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Showing posts from December, 2007

welcome home Urmi

married and changed into a sari now

another angle


Here comes the gorgeous bride

Jai Mala

riding to go get his bride

maulis being tied on the horse by sisters

the groom gets on a white horse

White Sardars

Chura Time

Mehndi Time

Shawn and Leela Kutty

shopping for bangles

amba and mira at the mehndi

Mira selecting bangles

Shot Central

The Happy Parents Geeta and Nayan

Happy Birthday Kabir

Bari Mama Dancing

Aish striking a pose

Geeta and the Groom at the sangeet

The newly weds Amit and Urmila

All photos by Pradip Dalal
To all the gentle readers
the earlier outburst was not for this wedding. This wedding was a beautiful family affair, just how weddings can still be.

Such Ostentation

Such ostentation

I went to another wedding sangeet yesterday, and now I feel I have had it with Punjabi big fat weddings, and this one was really that. Indians pride themselves on their simplicity, thriftiness and lack of consumption, but this is no longer in evidence at a Punjabi wedding.

This sangeet was in a hotel, it did not start until about 10 pm. When it did start, there was a ring ceremony, with video cameras and their attendant bright lights shinning on faces.

The women were all very dressed up; the focus was on the jewellery. Women were wearing 20 carat diamonds encasing their necks. Rubies, sapphires, emeralds dripping off fat women’s, noses and ears. The women were trying to out do each other, when they said hello, they looked first at the neck, judging whether the woman was worthy to talk to before moving on the next neck. The men pretended to talk while looking to the left and right to see if any one more important was nearby.

After the ring ceremony, there were dance numbe…

Tejeshwar Singh


shocking news of the untimely death of Bunny. My heart goes out to Brinda, Aamana and Shonali, the brave wife and daughters and the larger family who are all feeling deep loss of Bunny's larger than life presence.

NEW DELHI: Tejeshwar Singh, publisher, theatre actor and television news reader, whose deep baritone demanded compelling attention from the viewer, died in Mussoorie on Friday night of a sudden heart attack.

He was in his early sixties. Singh founded the Sage Publications (India) in 1981 and nurtured it into a prominent publishing house within a decade.

Son of distinguished diplomat Gurbachan Singh, he was also a famous television newsreader on Doordarshan in the 1980s and early 90s. His voice left a lasting imprint on television viewers of an earlier generation. He was also associated with theatre and cinema.

Sage Publications sources told IANS that Singh had a heart attack while watching television.

Sage gave other established names in the publishing world a run fo…

David Barsamian

I went for an interesting lecture by David Barsamian, the founder of alternative radio at the Attic.
A description of the talk is below. He had just come back from Pakistan and Iran and he spoke about his experiences their. Pakistan he said was filled with protests, using the revolutionary poetry of Faiz Ahmad Faiz, not wanting military dictatorship but wanting democracy. Jamuriyat Zindabad, Amiryat Murdabad. He felt the citizens of Pakistan were aware of the lack of real choice between the lack of conscience Benazir Bhutto and the utterly corrupt Nawaz Sharif. He felt America treated Pakistan like an object, a place where it can set up military bases.

An Islamic Fascism awareness conference had recently been held in the States, where right wing commentators like Ann Coulter, had proclaimed the Muslim world should be occupied and the people converted to Christianity. The council on foreign relations a NY based think tank divides the world in to different spheres, similar to the Monroe d…

An arrow to the heart review

Here is a review of Ken Mcleod's new book in the Huffington Post.

By Ken McLeod
(Trafford Publishing)

Let's say right off: you don't have to be a Buddhist to read this book. In fact, you don't need to be attached to a religion of any kind. But if you're the least bit interested in some of the more profound mysteries of the life of the mind, you'll find a great deal of guidance and inspiration in its pages.

That said, let it be added that as a student of Buddhist teachings myself, I have struggled mightily with The Heart Sutra. It is one of the key texts in the entire canon--the one that serves up this eternally enigmatic gem:

Form is emptiness
Emptiness is form
Emptiness is not other than form
Form is not other than emptiness

You'll be forgiven if your response to these words is a befuddled "Huh?" As McLeod is quick to point out, that's a perfectly normal first reaction. Many students much further along the path than I have occasion to mutter much th…

Rab Rakha Febrile Convultion

Febrile Convulsion

The most scary experience in the world is watching your child having a convulsion, you can just watch in fear as her limbs move out of control, her head jerks and her eyes have a far away look, as though she is a doll performing, a move with a remote.

No soothing helps, the sound that she makes emanates from deep within, a non human sound as though the battery is stuck in the same place, ai, ai, ai, her eyes glaze and her mouth is wet with spit.

The doctors advise holding her on her side and not interfering while this is happening. A part of you is dying watching this happen, the synapses overworking, the brain working rapidly attempting to break the strong hold of the fever. She was fine all day, suddenly without warning she is so faraway, I can’t soothe her with my touch or smother her with my kisses. She is distant; she is a doll with a remote inside of her. She does not smile, she looks faraway.

I catch hold of her and take her in my arms, and run out of the room. …

the problem with Christmas

Alternet has an insightful article on the problem with Christmas. I support this notion that buying green does not make it a better Christmas, we are still consuming stuff we really do not need or can afford.
The problem with Christmas is not the batteries. The problem isn't even really the stuff. The problem with Christmas is that no one much likes it anymore.

If you poll Americans this time of year, far more of them regard the approaching holidays with dread than anticipation. It has long since become too busy, too expensive, too centered around acquiring that which we do not need. In fact, it's the perfect crystallization of the American economy -- the American consumer experience squeezed into a manic week, a week that people find themselves hoping will soon end so that on Jan. 2 they can return to the mere routine hecticity of their lives.

From that central truth, a few propositions follow:

Replacing regular stuff with green stuff isn't getting very close to the root of t…

What women want

A fun article in the Tehelka about what women want, even though Bollywood has tried to update the stereotype, women still seem attracted to dysfunctional men alas!
Wax In Vain

After OSO and Saawariya, the updated male sex symbol is the talk of the town. But NISHA SUSAN’S random chats with women point in a completely different direction

TWO WEEKS ago we saw Ranbir Kapoor draped atop a piano, caressed by a sheer curtain, romping about in a precariously tied towel of equivalent sheerness. The same weekend we saw Shah Rukh Khan cavorting tirelessly in what appeared to be stripper gear. Were the chiselled male bodies of Om Shanti Om and Saawariya, Bollywood’s attempt to actively offer women what they think they want — the overwrought male bodies that are suddenly everywhere? More importantly, did it work? Our random survey indicates that the Diwali weekend’s cinematic offerings of muscular male beauty seemed to have been remarkably uninteresting to women. As one woman put it, “Ranbir is cute …

Martha Nussbaum

Tehelka has an interview with Martha Nussbaum. I think she is currently one of the most seminal philosophers, articulating Indian identity and reality.
‘The IIT mindset feeds into the fascist nature of the Right’

Noted American political philosopher Martha Nussbaum speaks to SHOMA CHAUDHURY about her new book and the roots of Hindutva.

What’s the central premise of your book?
The book’s main thesis is that we should understand the real clash of civilisations as a clash that is internal to all modern democracies. A clash between people who are willing to respect and live with those who are different, and people who anxiously seek domination. Then, agreeing with Gandhi, I say that at a deeper level the real conflict of civilisations is the clash within the individual self as the desire to dominate other people contends against compassion and concern.

What about India makes it susceptible to the hate ideology of the Hindu Right?
When I started the book in 2002, I thought it would be a grim sto…