Thursday, 30 September 2010

‘I've evolved as an actor!'

Hitherto a ‘dream boy’ for the fairer sex and ‘style icon’ for the gentlemen, Prince Mahesh Babu will now be a household name, greeting his fans quite so often. What with the shy, private guy making a public appearance every other day announcing his endorsement deals and promotional events, Mahesh seems no more the unreachable crescent moon amidst the galaxy of stars.

After a tedious wait of three long years, the die-hard fans of Mahesh are exuberant and upbeat over watching their ‘screen idol’ groove to Manisharma’s melody, romance sexy Anuskha and sizzle in action sequences, in his latest flick Khaaleja slated for release on October 7. The Trivikram-Mahesh combo, after the blockbuster hit Athadu, has been driving the attention of all and sundry apart from the industry verticals.

Khaaleja sure will be one of the biggest hits in my career. The whole team is confident of its success irrespective of the hype and hoopla,” Mahesh quoted at the recent launch of UniverCell outlet in Himayatnagar. Now, Mahesh has Dookudu with director Srinu Vaitla that will be soon on the floors.

After Sony launched the film’s music over Internet a while ago, Mahesh’s son Gautam Krishna had launched the music CD at Radio Mirchi FM station. “We thought of keeping this a low key affair yet innovative. The response to the music has been overwhelming. Of all the six songs, Sada Siva… is my fav,” says Mahesh, known for maintaining a low profile all through.

The film has the Prince playing a loud, brash and funny (unlike his earlier roles) taxi driver and Anushka bringing him bad-luck every time she bounces upon him. “My performance in Khaaleja would sure be appreciated. Since the long break has seen the evolution of actor in me. Like earlier, I’ll be choosy about the characters I play. But now on, you will notice a different Mahesh in every performance,” the handsome hunk declares.

Sporting a new hairstyle and elegant look in Khaaleja, the Prince was quite charming off the screen, too. “Mamta Anand did the wonders. Namrata of course lent her hand. Don’t I look stunning,” Mahesh poses a question with a bewitching smile.

Now that his wife Namrata, in an interview, tagged him one of the finest actors even in Bollywood, was she hinting at his prospective entry into the B-town? “Oh no! Now I can’t think of anything beyond Telugu films (he is quite particular about referring to Tollywood as Telugu film industry),” the charming dude humbly replies.

The most active (and attractive) south star on Twitter has signed a two-year contract with Provogue, after the recent Amrutanjan campaign. In fact, Mahesh is endorsing maximum number of products compared to his contemporaries, which in deed speaks in volumes of his fan following and approach in the masses.

“Provogue is a coincidence and has nothing to do with Khaaleja promotion,” he makes the clouds clear. “Their creations are the best in the country and really excite me, which I make sure of before endorsing a product.” The screen-scorcher is as well looking forward to meet his fans through the brand, as was in the case of Thums Up and UniverCell. After films, endorsement is certainly the best means to stay closer to one’s admirers. And, Prince Mahesh Babu has struck the right chord!

Anjaana Anjaani in city

“Oh, I touched the chair he was sitting in…”

“I got the petals of the flowers he tossed in…”

“Yeppie, here’s a bit of the tee he threw…”

“Hurray! I could touch his jacket…”

“OMG! He shook my hand…”

These were a few of the remarks made by the frenzied young girls at Villa Marie College who were on a high when Bollywood star Ranbir Kapoor flanked with actor Priyanka Chopra made a sizzling appearance at the institute, to partake in the ‘Happy Hyderabad’ campaign. The College premises reverberated with ‘We want Ranbir’ and ‘Love you Ranbir’ slogans as the handsome hunk showered flying kisses on the boisterous crowd.

Dressed prettily, the gorgeous girls went crazy at the sight of their heartthrob. They waved to him, cheered him and even jostled to capture the B-town sensation in their cameras. Appealing for peace and harmony in the wake of the Ayodhya verdict on the occasion, the celebs also promoted their latest flick Anjaana Anjaani.

Earlier, the actors inaugurated a signboard at the PVR Cinemas wherein they scribbled their last three wishes. The duo bowled over the fans present at the cinema not just with their style and substance but also their singing skills. “The ‘hatke’ storyline apart, our performances in this romantic comedy would get you glued to the seats,” Ranbir promised.

Despite years of training in acting school, Priyanka said, she learnt a lot from Ranbir who grew up watching his parents rise to the stardom. Though the film’s release coincides with the Ayodya verdict and the release of much-awaited blockbuster of the season, Rajini-starrer Robot, the screen idols expressed no concerns. “Ours is a small yet notable effort when pitched against Robot. The verdict of course, we believe, won’t hamper the jubilant mood of the movie-buffs!”

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Stylish interiors now for a song!

There's a magic in that little word, home; it is a mystic circle that surrounds comforts and virtues never known beyond its hallowed limits. - Robert Southey.

The aphorism is never a passe, irrespective of the revolutionary changes taking place across the globe, every passing day. Even as quick money and erratic lifestyles have their say in the lives of every individual in this day and age, the urbane folks are leaving no stone unturned to transform their 'sweet homes' to 'classy heavens'. After all, there's certainly nothing half as pleasant as coming home after sweating it the whole day!

And for this, all that one need is a taste in adding 'zing' to interiors and exteriors. Worry not! A rap session with the cluster of home decorators and design solutions companies multiplying by the day across the city would offer you complete and comprehensive solutions in this regard, which definitely won't burn a hole in your pockets. Time for a tiny, little curve on your lips!

For Ch Sivaram, adorning the home interiors was more of a dream until he bounced upon an interior designer. "I didn't want to part with more of cash.

Accordingly, the designer gave inputs on wall colors and patterns for each room. His directives on the aspects of lighting, co-lighting, placing of the furniture and et al served more like a final touch to enhancing the environs. My home now communicates," wonders this 30 years old software developer working with a multi-national company.

"Plush homes are no more an asset of those born with a silver spoon in their mouths. It did cost a bomb earlier. However, with the changing times, the common man too has developed passion towards design industry. Now, budget isn't a stumbling block in getting striking interiors and exteriors," wows Tripurana Sumalatha, a 3D animator working with Anim Graphics at Mahendra Hills.

While Sumalatha drafted the three-dimensional presentation of the interiors for their two-bedroom flat (800 sq ft) at Uppal, her better half Srinivas (a graphic designer himself) has picked the required stuff - right from wall paints and furniture to artifacts and lampshades. "The erstwhile 'somber' flat of ours has now got a makeover, all costing around Rs 1 lakh," Sumalatha is all smiles.

Not just homes but a face-lift to workplaces does its bit in spreading positive waves and make staff feel home. Thirty-five-year-old entrepreneur Vamsi Krishna says, "Like home, I believe office too reflects and inspires one's thoughts and ideas. And, decor helped me do wonders at my workplace. Paying attention to the minutest of details like curtains, wall hangings, stationery, doormats, window blinds, wallpapers and worktables has metamorphosed the whole ambiance. Now, working overtime isn't tiresome, neither for me nor my staff." Vamsi seems a content lot!

Needless to say, design industry is all about ideas. The practicality of aesthetically saving space in ordinance with Vaastu while sticking to the basic concept is vital in bringing out the magic of any structure. Above all, meeting the expectations of the clientele besides prioritizing their perspective and sentiments forms a major task for any designer. We believe 'freedom of thought is birth of creativity.

"Understanding colors and patterns and keeping the message simple are quite essential for an architect. Thus, we polish the taste of customers and help enhance their mood or reflect their thoughts in our works though creating an ambiance," chips in Hari Gopal Dutta, founder of ThinkXNtric design solutions at Jubilee Hills.

This one-stop shop for design solutions provides services in concept designing and development based on accuracy, quality, research and reliability. Popular in European countries, the concept of one-stop shop includes departments of design, R&D, execution and administration so as to offer whole services under a roof.

"Be it in the case of designing a house, office, restaurant or a hospital, an ample knowledge of indigenous market blended with global exposure and know-how does lend a hand for designers in keeping the cost low without compromising on quality," quips Pradeep Reddy, an architect with an interior decoration firm in Narayanaguda.

Never late! It's time to work on those shoddy interiors and exteriors, all for a song!

Time to bag pure gold

It's a low risk product and one of the best means of investment; an alternative instrument of saving, it has fair degree of liquidity; a valuable gift for any special occasion, it's an out-of-the-ordinary incentive for employees, too. Above all, it's the only entity women keep close to their hearts...

There you're! The dazzles of gold have been a part of our life for ages now, in a way or the other. Irrespective of it's price shooting up and reaching the skies every passing day. That's the following the glittery yellow metal has got among the populace.

The glittery entity, undoubtedly, helps us secure our future. However, the coin has the other side too - the increasing concern over its purity. And that's where banks come into the picture, our most trusted advisors in investments and savings.

Most of the banks (nationalized and private) these days offer sale of 24 karat 999.9 pure gold coins and ingots with 'Assay' certification from Switzerland and London, in the denominations of 2, 4, 5, 8, 10, 20, 50 and 100 g (in round shape and rectangular bars). And, these have caught the fancy of the common man and investors alike. After all, quality matters!

"Minted at the refineries like PAMP and Castel San Pietro, these coins/ingots have the logo of the respective banks and are available in tamper-proof see-through certicard packs in order to avoid any damage or theft during transit," informs WP Rama Rao, Chief Manager, Andhra Bank, Lakdi-ka-pul.

Competitively charged on the daily prices of international bullion market price of gold and the US dollar, the banks also take into account the VAT, Sales Tax, Stamp Duty and Octroi in deciding upon the value of these gold coins/ingots. "No documents are required to purchase coins amounting to Rs 20,000-50,000; but identity proof is needed for those costing Rs 50,000 and above (non-customers). The price limit and process of payment, nevertheless, differ from each bank," Rama Rao adds.

Apart from nationalized ones like Andhra Bank, SBI, UBI, Bank of Baroda, Syndicate Bank, Corporation Bank and Indian Bank, private players including ICICI, HDFC, IndusInd and Axis are offering sales of gold coins/ingots under various schemes.

"Nowadays, getting unadulterated commodities has become pretty much impossible. Gold is no exception and we can't rely up on jewelers and showrooms all the time. However, banks are really serving the purpose through selling 24 K gold coins and ingots. It really made things easier for me - with regard to investments or getting loans," quotes one Chanduri Kamala, a Telecom employee and customer of a nationalized bank.

Not just the customers but also the outsiders can buy them, with discounts and special offers on bulk purchases. "Some corporates and individuals with a view to gift for occasions or offer as an incentives to staff, usually make bulk purchases, the orders for which need to be placed in advance," informs M Ravindra Babu, Manager, Bank of Baroda, Khairatabad. In this case, one can get logos, initials, emblems or symbols of Gods embossed on the coins/ingots bought at certain banks.

Also, selected banks (like Andhra Bank and Syndicate) offer loans on these coins/ingots like that on jewelry. The per-gram price of gold varies from each bank though. However, the banks don't repurchase the coins. They can be sold to any jeweler.

Be it SyndSona of Syndicate Bank and Swanra Mudra Scheme of Indian Bank or Mudra Gold bars of HDFC and Suvarna Mudra of IndusInd or Mohur Gold Coins/Ingots by Axis Bank... Now that the banks are all batting for 999.9 per cent pure gold, how about ensuring a handsome return over a period of time?

'Mine wasn't an easy win!'

After recording 8 tracks for his upcoming album by Sony BMG, Indian Idol 5 Sreeram Chandra is now busy juggling stage performances, playback singing and perfecting proficiency with a view to become a global celeb

Considering his track record in playback singing, stage/reality shows, was it a cakewalk for Sreeram Chandra Mynampati to win Indian Idol season 5? Well, the hoi polloi doesn't see eye to eye in this regard. It's a mixed yet warm response.

Nonetheless, the blue-eyed boy brushes it off saying, "Hailing from down south and winning the hearts of whole Indians was indeed an onus task. I believe my composure and expertise helped me in this regard." Expressing his gratitude to all Indians for paving way to his victory, Sreeram, however, retorts: "The other contestants had enough experience in stage shows, if not playback singing! It was quite a demanding job and definitely not an easy win!"

It took more than a week for Sreeram to sink in the truth that 'he finally is the Indian Idol 5'. For him, the whole journey was a 'sweet ordeal' - making friends, discovering one's strengths and weaknesses, keeping the competitive spirit up and above all, living up to the expectations of judges and people - that finally paid at the grand finale on Aug 15.

"Remember the blank reaction on my face while receiving the award from Amitabh Bachchan ji? I was speechless, too. I couldn't get out of the mood even during a brief sleep. But now, I'm through. It feels great, one-of-its-kind, top-of-the-world and on-cloud-nine to win the title. In fact, the real journey has begun now," Sreeram says with a glint of pride reflecting in his eyes.

The 24 years old Hyderabadi has already recorded a duet with ace Shreya Ghoshal for a Telugu film, one for Salim Merchant (one of the judges for the season) and chanced up on an opportunity to sing for Yash Raj's project (scheduled in a month).

"I've several shows lined up. But I'm concentrating on honing my skills. My five years of training in Carnatic classical, my knowledge in Hindustani and Western music isn't enough to become an international star, which I urge. So, now is the time for some planning unlike earlier," Sreeram acknowledges. "I want to give my best shot in every deed and be a better singer and person," he quips.

Crooning at a private do (his first performance in the city after winning the title), Sreeram was all praises for the Sony album, set for release in a couple of weeks. "Among the eight songs, I'm in love with the main track that goes like Rehanuma... It was penned by one Pinky and composed by Harpreet. Picturized in beautiful locations of Mumbai, the album is sure to mesmerize you all. Get ready for the magic," he guffaws.

And for all those eyeing the titles of reality singing shows or wanting a niche in playback singing, Sreeram strictly advises to "believe in self and get trained in classical music. Work on your negatives and be positive."

Monday, 6 September 2010

Cultural space for lease for a song!

The Lamakaan in Banjara Hills provides free space for conducting programs in literature, arts, theatre, debate and dialogue, thus offering a platform for artists, activists and thinkers to interact and grow

It's yours. Do what you will with it... boasts a luxurious house in the posh localities of Banjara Hills. Rented out to organize arts and cultural programs for free (!), the Lamkaan in the lane next to CBay building off Road No. 1 is more than a comprehensive space that pays deep respect for grass roots work. Not to be surprised!

Owned by documentary film-maker late M Hassan, the sibling of Urdu writer Padmasree Jilani Bhanu, the place was synonymous with mother for Hassan. "It shared the love and affection of Hassan and his memoirs. Hence, Ashar Farhan (Hassan's nephew) resolved to fulfill his uncle's dreams of making use of the house for good cause," informs Vemana, the manager of Lamakaan.

With the help of friend Biju Mathew, Farhan converted Lamakaan to a cultural space on March 13, thus paying tribute to his uncle. An abode to the homeless, as the name suggests, Lamakaan aims at facilitating free space to organize programs dealing with arts, literature, theatre, debate and dialogue.

The open space has a stage and a screen while the huge hall can accommodate around 150 people at a time. The guest room beside the hall helps the visitors get refreshed. The place has hosted about 35 events including ghazals, student seminars, workshops, expos, plays, documentaries and et al.

"The cafe serving Irani chai, Osmania biscuits and, hot and crispy samosas is the place where ideas are born and creativity sprouts, and ideal for book-reading. Also, we find it the best rendezvous to catch up with or make friends," quotes one Kanika Kathuria, a marketing executive.

A group of curators appointed for two years by the Lamakaan Trust, a non-profit entity, has absolute freedom to explore the space and create events within the limits of sources. This apart, the 'Open Mike Nights' held every second and fourth Thursdays of the month invites anyone to perform, recite or enact in a 20 minutes slot.

"We don't charge for performances. However, they're accessible either for free or through tickets costing a nominal amount," Vemana adds.

Corporate sponsors and commercial sponsorships are not accepted. Neither does the Trust take any margins or cuts from the sale of tickets or artists' works. However, the interested can send cheques addressed to the Lamakaan Trust or donate online through paypal to Lamakaan. Details over or or 9642731329. Email:

His passion knows no barriers

Into designing photo frameworks, Syam Narayana's collection includes original tunes and lyrics of the yesteryear's melodies in various languages apart from rarely found books, films and monographs of renowned personalities

The last three weeks have seen Syam Narayana bonding over innumerable phone calls and exhausting hours on browsing and mailing, day in and day out. "It's because of you guys," this owner of Right Angle photo frameworks shop at Ameerpet subtly points a finger at the media. Being journalists, our job demands it, while the overnight popularity has Syam Narayana give up on his sleep, at times, to consider the requests pouring in via cell phone and e-mail.

It's his leisure pursuit of collecting old songs and books that has garnered attention of many. "I'm not a celeb to get featured. Moreover, a chunk of folks I know own invaluable treasure than that I possess," he humbly turns down my appeal for a rap session; but changed his mind when I didn't give up.

Stockpiling around 20,000 songs from films (Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Hindi, English, Kannada, Bengali, Konkanai and other languages) released in 1920s and '50s... Ah! The very thought is awe-inspiring, isn't it? "I speak, read, write and understand only Telugu though. Nevertheless, love for music has no language barriers," he shrugs.

It all started when Syam Narayana was about 10 years old. "The lullabies by my aunts did influence me. The interest in music gradually developed into passion and then a hobby," he informs. A native of Firangipuram in Guntur district, Syam Narayana had quit the job with Animal Husbandry after he realized it isn't his cup of tea. "Six years of livelihood through meager tasks and I took to photo frameworks. I settled down in the city three years ago. However, the hobby continued."

More than the songs, it's the original tunes and lyrics of these songs that would for sure evoke interest among those obsessed with old melodies. The original track of 'Naa hridayamlo nidurinche cheli...' from ANR and Savitri-starrer Aradhana (1962) goes like 'Amar shopne dekha rajkonna thake...' from Bengali film Shagorika (1956). Wow, it's a ditto version!

The Tamil song, 'Malligai poo jati roja...' sung by Bala Saraswati (1954) in Raja En Kanmani sounds similar to one of the tracks in Spanish film La Violetera (1958). The tune of 'Maa mamayya vachchade...' crooned by Jikki in Mangala Sutram (1946) and that in Down Argentine Way (1940) are inspired from 'Mama Eu Quero...' rendered by Brazilian singer-actress Carmen Miranda in 1930s. And, the list goes on.

"I lost much in the process of digitizing the erstwhile gramophone record files and audio cassettes. Despite these efforts I realized recently, I had no tracks from Gundamma Katha. Don't you think I lag behind from others," he questions.

Going through the audio files (nearly 100) and scanned versions (even the 1844-published 'Count of Monte Cristo' by Alexandre Dumas!) of the works of Jules Verna, Leo Tolstoy, Mark Twain, Lewis Carroll, Jonathan Swift and others is an amazing experience.

The over 500 films including the 1907, 1925 and 1959-released Ben-Hur, stage and radio plays, monographs on singers and music directors like Kundan Lal Saigal, Pankaj Malik, KC Dey, Salil Choudhury and Muthuswamy Dikshitar, and philosophical teachings by Chaganti, Ekkirala, Ushasri and et al takes everyone by surprise.

"I've donated tons of books written by the likes of Bhamidipati, Kodavadanti, Mullapudi, Srisri, Palagummi, etc. Space and money are a serious problem, after all," Syam Narayana rues, surfing data in his computer placed in the storeroom at his shop.

Syam Narayana can be contacted over +91 9849262600.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

An exemplary friendship

The 'Toshino' gang meets evey Sunday noon at Masab Tank, a few members coming all the way from abroad! Cricket and friendship have bound these professionals from all walks of life together for the last 13 years now.

Even as Arjun Singh sets off the euphoric revelry crooning Tere jaisa yaar kaha... kaha aisa yaraana... the rest of the 21 forms chorus. What follows next is a melodious riot, inviting the nosy passersby to peek at the immaculate gathering in the Municipal Corporation of Hyderabad and Sports Coaching Foundation (SCF) sports complex, Masab Tank.

An every-Sunday-show for those visiting the sports complex, it's more than a family affair for the team. For, a few take flights from London and USA to wield bats. Welcome to the Toshino (meaning 'terror' in Japanese) gang where cricket has brought together a galaxy of professionals in the city to be friends - the 'forever' kind.

"It's been 13 years now and we're still counting," wows Satyanarayana Murthy, Manager, Orient Black Swan. It all started in 1997, chips in dermatologist (whose clientele include the Governor too!) Narsimha Rao, "When a chunk of us used to play sports in the nearby school ground only to be taken to task by the colony residents for breaking their window panes and disturbing the tranquility. We then rented out this sports complex where a few more crick lovers joined to launch Toshino."

The gangsters include dermatologists, homeopathic physicians, poets, ghazal singers, IT persons, entrepreneurs, interior decorators and government employees. Aged between 30s and 60s, they take pleasure in their marital bliss and professional commitments. "Would you mind finding a life partner for me," Y Shiva Prasad, spoken English tutor appeals. "He's an eligible bachelor," the blowing wind has a deafening shriek ruffle in my ears.

Just then, the players brawl over a petty thing and the issue settles down sooner. "Ego clashes, win-win situations and tu-tu-mein-mein episodes are all part of the game. But sportsman spirit prevails ultimately. In fact, this helps discover what we've lost in our primes," the Joint Director of Finance Department, A Sudarshan Reddy sports a smile.

Two matches of cricket and volleyball each, a rapid session over beer bottles pursues. "We do celebrate birthdays, promotions and marriage days with families. But, prefer to confine the revelry only to us, since our families love us not being home on Sundays," winks Srinivas Reddy, an advocate.

The 13-year saga of Toshino has inspired the budding players as well, to form teams. "This August 1 being special, we're celebrating our friendship. Hope our children take a cue from us too," they wonder. Yet another Sunday passes by and "the memories keep us rejuvenated for the rest of the week only to look forward to Sunday again," Manoj Kuriakose, a homeopath bids adieu.

Styling the Hyderabadi lass...

One of the stylists from the city with international repute, Anand Kabra's creations are all about cut, color and quality. The designer chews the fat with Hyderabad Journal.

'Seeing beauty even in the dreary...' reads the website of Hyderabadi fashion designer Anand Kabra. An artiste of rare perception, Anand's collections of Indian ethos in international appeal, have philosophy weaved into every creation; distinct and unpredictable, too.

Born in UK, Anand moved to Hyderabad at the age of three. A product of Hyderabad Public School, this runaway medical student was more inclined towards arts since childhood. "I felt like someone guiding me to take up fashion. Still groping for a reason," he wonders.

Having pursued high national diploma from London College of Fashion, Anand's maiden collection was put on display at Hotel Grand Kakatiya in 1999. Ten years into styling only women's clothing, Anand looks forward to styling men only after some research. "No half-hearted attempts, please! In fact, I pick one for me just like that," he reasons.

Rather 'erratic' his working style is, Anand says, "It begins with a thought followed by understanding the period, character or book my collection is inspired from, for a three-four months. I put my best consistently only to realize at the end that I'd have done better!"

A staunch believer in 'no form and definite design', Anand prefers working with natural fibers. He loves playing with solid, pure colors rather pastels because of their 'intensity'. Popular for his trousseau collections, the designer is greedy for accolades and criticism, too. "A lot of fashionistas said they 'feel' it having 'slipped into a Kabra'. But I'm more concerned about critics."
With a wider clientele in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai than that in Hyderabad, Anand is proud representing the City of Nawabs on global platform. "The preferences and awareness of Hyderabadi fashion buyers is amazing. Hailing from a smaller cosmopolitan though, they stand out amongst the crowds, all for good reasons. Moreover, the culture of costumes, still a part of our daily lives, throws open the doors for me to imbibe the old-world charm into contemporary wear."

Not into the number game, Anand cares for learning from his counterparts. After the shows in New York, Paris and Shanghai, he realized that the world is watching India emerge as a fashion hub. "Fashion weeks are more about business than glamour. In India, not all but Lakme (Mumbai) and Wills (Delhi) have the substance. And, I'm trying to tap the Hyderabad markets," he sounds pragmatic.

Now working on the collection to be launched at the Lakme Fashion Week (Mumbai) in September, Anand chose to create his own market powered by a price point. "I can't work within a budget and never understand the mass market," he reveals his shortcoming.

"Ninety per cent of upcoming designers think that chasing lifestyles or rubbing shoulders with biggies would help make it. But, knowing well the craft and showing right aptitude do miracles," he suggests on a departing note.

From film watching to direction

An ardent movie-buff, city-based Ranjith B steps into the shoes of director only to give shape to his ideas on a canvas named 'Cinema'.

Like many, creativity drove him to films. A Hyderabadi and a product of Shadan Engineering College, 24 years old Ranjith went abroad and pursued MS in Computer Sciences, but only to find his calling in the tinsel town. His directorial debut U&I is in the headlines recently having caught the fancy of many for its bold tagline...'Love, Sex, Suicide'.

"It's a 'clean' film dealing with the contemporary issues and been hailed more by parents than the youths," Ranjith is visibly elated. The new star cast - Rohan and Aditi Chowdary - hasn't drawn crowds to the theatres though. "The movie has no big openings and needed more promotion. But, I'm happy I succeeded in passing on the message devoid of skin show and more entertainingly," he states. During his tenure in the US, MMSes on sex scandals involving young girls and actors greeted Ranjith quite often. "One day, I bounced upon the idea to make a film and came home. Here I'm now with U&I."

Well, playing a director with no prior experience certainly requires guts. "Though a movie-buff, I've never been to a film shoot nor pursued any course. Thanks to Mani Ratnam sir. I grew up watching his films and it did help me all through. I thank my producer for trusting me. Hope, I did justice to my role," this young moviemaker flashes his 32!

There are quite a few in the Tollywood who have chosen the path untrodden. And, Ranjith wants to join the league by making some path-breaking films. "My next project unfolds into a college political drama, for which I'm planning to rope in big stars. It subtly reflects the sentiments of students." In pre-production stage, the project would make a mark in the heart of the audiences like RGV's Shiva, Ranjith believes.

Asked about competition, all that he quips, "It's undeniably true that carving a niche in the glam world is quite demanding, but I love challenges." Well, Ranjith is also planning to put his experiences in a booklet on making quality films with low budget. "Keep your brains open and believe in yourself," he tosses in an advice to the latent talents before signing off.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Samantha is in love, madly & deeply!

Actor Samantha Prabhu, who was well-liked for her role 'Jessi' in Ye Maya Chesave, launched the success collection of Aasahadam sales at Kukatpally Kalaniketan...

Dazzled in peach colored fusion wear, as she stepped out of the diamond silver Skoda Laura, hundreds of spectators and a handful of lensmen vied with each other to capture the bewitching beauty in their respectful cameras. Well, we're raving raunchy Samantha Prabhu of Ye Maya Chesave-fame.

Now busy with two films (wherein she plays a key role and not the lead) in her kitty opposite 'icon' Mahesh Babu and 'amazing' NTR (she tags them as), Samantha appears to have been more curious about her career graph. "I want to fall and rise in love like any other 22 years old girl. And, I'd a few crushes, too. The first one in my Class X. Now, don't compel me to reveal the details. It's all in vain. He is still unaware of it!"

Inquired about her dream date or man, the gorgeous lady wears a naughty smile to tease the journos. "In fact, I'm in love right now... madly and deeply with my work, work and work."

A model in her college days, Samantha entered the filmdom fortuitously and is quite overwhelmed with the response evoked amongst the audience to her debut Ye Maya. "I watched Ye Maya in theatre with the audiences and was quite moved with the way they appreciated it. Wow, I never expected this to happen in my life. Touch wood," she yells.

A terrific shopaholic she is, this Chennai-born seductress loves to drape saris. "Nothing on earth can be as feminine as a sari. I'm comfy in jeans and tee, but dress up only to go with the occasion. Hey, I'm girlish and could be reasonably crazy at times, you mind."

An active member on Twitter, Samantha has never been into these things until Ye Maya happened. "It's pretty essential to know what the world thinks about you, particularly in the glam industry. So, I started tweeting and found it great. Thankfully, I receive more compliments from the admirers than criticism. But, I consider the critics' (they're friends in my case) views as well."

Not a gadget-freak though, she bought Blackberry recently only to update her whereabouts, film shoots and emotions on Twitter. "It's addictive but I never see it as a platform to market myself and the films I act in." Certainly, way to go!

Rayalaseema Ruchulu on platter

'A gastronome's delight' - an epicure describes it. 'It adds 'spice' to our life' - the other one tags it. 'The right place for the bon vivant to be in' - a foodie coins. 'Rayalaseema Ruchulu' definitely has more to narrate about its flavors...

The wafting aroma of masala ingredients greets and reminds of grand mom's kitchen, the moment one enters this restaurant at Lakdi-ka-pul.

The handicrafts and paintings silhouetting the shipshape furnishings avow tranquility it offers amidst the daily hustle-bustle. And, the delicacies on platter promise the real 'spice' of Ralayaseema region it doles out.

It's been seven years that Rayalaseema Ruchulu played the 'host perfect' to the city gourmets and is still counting. "Well, the menu has it all to keep us going, since all the ingredients we use are prepared by our chefs. Our objective is to familiarize the tastes of yesteryears with the Hyderabadi foodies," states its manager Jaipal Reddy.

Right from soups and starters to main course and desserts (Chinese too!), the restro dishes out a wide range of cuisine that has the essence of Rayalaseema region. Raagi Sankati, Natu Kodi/Chaapala Pulusu and Talakaya Mamsam have the highest takers, while Jonna Roti and the extra spicy Guntur Chilly Chicken form the best combo. Vegetarians mostly go for Gutti Vankaya/ Aloo Tomato curries and Kaju Fry.

"Priced at Rs 20 to 300 (maximum), the delicacies made of chicken, mutton, prawns, crabs, rabbit, Japanese Quails and fish certainly are appetizing and not heavier on wallets either," wonders Saroja, a government employee.

Located in the center of the city, the Lakdi-ka-pul branch witnesses a huge rush that encompasses government servants, politicos, policemen, local residents, students and those staying in the lodges and hotels nearby.

"Around 20 cooks, including 10 head chefs (all from Rayalaseema), work here to cater to the needs of the food connoisseurs. The take away session is quite busy parceling food to secretaries of the biggies, employees of state secretariat/governor's bungalow and film stars," adds Jaipal.

The two-time Times Food Festival Award winner is on an expansion mode now. "Apart from the Santhinagar branch started seven years ago and the one at Lakdi-ka-pul (now 144-seater) in 2009, one was launched at Ameerpet two months ago. Jubilee Hills will hail the other in a couple of months," says its Managing Director Uttam Reddy

Twin cities gearing up for Bonalu

The normally busy 'X' roads at Langar House wore a festive look on Thursday last. So did the lane leading to Golconda Fort via Chhota Bazaar and the heritage structure itself. The Aashadha maasam has brought in relieving monsoons and irresistible discount sales coupled with an opportunity to rediscover our age-old traditions and customs.

Yes, the Bonalu festival has begun customarily with much fanfare, spreading its charm beyond the boundaries of the state. The ritual, that the Telangana region is renowned for, dates back to more than 400 years - when the Nizams had their fair share in preserving our rich cultural heritage.

Bonalu (meaning prasadam offered to the deity) usually consists of rice, vegetables, honey, jiggery and curd filled in three pots. "Decorated with turmeric/vermillion paste and neem leaves, the pots (clay ones are now being replaced with bronze and silver pots) are topped with a deepam that is offered to the deity after taking out a procession," says K Krishna, one of the members of Central Peace and Welfare Committee at Langar House division.

Draped in color papers and embellished with turmeric/vermillion paste, the thotte (a makeshift bamboo dome) carrying the images of Goddess Jagadambika or Renukamba and Her six sisters welcomes all and sundry. The procession culminating at the Fort (nearly 7 km) is taken out only after pattu vastrams and pooja are offered to the thotte.

"The presiding deity of Jagadamba Mahankali Temple at Golconda Durgam receives the first pooja amongst all the seven siblings. At Golconda Jagadamba Bonalu, pooja is performed in five intervals on Thursdays and Sundays. The sixth pooja (Laskhar Bonalu) is offered at Ujjaini Mahankali Temple in Secunderabad followed by the one at Laldarwaaza Mahankali Bonalu in Old City," informs N Jagadish, Maithri Committee member.

While the teen maar and fierce dance steps of poturajulu (considered the brothers of the Goddesses) keep the spirits high, devotion overflows in every moment during the fiesta.

The concept evolved when many people had lost their lives to communicable diseases, several years ago, during monsoons. "Unaware of the scientific reasons behind their practices, our ancestors (irrespective of caste, religion and creed) believed that the Goddesses were showering health on them. We're just rediscovering the beauty in the rituals and keeping it alive," wonders Laxman, who has been donning the role of Poturaju for 15 years now.

Rafajjahaan, a resident of Moti Darwaza partaking in the festivities for the last 20 years, is quite inspired by the spirit of togetherness that bonalu proclaims. "The festival has been a testimonial to the feel of 'unity' prevalent among us Muslims and Hindus for several years. Both my sons were roped in to the Maithri committee by the city police to extend help in peacefully conducting the carnival.

"The festival has thousands and lakhs of devotees coming down from the nearby places and other states. Hence, we deployed around 400 policemen to ensure safety and security," quips G Sridhar, Inspector of Police, Langar House police station.

"Accommodation and drinking water are being taken care of in view of the huge rush in coming days," informs Padmanabham, Chairman of Golconda Jagadambika Temple committee.

Green Ganeshas in the making

The State Government and NGOs are putting their best efforts to advocate the use of eco-friendly colors and materials in making the idols for Ganesh Chaturdhi...

With Ganesh Chaturdhi round the corner, the twin cities are gearing up for the 11-day carnival that grabs eyeballs for reasons galore. However, 'water pollution' caused during the festivities has been the talk of the town for years now. The government and several

NGOs are, as usual, leaving no stone unturned to promote 'eco-friendly Ganesh'.

Around 23,000 idols would be consecrated this year in the twin cities and the number might shoot up, according to Bhagyanagar Ganesh Utsav Samithi. While the government and Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) are believed to be offering incentives to artists in using natural colors, NGOs like Forum for A Better

Hyderabad and Society for Awareness and Vision on Environment (SAVE) are advocating the use of natural materials like grass, clay and paper instead of plaster of paris and paints in making the idols.

"This year, we are planning to distribute for free some 50,000 eco-friendly (eight-inch for household pooja and five-foot for pandals) idols painted with natural colors, out of which 500 are non- colored clay models. The idols of smaller size are meant for the devotees to take home for the festival while the 500 bigger ones measuring above four feet will be distributed to pandals. Around 15-20 artists from West Bengal are working on these idols at NTR Gardens," informs Vijay Ram, an artist working with the SAVE.

Known for its huge dimensions, the around 45-46 foot Ganesh statue at Khairatabad this time will advocate 'world peace' with the Lord setting out his journey on Hamsavahanam and Pushpaka Vimanam. "Decked up more in natural colors instead of Nerolac Paints (lead-free though), our Ganesh is eco-friendly to a great deal this time," says S Sudarshan, Secretary, Khairatabad Ganesh Utsav Committee.

"We are left with some colors distributed by the government last year. With some more to be disseminated this year, the Ganesh idol is all set to wear a 'green' look. Our website - - keeps informing the public about the daily updates on making of the murat," tells Raj Kumar, Organizing Secretary.

When inquired about the hue and cry over pollution, vice-president of Bhagyanagar Ganesh Utsav Samithi Karodimal Narsingh Puria said, "Neither the paints nor the material used in making the idols are contributing to water pollution anymore. Now the HMDA is taking up the cleanup drive at Hussainsagar and other water bodies immediately after visarjan. Moreover, we are putting forth our best efforts in propagating 'Green Ganesh'. The rest is with the government to enlighten the public."

  • The Pollution Control Board in association with Acharya NG Ranga Agricultural University is organizing a workshop for artistes and Ganesh Utsav Committees on the use of natural colors for the idols.
  • Though the festival is ahead, the APPCB is inactive in taking up the necessary steps.

Looks do matter

When surrounded by glamour, which is the name of the game in segments like hospitality, aviation, FMCG, fashion and entertainment, it's pretty essental for the urbane to look and feel beautiful. Hyderabad Journal gets a touch-up as well...

'Beauty in the flesh will continue to rule the world,' - Florenz Ziegfield.

The aphorism does fit with the Gen-Y, who doesn't hesitate shelling out thousands on 'good looks' to turn heads. And, making most of the situations are salons and parlors in the city, multiplying in numbers by the day.

"The surge in demand for beauty services has the size of industry grow at 15-20 percent annually (a turnover of Rs 2,000 crore) in India this year," informs Ch Anuradha, director, Anoo's International Beauty School (AIBS).

Right from hair coloring, manicure, facials, waxing and body massage to electrolysis, chemical peels, micro derma, weight management treatments and aromatherapy... you just name it, the salons have it.

A cursory glimpse at the parlors in the neighborhood would give an inkling of the ever-growing beauty 'requirement', which was hitherto a choice, of the conscious-self in the recent times. Twenty-eight-year old Sandhya Rani Panigrahi, lecturer in Chemistry at a city college says, "To be the center of attraction is every individual's desire. Since people tend to pay attention to minute of details, it is a 'must' to project oneself the right way."

Not so extravagant though, as she underlines, Sandhya does get a touch-up every now and then. "I've good many followers among students," she winks.

Dr Fathima, a cosmetologist with Not Just Skin Deep Clinic at Banjara Hills quips, "India is a country where beauty ages back to ancient times. However, it caught the fancy of one and all, irrespective of gender and age, only just. After all, looking beautiful is a feel-good factor that helps boost one's confidence levels."

Certainly, chips in Anwar-ur-Rehman, a 37-year-old pilot. "Beauty has its charm spread all over. And, the Hyderabadi men too are unflinchingly going for a 'metro' look."

Not to forget, beauty is directly proportional to the healthy living of individuals. "So staying close to nature is much important. Hence, I study physiology and anatomy of an individual before going for treatment," states Vijayalakshmi, proprietor, Mirrors Spa & Salon at Banjara Hills.

Meanwhile, the foray of corporate and international players has added to the demand. "The industry will require five lakh beauty specialists in the next four years, making beauty a hot pursuit for all," points out Monica Bahl, Head (National Operations), VLCC Institute of Beauty Health and Management.

The sprouting parlors in every nook and cranny of the city testify to the same. "So, please visit a trained beautician," cautions Vijayalakshmi. Point taken!

In order to create better opportunities for the prospective talents, the IGNOU joined hands with the VLCC (has academic link ups with Doncaster College-UK and Cengage Learning-US) recently to offer beauty and nutrition courses in a face-to-face mode. Also, AIBS (affiliated to the City and Guilds, UK) launched a two-year MSc in Cosmetology in collaboration with the JNTU... these, apart from other career-oriented short and long-term courses.

Desperate to give in, seriously!

RJ Shekhar Basha is pretty desperate to bite the dust.The winner of the Best RJ Award consecutively thrice given away by the India Radio Forum feels it's high time to find mighty opponents to give in. He pours out his heart in a freewheeling chat with Hyderabad Journal.

"I'm longing for a tough fight and want to see myself losing to somebody's wit and intellect," radio jockey Shekhar from Big 92.7 FM exclaims on being inquired what he does to retain the top slot as an RJ.

The heartthrob of radio-buffs across the city has a quota at the India Radio Forum that honors the best of radio shows and RJs, every year. "Had I filed my nomination this year, I would have won the Best RJ Award again. But, I'm all elated to sweep the awards for best breakfast show and best promo for four years in a row. Now, I'm greedy for more in these two categories," he laughs.

Does it mean Shekhar Basha has no competitor with 'mettle'?! He diplomatically makes it clear, "RJing isn't all about blabbering. It isn't about sounding 'sweet' over radio either, but providing infotainment to the listeners, which I strictly follow." There are a handful of fellow radio jockeys that Shekhar admires, who according to him would make it big only if hone their skills.

The software engineer-RJ-VJ is recently seen donning the role of a tutor. "Yes, I deliver a guest lecture for free on radio jockeying at LAMBS Institute, set up by a UK firm, for those pursuing MBA in Media," he says with a glint of pride.

Any plans to set up an institute all by himself, then? Shekhar rules out the idea saying, "There are just five radio stations in Hyderabad and hardly any scope for all the students landing a job. No business plans, please!"

Might be he is overburdened playing multi-role, especially that of a teacher! "Well, there's a good teacher in me. And, I'm on cloud nine taking some time out to live my passion. I give enough time to my admirers who have been my support all through," he hastens to add.

Friday, 9 July 2010

Themes are ‘in’!

Ushering in the fun-savvy Hyderabadis to a whole new world of entertainment, theme-based shops and bistros are fast becoming the in-thing...
A cluster of theme-based outlets are sprouting across the twin cities, providing breather to the ‘bored’ populace. Hitherto confined to movies, hotels, parks, ice-cream parlors and bakeries, the entertainment industry of late has its arms wide opened, ushering the public in a whole new world of futuristic interactive elements like gaming zones, music cafes, coffee shops, restros, multiplexes, etc… all aimed at creating a niche for themselves and move away from the ‘routine’ options!
The popular ones being Hard Rock Café, Zapak Gameplex, Xtreme Sports Bar, SVM Mall, The Chocolate Room, Little Italy, Aroma’s of China and La Café, to name a few.
When the world is sitting pretty on the edge of technology, nothing could be a better ‘entertaining’ alternative to gaming.Offering an impression for a lifetime, the SVM Mall (SVM@36) at Jubilee Hills and Zapak Gameplex (retail outlets at Sainikpuri and Marredpally) are found to be the favorite destinations for gamers in the city. “The two are the right places for the gaming freaks to congregate. Also perfect for national and international tournaments, these spaces are convenient to drop in and loot mazaa. This and lot more, without costing us a bomb,” wonders KV Aditya, a gaming enthusiast.
A live sports event while getting high on chilled beer is definitely heart stopping. How about engrossing with sports action while grooving to some foot-tapping music? Step in to Xtreme Sports Bar or Hall of Fame sports grill, which promise to unveil the ‘gaming freak’ in you. “Games and sports here are blended with stand up comedy shows and DJ nites that transport the visitors to a different world,” informs Ramya, the spokesperson of Xtreme Sports Bar.
An eat-out in the weekend is incomplete without a visit to Mainland China and Bowl O China, Little Italy at Kharkhana and Care Europa at Tar Bund (Italian food), Kairali at Gachibowli and Utupura at Banjara Hills (Kerala), Alfresco Outdoor Cuisine at Banjara Hills (Mangolian), Deori at Gachinowli (Mediterranean) and 4 Seasons at Tolichowki (Lebanese food).
“Right from décor and dressing to cutlery and background music, our restro reflects China in its very soul… winning us the Best Chinese Restaurant award this year at the Times Food Festival. More than the food, customers drop in here to feel the exclusive environs we dish out and get acquainted with the Chinese culture,” says Mayank Prasad, City Head, Aromas of China at City Center.
Probably, a reason why many of the hotels often organize events and rather open restros like the SYN at Taj Deccan (known for Sushis and cocktails), replicating a theme to draw in folks!

Coffee table meetings
A lot can happen over coffee. Hence, teens and the great majority are seen teeming at CCD, Barista, La Café, Café Rico, Fcafe & Lounge, Fruitway Coffe Shop, Café Europa and et al… drafting their future plans, discussing ventures or hanging around with buddies.  “I prefer meeting my clientele only at coffee shops since they dish out privacy apart from the best of coffees to sip on,” coins Radha Rani, a young entrepreneur.

The add-on to the list of these outlets is The Chocolate Room at Madhapur, Somajiguda, Banjara Hills, Jubilee Hills and Srinagar Colony, which has many a sweet tooth go crazy for the assorted chocolate delicacies. “The very mention of the name of the store tickles my taste buds. The chocolate theme is obvious in the furnishings and interiors. I just love being here,” quips Dominic Savio Joseph, a chocolate aficionado.
Well, people prefer to loosen up after a day’s hard work. And every individual has his/her own way of unwinding the self. “However, since the Gen-Y these days are looking for variety to spice up their already droning lives, there is always scope for ‘something new’ to grab their attention. Hence, the businessmen are hunting for ‘themes’ to make a quick buck,” reasons Aditya Madala, an information specialist. Certainly, themes are here to stay!!!

Ash scores ‘zero’ for Raavan

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan may be still hot favorite of many a movie-buffs, but Hyderabadi moviemaker Mani Shankar gives a ‘zero’ for her performance in the much-hyped Raavan

A 100 for Junior Bachchan, 50 for Vikram and a perfect ‘zero’ for Aishwarya Rai! Well, we are not referring to the dimensions of these silver screen stars but the numbers scored by the lead actors of Raavan, in the school of Bollywood director Mani Shankar.

Mani Ratnam’s much-hyped flick didn’t live up to the expectations of critics. Neither did it go down well with the movie-buffs. However, a cross-section of audiences was seen raving over Ash who sizzled with her captivating performance in the film, thus drawing in more masses to the theatres, despite its ‘flop’ talk.

But, Hyderabadi director Mani Shankar, known for his off-beat films like Muqbir and 16th December, has taken everyone by surprise with his statement – “Ash is the only drawback of Raavan, while Abhi was outstanding as ‘Beera’. He gave his best shot and was much convincing when compared to Vikram!”

But Mani sir, you’re at least expected to give her pass marks if not a distinction, Ash being the beautiful better-half of one of your good friends in the industry! Coming to the other point, it’s undeniably true that only the Tamil version Raavanan (where Vikram played the lead) is drawing crowds to cinemas and making cash registers ringing when pitched against its Telugu and Hindi counterparts.

However, your verdict that ‘Mr. Perfectionist of South’ has delivered just a so-so performance (?) has left many a movie-buff and mediamen speechless (you direly need to watch Aparichit that won Vikram rave reviews from critics across the country!).

This is not all, readers! Mani was all praises for director Mani Ratnam for directing such a master piece, which he compared to the 1980 American release directed by Martin

Scorsese, Raging Bull that met the same fate as Raavan initially. “Raging Bull, after 10 years, was considered one of the top 100 best films ever made in the world. So would be the case with Raavan. Actually, the Indian audience have not upgraded to Mani Ratnam’s thinking process. Well, this is my point of view as a director!”

Well, our comments are reserved on this issue, Mr. Mani Shankar!

Saina turns bride!

In a role reversal of sorts, badminton sensation Saina Nehwal made heads turn as she sashayed down the ramp in heavy bridal outfits. “I’m a girl now, hope you liked it,” Saina giggled as she was chewing the fat with Hyderabad Journal. Read on...

Quite nervous and uncomfortable she appeared sashaying down the ramp in pink ‘velvet’ ghagra-choli and cuddling a red dupatta. But, world no.3 badminton star Saina Nehwal made it big on the final day of Hyderabad Fashion Week last week. Kudos to Gopichand for giving a green light on her branding at a fashion show; his decision was well-liked by all and the sundry.

The around-4.75 kg bridal wear that Saina showed off did draw accolades for its intricacy in designing and embellishments, but it was the sports star herself than any that won standing ovation for her daring judgment on being a show-stopper. “Designer Pallavi Jaipur made me just feel confident. It was amazing walking the ramp.”

 Now that she scored a ‘perfect 10’ for her debut as a bride on ramp, it was time to inquire about her tying a knot. “Let me play some more time for India. Moreover, I guess hardly anybody recognized me in this outfit, since they’re used to see me in jeans, trousers and tees. But, I’m enjoying these moments,” she sports a naughty smile.

 Asked what she feels about slipping into the shoes of models, Saina states, “Woah! I was tensed having been a fish out of water amongst them, but managed it somehow. Well, I do put on make-up for photo shoots, but was never into this whole lot of girly stuff. But, I’m a girl now. Hope you liked it!”

 Having hit the headlines recently for her astonishing performance, Saina appears in no hurry to scale to the top slot. “It is true that I’ve no competitors in India, but I’ve to face a tough fight outside. Also, now that Indians are recognizing the sport, there is a bright future for the players.”

 About her soaring brand value, Saina quips, “It’s all because of my performance. But I would never forget my roots because of the name and fame I get. I’m focused on my goals,” she sounds confident.

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Celina's T-town dreams

"Wear your attitude since it makes you," model, actress and Femina Miss India Universe 2001 Celina Jaitley tosses in a suggestion for the Gen-N models, her blue eyes and infectious smile spilling over enough of it. Decked up prettily in a bridal outfit designed by Neeta Lulla, the screen scorcher floored the onlookers at the grand finale of Hyderabad Fashion Week on Friday.

"Today's youth is lacking in right attitude, thus leaving them fall behind in the rat race," she hastens to add when inquired why India is failing to sweep beauty pageants in the recent past.

Having hit the ramp after a long time, the svelte beauty is apparently all elated working with her dream designer Neeta Lulla, "because she is someone who is always looked up to and her work is admired. I'm really privileged branding her collection here. And, Hyderabad really has beautiful people. Hope it hogs the limelight soon."

Pat comes the reply when asked about her visit to the City of Nawabs yet again. "What I like most about Hyderabad is how clean and green the city is. Wish the other cities too take a cue from Hyderabad in maintaining themselves!"

Busy as usual with a few Bollywood and Mollywood projects in her kitty, the actress recently did a Kannada film and is desperately looking forward to tease the movie-buffs in Telugu and Tamil industries. "My Telugu debut was a disappointment, but this time, it won't be," she chirps.

Talk about competition and she quips, "The film industry is all about beautiful people. If we start competing, there's no fun anymore. Moreover, we all have our own identities and character; so there's hardly any scope for competition," she makes a point before signing off.