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October - November 2005


News From Bollywood

by Kishan Sharma

Unprecedented heavy rains did not spare even the tinsel town of Mumbai. A large number of top film, radio, television and stage personalities were stranded in different parts of Mumbai for many hours, and most of them had to walk fairly long distances to reach their homes. Some of the artistes had no option but to check-in into the nearest hotels or house of relatives or friends. Super star Amitabh Bachchan was highly agitated to find out that many prized collections were destroyed when water entered his bungalow. Actor Hritik Roshan was heard to have walked from Mahim to Juhu in chest deep water. Actor Anil Kapoor checked-in at a hotel with his producer brother Boney Kapoor. actor Aamir Khan was stuck in Bandra (East) for many hours. Actor Rishi Kapoor had to stay at his mother’s house in Chembur, whereas his mother went to his Bandra (West) house. Actor Esha Deol and Zayed Khan with director David Dhawan and producer Vashu Bhagnani had to struggle in the dirty waters to walk upto a hotel where they all checked-in. Actress Moushumi Chatterji tried to reach her house on a hand cart since she could not walk through rising water. Actor Atul Agnihotri also had to check-in into a hotel. All shootings and recordings were cancelled for two to five days, and most of the cinemas also remained closed. Even I had to abandon my car in Bandra (East) to reach Andheri (West) on foot.

It is learnt that the British government will honour Aishwarya Rai in November 2005 with an award which is given to individuals of ethnic minority community.

Amitabh Bachchan, Hema Malini, Salman Khan, Rani Mukerji, John Abraham and Om Puri have been signed to act in BR Chopra’s “Babul” directed by his son Ravi Chopra.

Amitabh Bachchan will play Gabbar Singh in ‘Ramgopal Verma Ki sholay’. In fact, Amitabh wanted to play Gabbar Singh in the original ‘Sholay’; but the role went to Amjad Khan, who successfully got all the attention world over. It is yet to be known as to who are the other artistes in the remake of the 1975 blockbuster.

The Government has not yet decided to impose a ban on smoking in films. Though there were indications that the orders to ban smoking on the screen will be implemented with effect from Gandhi Jayanti, Octobe 2, 2005; but the strong oposition from film indiustry has forced the government to rethink over the ban proposal.

Some film personalities were involved in the prohibited drugs case; and the actor Salman Khan once again found himself in trouble because of his telephonic conversation with Aishwarya Rai which is said to have been recorded four years ago when they were very close to each other.

Music Director Ravindra Jain has once again been booked to compose music for Rajshri’s new film to be directed by Sooraj Barjatya.

Singers Pankaj Udhas, Anup Jalota, Rajendra Mehta, Bhupinder, Mitalee, Ahmed Hussain & Mohammed Hussain alongwith some others presented a two-day ghazal festival - “Khazana” in Mumbai in aid of Cancer Patients Aid Association.

Bhajan Samrat Padmashree Purushottam Das Jalota, father of popular singer Anup Jalota celebrated his 80th birthday on a grand scale in Mumbai. He has his students all over the world, and has also established the Jalota Music Academy in USA. Noted classical music singer Padmashree Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan presented his vocal recital before the selected invitees. The senior Jalota was felicitated on the occasion by many distinguished personalities. Anup Jalota, who was performing in the USA with Ghulam Ali and Talat Aziz, flew down to Mumbai specially to attend the function, compered by Kishan Sharma, the India Link International’s Art & Culture Correspondent in Mumbai.

Play back singer Anuradha Paudwal has been declared as a proclaimed offender by the Chief Judicial Magistrate of Amritsar. Harpreet Kaur Randhawa, in a case of violation of the copyright act after she failed to appear before the court despite issuance of non-bailable warrants against her.

Producer-director Ram Gopal Varma is making a film on woman gangster. He has already made film on male gangsters, and now he has chosen actress Antara Mali for his new film to be directed by Lalit Marathe, who had writen the script for Varma’s film “Bhoot”.

Super star of Hindi films, Amitabh Bachchan is playing himself in a Kannada film, “Amrutha Dhaare”. Directed by Nagathihalli Chandrashekhar, the film has Dhyan (also known as Samir) in the lead role.
For the first time, the tall super star will appear with even taller actor Kiran Sharma in his latest movie, in which Kiran plays Amitabh’s son.

Actor-politician Govinda’s family had a miraculous escape when the car in which they were going to Ajmer from Jaipur on a pilgrimage, met with an accident. His secretary Rishabh Jha was killed and the driver was seriously injured. Govinda’s wife Sunita, daughter and son were injured.

A ten year old boy from Bangalore, Kishan, launched a film with a song recording. The film, “C/o Footpath” is based on his own story about the social and economic problems of boys and girls who have been denied their rights. Kishan will direct the film himself. He is the son of music director Srishaila and has acted in 22 Kannada films and TV serials. If he succeeds in making and releasing his film, he will enter the Guinness Book of World Records; which till today has a 13 year American boy Sidney Lang as the youngest film director.

Actress Urmila Matondkar was the grand marshal during the celebrations in the USA recently. She was warmly received by the audience.

Writer-producer-director Saawan Kumar has completed his latest film “Saawan-the Love Season” which stars Salman Khan, Salloni, Kapil, Prem Chopra, Ranjeet and Johny Lever. Aadesh Shrivastava has scored the music.

In a rare case in India, the Anupam Cinema of Ahmedabad has been fined Rs. 25,000 by the civic authorities for failing to provide clean drinking water to its patrons and also for not keeping its premises clean.

Actor Salman Khan earns bad name very frequently; but his good deeds are generally not highlighted. Recently, when he was coming out of the film city in Mumbai after a shoot, he saw some young poor children playing with the rejected rubber tyres. He immediately ordered cycles for them. And it was indeed very touching gesture on his part when on the next day, while he came for the shooting, he was surrounded by some other poor kids and he got a cycle for each one of them too.

The much publicised “Dhoom Bollywood” show was recently cancelled at the last moment in the USA. Most of the artistes were just packing their bags, when they were informed of the cancellation. Many top stars and singers were expected to participate in the shows in different cities.

‘A Tribute to a Legend’ - Kundan Lal Saigal
A three CD set has been released by the Venus Records & Tapes Pvt. Ltd. to pay tribute to the legendary singer-actor K.L. Saigal. The unique feature of the album titled - “A Tribute to a Legend - Kundal Lal Saigal”, is the soulful rendering of KL Saigal hits by a self-trained, hobby singer from the city of Nagpur, Dr. Ravi Wankhede, who is a former Indian Air Force officer and a consultant in Transfusion Medicine, running Jeevan Jyoti Blood Bank at Nagpur. The songs are a pleasure to listen and takes the listeners to nostalgic magical era of Saigal. The music arrangement has been done by Vikas Borkar and Vijay Ladikar, while Mahesh Tiwari has given commentary. Singer Bhakti Vyas joins Dr. Ravi Wankhede in duets. Priced at Rs. 400 only, the album released in the birth centenary year of the great Maestro, has largely been appreciated by the music lovers all over India. Dr. Ravi Wankhede is planning a few live concerts to promote his album through out the world.

The Smiling Astrologer-Musician - Pt. Arvind Gajendragadkar

Nobody believes that he is 78. He is young, not only at heart but also at his activities and more so with his music. Pandit Arvind Gajendragadkar is a well known musician of India who can play two instruments - the flute and sur mandal - at the same time. While his left hand plays the sur mandal, the right hand plays on the flute.

Born on 11th January 1928, Arvind Gajendragadkar did his M.A., alongwith B.Sc, B.T., and B. Mus. He is one such lucky person who got training under the stalwarts like Pt. Panna Lal ghosh, Swami Parvaitkar, Pt. Omkar Nath Thakur and Pt. Murlidhar Shastri. He started as a Science teacher and jumped on the post of Music Professor at the Benaras Hindu University. He joined All India Radio and worked at Dharwad, Patna, Pune, and Nagpur stations as Music Producer, and opted for voluntary retirement in 1978. He is a regular performer in the National Programme of Music, broadcast by All India Radio and Door Darshan. He has performed in Singapore, Malayasia, Bangkok, Hongkong, Japan and several other countries. He has large number of his students all over the world, many of whom broadcast on the radio. He is a big scholar. His articles have been published in many newspapers and magazines. He has written five novels, two story collections, 21 books on music and several books on astrtology and good living. some of his books were released at the hands of top artistes like Bharat Ratna Dr. Lata Mangeshkar, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, and Dr. Prabha Atre. His compositions, rendered by various singers are regularly heard on radio and television in India. He is an accomplished astrologer; and people keep him busy all through the day solving their various problems. He teaches music to Indian and foreign students at Venu-Vandana Institute, gives interesting and informative lectures and demonstations all over India, and also guides people to their bright future. Always smiling, energetic, highly talented, well mannered and multifaceted scholar-artist-astrologer Pandit Arvind Gajendragadkar is an institution in himself. Incidentally, his son, Nikhil has been a regular contributor to India Link International.

Madhushree -Creating new melodious waves
“Kabhi neem Neem Kabhi Shahad Shahad, Kabhi Narma Narma Kabhi Sakhtg Sakht, Mera Piya”, the super hit song from film “YUWA” , pictured on actress Rani Mukherjee surprised many music lovers. The melodious voice was a refreshing one. It made the singer, Madhushreee, a star over night. Not many people know that Madhushree is not new in the music world. She was known as Sujata Bhattacharya earlier, when she won the gold medal in the All Indian Radio’s Music Competition in Classical Music in 1984.She got the National Scholarship in classical music in 1984, 1985 and 1986. She won many awards all over India for her classical, light classical and light music performances. She participated in te International Music Festival in Uzbekistan. She was deputed as Music Teacher in Surinam (South America) by the ICCR. She travelled extensively for concerts and stage shows in Trinidad, USA, Germany and Holland. She decided to try her luck in the Hindi films, and therefore came to Mumbai from Kolkata. Her father Amarendra Nath Bhattacharya, who had initiated her into music at an early age, died recently. But he could see his daughter successfully reaching the top place as a playback singer. Music Director A.R. Rehman has been recordig many songs in her voice. Ravindera Jain, Rajesh Roshan, Bappi Lahiri, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Viju Shah, MM Kreem, Anand-Milind, Himesh Reshamiya, Ram Sampat, Vidya Sagar and many other music direcors have also been recording various songs in Madhushree’s voice. She decided to change her name from Sujata to Madhushree, because there are many singers with the same name. Robby helped her cut some of her music album, which also brought her into lime light. She sings bhajans, ghazals, film songs of all types, thumri, dadra and khayaal with ease, and regularly peerforms on All India Radio and Door Darshan. She is very busy recording songs not only for Hindi fims, but also for other languages, including Tamil. She is also busy with her stage performances all over the world. She has struggled very hard, and now she is tasting and enjoying the fruits of success. Her songs in ‘Aetbaar’, ‘Kuchh Na Kaho’, ‘Kisna’, ‘Kal Ho Na ho’, ‘Swades’, ‘Paheli’ and ‘The Rising’ have topped the charts while songs in the forthcoming films like ‘Rang De Basanti’, ‘Run Away’, ‘Agreement’, ‘Sauda’, and ‘Kasak’ are eagerly awaited. Madhushree truly is a celebration. in pure melody.

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