a lot of time to travel and take a muchneeded break. Despair not. Here’s a solution for you. It has taken some serious rummaging through a growing list of interesting restaurants, which offer

cuisines from across the world, to provide you the perfect experience for when you’re in the mood to unwind. If you’re feeling homesick, read on to find out where to get the best Maa ki Daal. Also, since its nearing end-of-month, most restaurants on this list are easy on the pocket. Yeah, we really care. salonee.mistry

Village- The Soul of India, Hadapsar

Must Try Mirchi ka Halwa Mutton Rahra


his restaurant creates the ambience of a village to the tiniest detail. From the authentic cane chairs and benches to the decoration across the restaurant, the ambience is every bit like that of a tour around a village. A fake tree in one section under which a mannequin practices palmistry, a bioscope and a temporary tattoo artist are among the many attractions of the restaurant. Offering a buffet menu Village has very amusingly divided the food counters to highlight the attractions of a village. For example, the man inside the well in the village serves you drinks. A section of the seating area is called the police thana, another section is called khana pur and Indian seating section called chivda bazaar. Other artefacts like an auto rickshaw, a truck and a woman riding a bullock cart among other things also add to the ambience. The entire ceiling is covered with triangular flags and lanterns. The buffet is priced at Rs 450 for lunch and Rs 500 for dinner and the restaurant serves a pure vegetarian

Oye Pappe, Hadapsar


Must Try Kanpur ki chowmein Junka Bhakar menu. Located at Amanora Mall, Hadapsar, the restaurant was one-of-its-kind when it started off. “There was no restaurant that created a link between the urban and rural crowd. Not only does this restaurant give you the feel of

being in a village, it also offers a wide range of delicacies to choose from. There are close to 60 varieties of dishes covering regions such as Maharashtra, UP, Gujarat, Bengal among others,” said Pinaki Sarkhel, the manager of the restaurant.

ringing you an ambience and cuisine from the land of five rivers, Oye Pappe is a Punjabi restaurant that has taken the effort to be a little different from the others. Serving only a buffet menu, the restaurant has found itself a cozy corner in Amanora Mall, Hadapsar. At the door a mannequin, dressed in a yellow tehmat and red kurta and wielding a long stick in his hand, welcomes you indoors. It’s difficult not to notice the intricate attention to detail that has gone into the decor of the place. Small cushions, customised with famous Bollywood dialogues, and kettle-shaped lanterns hanging above your head as you settle in. An open cage on a raised platform adorns the centre stage at the restaurant. A panwala

on a scooter and Bollywood music from the 90’s makes the dining experience worth every penny. Priced at Rs 500, for lunch, and Rs 575, for dinner, the buffet offers a range NorthIndian, Mughlai and Chinese cuisines, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. The food is cooked as well as served in copper handis, just like back home in Punjab. Serving customers for the last four years, Oye Pappe was set up based on a humble idea. “We wanted to bring Punjab to Punekars since not everyone has a chance to experience or visit that region. Making sure that smaller details like the kind of plates and glasses used to serve, or the kind of seating one would find in Punjab was essential to present a complete package,” says Pinaki Sarkhel, manager of the restaurant.


11 East Street Cafe, Camp



hat started off as a college project for Joravar Sachdev is now one of the most sought after restaurants in the city. “The main idea was to have a bus parked in the restaurant. Then evolved the idea of a London street,” says Joravar. Replicating a street in London to near perfection, the 11 East Street Cafe, situated in Camp, is a splendid place to spend an evening with friends. With wooden benches, lamps and a fountain right in the middle, the cafe does indeed feel like a street right out of London. Introducing international cuisine to food lovers, the cafe was opened eight years ago and provided a wide variety of options to choose from. With the Bacardi Chicken being the best-selling dish the approximate cost for two at the restaurant is close to Rs 1,600, alcohol included. Even today, not only has the restaurant stuck to dishes that London is best known for, think Fish and Chips, but is also involved in creating their own dishes. Pastas, pizzas, sandwiches, salads, Indian and continental food as well as a few fusion dishes like Chilly Chicken Biryani are also a part of the menu. The cafe is heaven-sent for Nutella lovers. The special Nutella subsection of the menu includes 12 dishes, such as Nutella churros, Nutella and Banana French Toast along with a Nutella milkshake.

Must Try Bacardi Chicken Cheesecake

The Brooklyn Shuffle Bar, Koregaon Park


f you are a fan of shows like How I Met Your Mother, Sex and the City, or 2 Broke Girls, the Brooklyn Shuffle Bar in Koregoan Park is just the place for you. Featuring the best of Brooklyn, this restaurant is a surprise package. The quintessential red booths, high stools and round tables are scattered throughout the restaurant. Taking it up a notch, one end of the restaurant is a brick wall giving the diner a rustic look and perhaps setting the scene for future stand-up comedy nights. Posters, a baseball bat, record labels and pictures of famous personalities hailing from Brooklyn, make the place worth a visit. Located in the calm and quiet lane of Koregoan Park, the seating outside allows you to savour your meal in peace. A meal here costs approximately Rs 1,600 for two, including alcohol. While you wait to be served you will find yourself tapping your foot to Deep House music. Try their best selling dish, the Stuffed Chicken Burger which tastes even better when ordered with a cold beer. The cheesecake is also the restaurant’s speciality. Serving a complete American fast-food menu the restaurant also offers a varied range of cocktails. “There is no other restaurant in Pune that caters to such a concept. The aim was to present a restaurant that was different from what Puneites were used to seeing,” says Shriganesh Kamble, manager of the restaurant.

Must Try Stuffed Chicken Burger The Cold War (Cocktail)

Tim Luk Luk, Pimple Saudagar


Must Try Kukkad Tipsy Nutella Menu

ocated on Happy Thoughts road, in Pimple Saudagar, the restaurant Tim Luk Luk is sure to leave you feeling happy and content. The best time to visit the restaurant is in the evening. Against the dark sky the well-lit restaurant is a perfect replica of a dhaba. Structured around ample open space, the seating area involves the traditional way of sitting on a mattress on the ground. The tables and chairs have a red, blue and green colour scheme. Even the ceiling is painted in the same scheme. Cane chairs and khatiyas are also a part of the setting. Individual booths, painted in quirky designs only bring you closer to an actual dhaba. Half a truck is also a part of the ambience with several other smaller details like the copper

plates and glasses. Apart from serving the regular fare, creating new dishes is something that the restaurant takes pride in. Their best-selling dish — Kukkad Tipsy — is a restaurant invention which is essentially flamed chicken spiked with tequila. Joravar Sachdev started the restaurant because he could not incorporate the concept of a dhaba at any of his other establishments. He could not be more pleased about the response received, “There was a lot of research conducted prior to opening the restaurant. There were so many smaller things that were kept in mind because that is what makes a mark on the visitor.” Attempting to please every customer is the biggest challenge admits Joravar.


NightLife After a long and hard search for India’s Next Top Model, the producers decided to take a break, drive down to Pune, and party with the entire team of the show By Manasi Shroff @ManasiShroff


hat else must you do on a Saturday night after weeks of hard work and challenges? Well, you party hard! That’s exactly what the team of India’s Next Top Model did. The Mugshot Café was glittering when the stunning participants of the show partied to glory, letting all the stress that had built up in the past few weeks, fade away. The top three finalists, Gloria, Rushali and Danielle couldn’t have been more excited to drive down to Pune as it was

Make way for the next top model


their first trip to the city. Surely the venue provided an amazing experience in a new city and, when asked, they unanimously said that the city was one place they’d love to visit again. With drinks and amazing music in the house, these fashionable girls looked like professionals with their 10-week-long makeover, creating an iconic style statement. Danielle and Rushali chose to keep it bright, while Gloria was all about sporting the LBD. The host, Madhu Chopra, kept it classy and seemed to be proud that the girls had outshone themselves. While flowers were exchanged, the producer of the show, Akash Sharma, said that his journey with the show was a fun, learning experience. As the night progressed, the idea of the show getting over sank in and the café was filled with mixed emotions. Nevertheless, the girls and the crew had a blast and everyone just wished the night wouldn’t come to an end.

Where’s the party tonight Puddle of Mudd

You’ve heard their music, now see them Live. If you listen to alternative rock music, there’s a rare chance you’ve missed out on Puddle of Mudd. With back- to- back hit albums, Puddle of Mudd strikes a very powerful resonance with idolisers of alternative rock music. Known for his spontaneity, wild onstage delivery and lack of pretense, the band is one of rock’s true greats. The four rock stars of Puddle of Mudd, Wesley Reid Scantlin (vocals/guitar), Matt Fuller (lead guitar/backing vocals), Michael John Adams (bass/backing vocals) and Dave Moreno (drums/ backing vocals) will dazzle audiences at The Hard Rock Café. When: September 30 Where: Hard Rock Café, Koregaon Park


This coming Saturday The Beer Cafe brings you Chutzpah which is a Pune based band. They are an acoustic group featuring Shivam Shankar on Guitar and Vocals and Parag Bhide on Percussion. They are not bound by genre or style; they play original songs as well as covers. They started off as a jam session at one of the Books Chai Cafe and since then they have performed at some of the coolest venues in Pune. They are known for their colourful performances perfectly blended with energy and they know exactly how to get the crowd rolling. When: September 19 Where: The Beer Café, Koregaon Park

Krazy Electrons

Krazy Electrons are back after a long time at High Spirits. Their music can best be described as pulsating electronica combined with the ethnic elements of the mystical east. KE is a unique electro-live act that is driven by the philosophies of Quantum Physics.

Every performance by the trio is a reflection of self-styled grooves blended with the Indian Classical Music and other eastern elements. Their music is inspired by a wide spectrum of genres as an effect of the diverse musical influences, thus giving birth to the term: EthnoElectronia. When: September 20 Where: High Spirits, Koregaon Park

Soak Sundowner with Spinmaster Kaz

Soak brings to you this Sunday a Packet Full of amazing music presented by Pune’s favourite. Enjoy in the company of friends as you take on the dance floor and shake a leg on some great Bollywood tunes played by Spinmaster Kaz. Spinmaster Kaz started deejaying

in the year 2000. DJ Kaz started deejaying in the year 2000. He joined Nirvana in the year 2003. His mixing of music, looping, rapping makes the entire crowd go crazy on the dance floor. He has played with India’s top most DJ’s, like DJ Aqueel, DJ Akbar Sami, DJ Suketu, DJ Notorious, DJ Akhtar, DJ Nikhil Chinappa, DJ Nasha, and so on. Also he has performed with international DJ’s like Joyce Mercedes- Netherlands, Lauren Pope- UK, John Guard and so on. When: September 20 Where: Soak, Novotel, Viman Nagar

Psylent Sunday

Get set to rock the dance floor as Alien Trancesistor, Cacofonix and Steve Peter take you on a psychedelic journey. Alien Trancesistor aka Vikram is from Bangalore is the co-founder of Vantara Vichitra Records. His DJ’ing career began in the year 2000 and he has performed at various festivals and parties in India, Australia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka alongside well renowned artists like Petran, Kerlivin, Full Face, Gidra and the list goes on. Cacofonix has dived into music production since 2007 and has been part of tracks released on Bijah Records, Liquid Frequency as well as a collaboration track on Vantara Vichitra. Steve Peter is responsible for generating an energy on the dance floor with the freshest and grooviest music. When: September 20 Where: Bluefrog, Yerwada




Tutoring kids so they don’t drop out By Salonee Mistry

money Naeema earns she spends it on buying books for them, making this a nonprofit venture. For her, the best part of this job is that she is moldt has been 12 years now that Naeema Shaikh (39), has ing these children to be better human beings. She is been tutoring children from the areas near her house in giving them direction and keeping them focused on NIBM. It was not exactly her childhood dream to teach learning. Coming from the backgrounds that they do, children but the joy she gets from it is unexplainable. there are ample chances for these kids to drop out of There is absolutely no age restriction and she teaches school. Keeping them away from that feeling is every subject to these children, some of who what keeps her going. While there are no chalcome from poor families, around 30 of them. lenges in particular, managing her house and Be it Math, Science, English, Arabic or even these kids sometimes gets tedious. History Naeema is well-versed with it all. “Education in today’s day and age is most Naeema started tutoring children to unekar important. Without a solid base, achieving anyearn some quick pocket money during her thing in the future might just be very difficult. If college days. After she got married she conmoney is not on your side, working hard is the tinued her teaching but without the need to only option. The drive to work hard is possible only if it earn from it. She charges an extremely minimal fee. “The is indoctrinated in the children from a really young age,” children that come to me have extremely varied backbelieves Naeema. grounds. While some come from middle-class families She promises to continue teaching till she can, and others are from poor background. It is important that push some more even when she can’t. She has two kids the parents make their child’s education their prioriof her own. While her elder son is working, her daughter ty and save for it. The fact that I charge makes them is pursuing her graduation in computer science. take education more seriously as they understand that nothing comes for free,” says Naeema. From whatever



Dazzle on the aisle!


very bride has set dream attire for her wedding from forever, choose to be the typical Indian bride or the indo-western bride, play around strongly with embroideries, fabrics and colours, says designer Masumi Mewawalla Designer Masumi -Be more Mewawalla for Pink Peacock Couture: experimental, try out different drapes and patterns when we say bridal. Bridal not only has the lehenga choli but the sarees, jackets, gowns, draped gowns and ghaghras etc. You must surely experiment to fi nd your correct look and correct fit and be more open to try something new!! -Keep either the ghaghra or choli little sober, according to my picks in bridal- keep

the lehenga embroidered heavily and go subtle on the choli or the vice versa add a jacket choli on the top and embroider and leave a nice silk lehenga below it. -Opt for outfits which make you look more graceful on your D-day. Go for comfortable fits and just not the the beautifying outfits, having maximum comfort on your day will help you move around and do things in a better manner. -Don’t forget the embroidery detailing in your outfits, pick the most royal yet subtle embroidery Go for zardosi, add some mirror, use the diamonds and Resham in correct proportions. Add some sequence and katana to add the shine to your outfit. -Well in season and the trendy colours for me are surely the blues, wines, purples. But still have a soft pick for the pink which is every girl needs. Pastels are still running favourite for brides. I would suggest to hold on to pastel if you like but surely add the deeper and darker colour to it to complement it. (As told to Heena Grover Menon)

celeb chat

Name: Maitraya Kotecha, Model Three words to describe me: Confident, full of life and hardworking I love my job because: I am very passionate about what I do Best advice I’ve received: Accept life as it comes When buying something, the first thing that catches my eye is: Quality and comfort is what I look for What’s your inner animal?: Cheetah The first thing you notice about an attractive person: Eyes attract me the most The perfect start to a day is: The positive feeling and hope that comes with first rays of the sun Your current fourwheeler: Santro Your fitness regimen: I regularly workout A day without exercising feels incomplete Your food indulgence: I love Dal Bati and Churma Books by your bedside: I am not fond of reading The first site you visit when you fire up your comp: I like going through epapers first thing in the morning Your favourite city: Has to be Pune Ideal holiday: Any place with my friends



Bajirao Mastani was emotionally draining: Deepika



e plays a house husband in Ki and Ka opposite Kareena Kapoor Khan and actor Arjun Kapoor says he completely endorses the idea of a spouse supporting his ambitious wife. "There is nothing wrong being a house husband and I do believe there is something right about it. When you see the fi lm, you will realise why I feel so. I think society has to be acceptive about the any choices the younger generation makes. They have their own reasons and understandings...," Arjun told PTI in an interview. Directed by R Balki of Cheeni Kum fame, the Delhiset relationship saga deals with the fine nuances of a relationship between a house husband and his ambitious wife. Arjun, 30, who is currently shooting for the fi lm in the capital, said the city plays an important role in the unique love story. "The fi lm is based in Delhi. So, it's an important aspect. It will be unique and quirky in typical Balki style. It's today's love story. The fi lm is not just about the song, dance and fun," said the actor. The Tevar star feels romance is one such genre in Bollywood which has been re-invented frequently with time and Bobby, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Jab We Met are the best examples of this changing phase. "Romance has always been a very important genre and it has been reinvented in subtle ways over the period of time. But a lot of people have followed that wave and so it feels repetitive. There have been enough changes that have happened."

Priyanka shows strength with emotion


eary-eyed and jaw clenched, Priyanka Chopra, dressed in a police uniform, cuts a picture of a powerful yet gentle IPS officer in t h e fi rst look of her upcoming drama Jai Gangaajal. The movie is a sequel to fi lmmaker Prakash Jha's 2003 Ajay Devgn-starrer cop drama Gangaajal. Jai Gangaajal, directed and co-produced by Jha, revolves around a female police officer, who takes on some powerful and influential men in her district. The tagline on the poster says, The End Game. Priyanka took to Twitter to thank Jha for casting her. "So proud! Thank you Prakash Jha for giving me Jai Gangaajal! In theatres on March 4, 2016 - over to u guys!" the 32-yearold actress wrote. Jha, 63, thanked fans for liking the poster and praised Priyanka for showing dedication towards the movie.

Hurry up




Till 30th September New Collection Arrival


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Shop no. 3 & 5, aditi samruddhi,,173/4, opp. savtamali mandir, baner road, pune - 45 Tel: 020 - 46770960 • Mob: 09890159997 / 9890315988 • Email :

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Arjun to play a house husband

ctress Deepika Padukone feels her upcoming film Bajirao Mastani was more draining than Ram Leela. In Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Bajirao Mastani, Deepika plays the role of Mastani. "It has been very difficult. It has been the toughest film of my career. I don't like to talk about the effort one has put into, as eventually what is portrayed on screen matters," Deepika told reporters here. "I worked very hard for this film. When we did Ram Leela it was emotionally and physically draining film, but now...Ram Leela feels easy and effortless in comparison to Bajirao Mastani," the 29-year-old actress said. Deepika reveals that besides shooting for long hours, the team had to devote lot of time for the film's preparation. "We shot for 1014 hours, did horse riding, fight lessons, dance rehearsals, dialogue session. Sir (Bhansali) was involved every time," she said. The actress says she was inspired by the Mastani's qualities. "It was very inspiring (role). I wish she was alive today, I wish I could meet her, see her, interact with her. I will be meeting her family soon," Deepika said. "It was not about her beauty, strength, being a lover or nurturer and warrior. I think all women have these qualities in them," she said. Deepika feels the qualities of Mastani are something that every woman has. "We may not be warrior, but we women have survival and fighting instinct. Every woman is a lover and nurturer. All these qualities are there in every woman," she said. Some portions of the film are yet to be shot, which Deepika says will be completed by this month-end.

TGS Life 19/09/2015