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October - November 2006


News From Bollywood

by Kishan Sharma

Music Director-Singer Himesh Reshammiya might have done wonders in foreign countries and some parts of India, but it is a fact that large number of people in India do not consider him a singer at all. Recently, a journalist asked singer Asha Bhosle if she likes Himesh Reshammiya, and the singer in turn asked the journalist, “who is that?” It is learnt that Himesh is charging up to Rs. 50 lakh per programme. It is also learnt that on a recent world tour, he took dozens of his relatives and friends which put the organizers in discomfort.

Karan Johar’s ‘Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna’ has found a place in the Margaret Herrick Library, better known as the Oscar Library.

Dada Saheb Phalke Award winner, Padma Vibhushan Hrishikesh Mukherjee died at the age of 84. He made films like Abhimaan, Baawarchi, Mili, Gol Maal, Chupke Chupke, Anari, Anuradha, Anupama, Ashirwad and Anand.

Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle may soon be shifting from the apartments they have been occupying on the first floor of Prabhu Kunj on Peddar Road in Mumbai since the last forty years. Both sisters have booked spacious apartments in the residential towers, Casa Grande, coming up in Central Mumbai.

Singer Sonu Nigam is shifting into a sprawling 4 storey bungalow at Versova in Andheri (West), Mumbai.

Producer Bunty Walia and actress Suman Ranganath got married to each other in a civil ceremony in Mumbai. It is the second marriage for both.

Ronnie Screwvala, CEO of UTV Motion Pictures has announced an investment of US $ 37 million and a series of co-production deals with leading Hollywood studios.

Parkash Chopra, wife of Dr. B.R. Chopra and mother of Ravi Chopra died in Mumbai. She had written stories of two B.R. Films, ‘Dahleej’ and ‘Pati Patni Aur Woh’.

During a petty argument, a private security guard employed at Shah Rukh Khan’s bungalow, “Mannat”, shot dead his colleague.

Bipasha Basu accused two organizers of the India Day parade in Edison, New Jersey, of molesting her. Bipasha herself told the gathering that she was traveling with two organizers from New York in a limousine for the event, when she was molested. However, later Bipasha clarified that she was not molested, but was not treated well.

Screen villain Ranjeet and his wife were sentenced to simple imprisonment for 6 months on the charges of cheating. However, they were released on bail to enable them to go in appeal.

The non-singers are becoming singers these days. To join the band in recent times are Akshay Kumar, Sanjay Dutt, Salman Khan, Rekha, and Shah Rukh Khan.

Actress Nandita Das has divorced the second time round. She had married ad-man Soumya Sen after her first divorce; but she could not succeed second time also.

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) honoured film maker Yash Chopra by offering him a lifetime membership, making him the first and only Indian film maker to have received such tribute.

Ex-superstar Rajesh Khanna is known for his mood swings. Recently at the launch of an entertainment company, he was seen behaving extremely rudely with everyone around.

Composer Shravan Rathod of Nadeem-Shravan team, has turned producer. His first film under the banner of Shravan Films International will be “Kash, Aap Hote”. Shravan’s sons Sanjeev and Darshan will provide music for the film.

Rishi Kapoor and Suniel Shetty have just finished shooting for British-Asian comedy, “Don’t Stop Dreaming”. The film is being directed by Aditya Raj Kapoor, who is the son of actor Shammi Kapoor.

Actress Ameesha Patel created a scene at the Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport. She shouted at the airlines staff and security staff and talked roughly with other passengers. It is learnt that Ameesha was travelling to USA and wanted upgradation for herself and her friend. When the airlines staff did not upgrade her, she started shouting that she was a frequent flier and she deserved the upgradation. She is reported to have threatened the staff quoting her relations with the Civil Aviation Minister Mr. Praful Patel.

Pakistani actress Meera has once again come to Mumbai to try her luck. She has also said that she would like to marry someone from the Bollywood.

Jagmohan Mundhra is already on his next film. It is a bio-pic based on the life of a Muslim cop. Mundhra has spoken to Amitabh Bachchan to play the lead role in “Shoot On Sight”. Michael Caine will play the Police Commissioner, and the brilliant British actress Kristin Scott Thomas will play Amitabh’s wife.It is learnt that both Kristin and Michael Caine are enormously excited about working with Amitabh Bachchan, but Amitabh Bachchan is yet to accept the offer.

Actor Ajay Devgan might play Ram in Raj Kumar Santoshi’s dream project “Ramayana”.

Aishwarya Rai’s father Krishnaraj Rai was rushed to the hospital with severe stomach pain and was operated for gangrene in intestines.

The Shahnai Wizard, Bharat Ratna Ustad Bismillah Khan died In Varanasi. He was scheduled to perform at the India Gate in Delhi in a special live concert, which got postponed twice.

Actor Amir Khan has bought the house in Panchgani where he got married to Kiran Rao in December 2005. It is learnt that Amir has bought the property for Rs. 7 crores.

It is learnt that Amir Khan has been signed by Mani Ratnam for his film “Lajjo”, which will go on the floors by December end.

It is said that the entire role of actor Riteish Deshmukh, son of Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh was chopped off the film ‘Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna’, at the last moment.


Brought up in the rich tradition of Indian classical music, Padmaja, a graduate in Microbiology, opted for a career in music. She moulded her God gifted golden voice with total dedication and hard work. Today, as an extremely versatile singer, she sings both Hindustani Classical (Khayal, Thumri, Tappa etc.) and the light popular variety (Ghazal, Geet, Bhajan etc.) with poise and grace. Padmaja belongs to a family of artistes. She was trained by Padma Vibhushan Pandit Jasraj, Padma Vibhushan Pandit Ram Narayan and the great music director Pandit Hridaynath Mangeshkar. Padmaja is a TOP grade artist of All India Radio and Door Darshan. She received the S.D. Burman Award in 1980 , and Ideal Citizen Award in 1985. In 1988, she got the Miya Tansen Award and the Bharat Nirman Award was also given to her in 1988. In 2000, she was selected for the Manik Verma Award. She was decorated with the title of Padmashri by the President of India in 2001. Though she had brought out her three albums, she became a household name after she recorded poems of Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. Padmaja has performed all over India and also in UK, USA, Canada, UAE and Singapore. Her programmes include live rendering of memorable classics of Hindi films from 1950 to 1970 in "Tere Sur Aur Mere Geet", and concerts of Ghazals, Bhajans and Geet. In addition, she sings classical compositions also. Her husband Sunil Joglekar is an Engineer with the Reliance Energy in Mumbai and extends his full support to Padmaja.


Popular music director Khayyam is busy these days. He has already recorded all songs for his two forthcoming films, one of which – "Yatra – The Journey" was shown at the 30th Montreal World Film Festival. The film will be released in October in India. Mohammed Zahoor Khayyam Hashmi, popularly known as Khayyam was felicitated by many organizations during this year. He was also declared the "Music Director of the Millennium" by the Chief Minister of Punjab, who had specially come to Mumbai with his cabinet colleagues to felicitate Khayyam. The Mumbai Academy of Moving Image (MAMI) also felicitated Khayyam for his outstanding contribution. Khayyam and his singer wife Jagjit Kaur also met the Indian Prime Minister Dr. Man Mohan Singh and his wife at New Delhi and presented a copy of the book published on Khayyam’s life and work. Khayyam was also felicitated by the Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association (IMPPA) recently. He attended as Chief Guest, some musical programmes dedicated to him and presented by doctors and other people at Ahmedabad and Vadodara, where he was interviewed on the stage by compere Kishan Sharma.


Actor Priyanka Chopra’s father, Dr. Ashok Chopra is not only a well known medical practitioner, and social worker; but he is a well trained singer too. He sings with emotions and is gifted with a powerful melodious voice. He has been singing for good cause and at social gatherings. He has come out with his latest album entitled, "Har Har Shankar", which contains eight devotional songs on Lord Shiva. Dr. Ashok Chopra is supported by his singer brother Pawan Chopra. The album has seven duets sung by both brothers and one solo bhajan rendered by Dr. Ashok Chopra. Some traditional devotional songs are sung by the two Chopra brothers, while other bhajans are written by Shri Narendra Maharaj and Rakhi Chaturvedi. Pt. Sukhdev Chaturvedi and Dr. Ashok Chopra have composed the bhajans for the album brought out by Super Cassettes Industries Ltd., popularly known as "T" series.

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