Tag Archives: Mumbai

Remembering Shashi Kapoor on his 85th birth anniversary; not just a wonderful actor but human also

Shashi Kapoor, one of the most handsome faces of Indian cinema who has left an indelible mark with his acting and charm turns 85 on Saturday (today). Not just the Bollywood, but Shashi Kapoor earned immense love and adulation of the West with his numerous English films. Though the actor had predominantly attracted popularity with his cult Bollywood commercial films but he had also acted in a few serious and parallel films (to be discussed later in the story).

Kapoors had a strong affiliation with Kolkata and West Bengal ever since the days his father, Prithwiraj Kapoor, the doyen of Kapoor Khandan (as fondly called while referring to this iconic family also called the first cine family), began his career with the iconic New Theatres. In the due course of time, Shashi Kapoor, developed a fondness for Bengali cinema. Shashi Kappor shared a wonderful relationship with Great Master Satyajit Ray who had also penned a couple of scripts of Ivory films.


Kapoors since decades had been entertaining the masses – The journey began with Prithwiraj Kapoor fondly called ‘Papa Kapoor’ who passed on the legacy onto his sons Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor and Shashi Kapoor. They had passed on the legacy of ‘Kapoor Khandan’ subsequently to the next generation of Kapoors.


I recall first watching Shashi Kapoor on TV as we in our childhood was not much exposed to films like today’s generation but we had a great companion (if I may call so) and that was the television which was the ultimate platform for entertainment and many of us I am sure will agree that our schooling to cinema (whatever we have learnt or developed within) had began with this iconic “idiot box’ in early 80’s. Watching this actor on Chitrahaar, Sunday cinema and so on…I recall hearing him during the Film Festival when he had shared so many personal memories about his family, brothers and the cine industry. It was during one such interview Shashi Kapoor had said for him, the ultimate romantic hero was elder brother Shammi Kapoor with his westernized looks and acting. He had also said that “now watching my acting on screen, I feel ashamed as they look so childish” a confession from a real actor who was whimsical of his characters and perhaps this why Shashi Kapoor did not stay obsessed with the cult Commercial Cinema but acted in many parallel cinema and few experimental cinema (a wave that took cinema by its stride during early 70’s and late 80’s).


Shashi Kapoor and English films especially in British and American films, under the iconic Merchant Ivory productions run by Ismail Merchant and James Ivory that had been his second family as their association had grown stronger. Shashi Kapoor acted in numerous films under the banner like The Householder (1963), Shakespeare Wallah (1965) (opposite his sister-in-law Felicity Kendal), Bombay Talkie (1970) and Heat and Dust (1982) in which he co-starred with his wife Jennifer Kendal, The Deceivers (1988) and Side Streets (1998). Apart from Ivory productions, he had acted in other British and American films like ‘Matter Of Innocence’ (1967)), ‘Siddhartha’ (1972), ‘Sammy and Rosie Get Laid’ (1987), and Muhafiz (1994). James Ivory directed Kapoor in the first Merchant Ivory production The Householder, then in Shakespeare-Wallah, Bombay Talkie and Heat and Dust while Ismail Merchant directed him in In Custody (1993).


It was during late 50’s Shashi Kapoor met English actress Jennifer Kendal in then Calcutta now Kolkata. in 1956 while both were working for their respective theatre groups. Shashi was both assistant stage manager as well as an actor for his father’s theatre group, Prithvi Theatre. Geoffrey Kendal’s Shakespearean group was also present at the same time in Calcutta and Jennifer was Geoffrey’s daughter. They fell in love and after facing initial opposition from the Kendals got married to Jenifer in July 1958. Both of them had acted in a number of films together. In 1984, Jenifer Kendal died due to cancer. Shashi Kapoor loved Jenifer immensely and did not re-marry.


Both of them were blessed with three children – Kunal Kapoor (who had acted in Vijeta), Karan Kapoor (he too had acted in a few films like Loha and Saltanat but he is most remember for his modelling with Bombay Dying in 80’s) and daughter Sanjna (she too has acted in a few films like Hero Hiralal. She took charge of the Prithvi Theatre which was established on 5 November 1978 in Mumbai. In the recent years, we have Karishma (Lolo) and Karina (Bebo), daughters of Randhir Kapoor (Raj Kapoor’s son) and Ranbir Kapoor, son of another Kapoor superstar Late Rishi Kapoor rising to the top of popularity in Bollywood. Ranbir unlike his father, who had predominantly acted in Bollywood flicks have already acted in numerous serious and good cinema.


Being a true actor he showed guts and courage to criticize the typical Hindi cinema which had been showing things that had nothing to do with reality rather many impractical and abnormal things. It was this quest for good cinema Shashi Kapoor acted in films like – ‘Muhafiz’ (1994), ‘In Custody’ (1993), ‘Junoon’ (1978), ‘Utsav’ (1984) to name a few. Also he had produced many of these. He also produced 36 Chowringhee Lane (1981) directed by Aparna Sen. His wife Jenifer Kendal had done a wonderful acting in this film which revolves around a lonely Anglo lady residing in Kolkata who teaches conversation English in a reputed convent school in the city and subsequently gets cheated by her two ex-students whom she had trusted immensely. However, Aparna Sen bagged National Award for the film but Jenifer did not receive any award which had made him upset and he had shared his feelings in one of his interview on Doordarshan.

Shashi Kapoor had produced and directed a fantasy film titled Ajooba which was a Indo-Russian project and starred his frequent co-star Amitabh Bachchan and nephew Rishi Kapoor in the lead. The film however could not make money on the box-office.


It was this fondness for Shashi Kapoor, Great Master Satyajit Ray had taken him in Satyajit Ray Presents (directed by Sandip Ray for Doordarshan in 1985), “Kissa Kathmandu Ka” which was based on his Feluda adventure story – “Joto Kelenkari Kathmandu Te” and Shashi Kapoor played Feluda. As per the details of Feluda, Ray had always sketched him as a fitness freak and always slim and agile but Shashi Kapoor had put on weight and looked bulky. Still, Ray had casted him as Feluda in his production. This explains the relationship Shashi Kapoor shared with the Satyajit Ray.


He was not keeping well since long and had bid adieu to films in late 90’s with Side Streets being his last film. On 20 July 2012, Shashi Kapoor underwent a cataract surgery at Kokilaben Hospital in Mumbai. Shashi Kapoor was admitted in Kokilaben Hospital on December 3, 2017 reportedly for chest infection. On December 4, 2017, he breathed his last at around 5:30 pm. The famous lines from his film ‘Kala Parthar’ (1979), ‘ek rasta hai zindagi… jo tham gaye to kuch nahin…’ will be the most befitting lines to pay him tributes…

Nonsense Talk News pays its respects to this great actor and a wonderful man…

Uddhav fails to protect Balasaheb Thackeray’s legacy, loses ‘bow and arrow’ to Shinde

Few years Shiv Sena Supremo Balasaheb Thackeray said the party will perish once he is dead. He openly on a television interview had said, he as a dictator and it requires a dictator to maintain decipline within the party. Friday’s developments has once again his farsightedness. This is why he is ‘the Balasaheb Thackeray’, you may not like or admire him but cannot ignore him.

Shiv Sena’s iconic symbol ‘bow and arrow’ goes to Eknath Shinde faction. Indeed, a shame for Uddhav Thackeray who not only failed to protect his father Balasaheb Thackeray’s legacy from splitting into two faction (his own and Shinde faction), but now failed to retain the symbol and the name ‘Shiv Sena’ too. This comes at a crucial time Assembly Elections are to take place in Maharashtra.

On Friday, Election Commission of India (ECI) in a landmark verdict said that the party name “Shiv Sena” and the party symbol “bow and arrow” will be given to the Eknath Shinde faction.

Minutes after the ECI verdict, Uddhav was seen in tears but he and his arrogance is largely responsible behind this development which was evident. This has also come as a big jolt for Aditya Thackeray (Uddhav’s son) who was being looked upon as the parallel Chief Minister in the state and was enjoying undue advantages in the state. His association with the Bollywood has already been exposed after the Sushant Singh Rajput’s mysterious death.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) Chief Sharad Pawar immediately after the verdict said the loss of the “bow and arrow” symbol and the name will not affect Uddhav Thackeray faction. The fact is not only this will have a strong impact on popularity of the party but has put the traditional Shiv Sainiks (members of Shiv Sena) into shame as the legacy of their founder leader has shifted to a different house from its own family that too under the leadership of son Uddhav.

Uddhav has announced his decision to move the Supreme Court against the ECI verdict. The question is does Uddhav has a moral face to even shout out at the ECI or counter its verdict as he had lost the battle or rather protecting the legacy of Shiv Sena the day party was split into two factions and now losing the smybol and name has actually shown the mirror to Uddhav and the defacto party Supremo Aditya.

However, the entire incident has once again spruced up the controvercial question if Raj Thackeray would have been a better option had Uddhav left the throne when Raj decided to part with Thackeray legacy and float his own party, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) in 2006.

Vikram Gokhale no more, actors yet to learn a lot from him; read more

Vikram Gokhale, a name that had simply mesmerized the cine lovers for over four-decades. he made his debut into cinema with Amitabh Bachchan starrer Parwana (1971). His balanced acting and subtle dialogue representation attracted each and everybody. Though, Vikarm Gokhale created a niche for himself with the Marathi stage but subsequently made his strong presence in the Hindi filmdom having numerous big banners to his credit. During 80s with the advent of tele-serials on Doordarshan, he became a household name, yet he created a special place for himself among his admirers. Personally, I simply fell in love with his acting ever since I saw him. I remember watching him for the first time in a Marathi film on Doordarshan in the regional film telecast on Sundays. However, his acting in Amol Palekar’s ‘kasturi’ was simply awesome.

In 2010, Gokhale received the National Award for Best Actor for his work in the Marathi film Anumati. He also forayed into direction with the Marathi film Aaghaat. Known for balanced acting, Gokhale was a director’s actor and would fit in any character or shade. Predominantly an actor who played positive shades but had also done negative characters.

Vikram Gokhale, who worked in numerous Hindi films including including Amitabh Bachchan’s Agneepath and Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, starring Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. His career spanning over a period of over 40 years, he also starred in several television serials.

Gokhale starred in films like Mission Mangal, Hichki, Aiyaari, Bang Bang!, De Dana Dan and Bhool Bhulaiyaa, among others in the recent years. He was last seen in the Marathi film ‘Godavari. He was seen in Nikamma, alongside Shilpa Shetty and Abhimanyu Dassani earlier this year.

His condition deteriorated since Friday late night. His wife Vrushali said, “He slipped into coma yesterday afternoon and post that, he has not responded to touch. He is on ventilator. Doctors will decide tomorrow morning what to do, depending on whether he’s improving, sinking or still not responding. He improved a bit but slipped again. He has had a host of issues, like in heart and kidney. At the moment, he has had a multi-organ failure.”   

Vikarm Gokhale is no more but he will be alive through his work. The social media has been abuzz ever since the news of his death has been flashed.

26/11 Terror Attack: Nation remembers martyrs, solemn prayers for the dead

26/11 or Mumbai Attack that rocked Mumbai 14 years ago on this day brings scary, alarming, horrifying memories to our mind. Over 10 terrorists from Pakistan had invaded India through the waterways in Gujarat. They were well trained, well equipped to make devastation in Mumbai. Perhaps, more devastation was in the offing had our brave men in the uniform did not take control of the situation, many of them had to sacrifice their lives.

On Saturday today, entire country is paying tributes to the brave men in uniform on the solemn occasion of 26/11 Mumbai Attack. Special programmes were organised at the martyrs’ memorial at Mumbai where Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari and Chief Minister Eknath Shinde paid floral tributes to the martyrs who laid down their lives on this day 14 years ago. Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid his tributes to the martyrs during an event organised on the occasion of Constitution Day at the Supreme Court (SC). PM Modi recalled the sacrifices of the these brave men. A total of 175 people died, including nine attackers, and more than 300 were wounded. Also, Minister for External Affairs, Dr S Jaishankar remembered the martyrs.

Mumbai Attack – A glance

Ten members of terror outfit, Lashkar-e-Taiba, had invaded the Indian sea line on the Gujarat coast line. They had chock out a full proof plan of Mumbai terror attack. For the next three days (Wednesday 26 November and lasted until Saturday 29 November 2008). Mumbai sat on the verge of terrorist attack as any moment anything could have happened. The terrorists held the city hostage for three days.

Where did the attacks take place:

There were eight terror attacks almost back to back in South Mumbai:
Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST), the Taj Palace & Tower, the Leopold Cafe, the Oberoi Trident, the Cama Hospital, the Nariman House, St. Xavier’s College and the Metro cinema. There was also an explosion at Mazgaon, the port area of Mumbai and in a taxi at Vile Parle.  The Mumbai Police had secure all the sites except for the Taj Hotel early by the morning of November 28. Entire electronic media was outside the Taj Hotel reporting each and every development.

The situation was almost under control except few places like Taj and Chabad House. Finally, Central government sent National security Guards (NSG). The NSG commandoes carried out the Operation Black Tornado to flush out the remaining attackers. The only terrorist was holed up at the Taj and killed. The only terrorist who survived was Ajmal Kasab who confessed about the entire planning and that the mastermind of the 26/11 was Lashkar terror mastermind Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi. Kasab was later executed. However, in this entire terror activity, once again India’s long claim that Pakistan was infusing fringe element inside its country turned out to be true. India had been telling this to world that Pakistan has been running terror camps, giving training to terrorists and even masterminding proxy war across Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).

The Leopold Cafe, a popular restaurant and bar on Colaba Causeway in South Mumbai, was one of the first sites to be attacked.

Let’s take a glance at the sacrifices of men in the uniform:

During the entire terror attack Mumbai Police, Indian Army, National Security Guards (NSG) commandoes played on their lives to make city and people safe and secure.

At the Cama Hospital, the terrorists intended to kill helpless patients but the hospital staff locked all of the patient wards. Mumbai Anti-Terrorist Squad led by police chief Hemant Karkare rthe CST and left in pursuit of Kasab and Khan. Kasab and Khan opened fire on the vehicle in a lane next to the hospital, and received return fire in response. Karkare, Vijay Salaskar, Ashok Kamte and Tukaram Omble lost their lives.

Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan of NSG was fatally shot during the rescue of Commando Sunil Yadav. Yadav, was hit in the leg by a bullet during the rescue operations at Taj. The NSG airdropped its commandoes in the Nariman House. During the first day, 9 hostages were rescued from the first floor. The following day, the house was stormed by NSG commandos fast-roping from helicopters onto the roof, covered by snipers positioned in nearby buildings.

A total of 175 people died, including nine attackers, and more than 300 were wounded.

Goodbye! Tabassum, today’s TV anchors have lot to learn from her

Tabassum, rather ‘Baby Tabassum’ to be precise is no more. She was 78. Death came in Mumbai on Saturday late evening. She began her film career as Baby Tabassum in 1947 with ‘Nargis’, ‘Mera Suhag’, and ‘majhdhar’. As a child artiste, she acted in movies such as Jogan (1950), Deedar (1951) and Baiju Bawra (1952). Later on, she featured in films such as Talash (1969), Heer Raanjha (1970), Johny Mera Naam (1970), and Tere Mere Sapne (1971).

Tabassum was better known as ‘Baby Tabassum’ as she played childhood roles in numerous films and attracted the attention of people.

Many (especially the new generation) may not be familiar with her name but those who are a generation older and before would immediately recall her as the bubbly young lady who took interviews of celebrity from the entertainment industry predominantly Hindi filmdom. Her interview with pop sensation also called queen of pop, Nazia Hassan was massive hit as she knew how to open up the shy Nazia who had by then created history in India with her popular numbers like ‘aap jaise koi’ from film Qurbani and album ‘Disco Diwanee’ (with brother Zoheb Hassan).

Young generation or GenNext may be going gaga over talk-shows by actor Simi Garewal and filmmaker Karan Johar, but Tabassum much before them created a niche for herself. She had an unique style of asking questions.

Draped in a sari with a flower tucked in her hair, the ever-smiling actor presented her lively and endearing interactions with film personalities on Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan programme on Doordarshan from 1972 to 1993.

Tabassum died at a hospital on Friday evening.

Amitabh Bachchan turns 80. A glace down memory lane at his charisma, career & nostalgia

This is a personal to the man who like all human-beings has both negative and positive sides of his personality. Well, in all perspective, he is the Superstar and would remain the ultimate in the Bollywood post 70s as none could overpower his charisma. His admirers call him by numerous names – ‘Star of the Millennium’, ‘Shahenshah of acting’, ‘Big B’, or as people in people in Bengal call him ‘guru’. Undoubtedly, the superstar, and he is none other than Amitabh Bachchan. The actor turns 80 on Tuesday (today).

During the late 70s, and 80s, people used to emulate the style statements from haircut to dress and even his mannerism. It was normal to watch young boys trying to ape his gait or style of gazing. Not to mention mimicking his voice and rhetoric of popular dialogues from his films.

For his fans, 1982, was indeed a very bad year. Amitabh Bachchan fought with death after being badly injured in his intestine during the shooting of Mammohan Desia blockbuster, ‘Coolie’. The actor who is well known for trying difficult stunts out of sheer love for adventure was wrongly punched in the stomach by the villain in the film Puneet Issar. His intestine got ruptured and he was admitted to Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai where he was clinically dead.

Amitabh Bachchan like others had a ups and downs in his life and career. It was due to financial problems he took to television and began compering for Kaun Banega Carorpati (KBC) that became a massive hit within no time and once again his style and cult was appreciated by all. People sat glued tor their television set to watch the show. For the Superstar, a lot many things had changed drastically after the success of KBC. Bachchan, who once even drifted apart from public interest or cause promotional films or documentaries, was seen almost endorsing anything and everything on the commercial platform.

In terms of selecting projects for films too changed immensely especially after the massive success of ‘Baghwan’ where he played the role of a father who faced neglect and insult from his three sons, all well settled in their lives. It’s about how the father teaches the sons a lesson and make them understand how it feels if parents are left alone or ignored at the fag end of their lives, when they need their children the most. Bachchan had sang songs in his voice after decades in the film ‘Baghwan’. After this Bachchan started playing character actor’s roles and did not hesitate to play father’s role of Akshay Kumar and many young actors. However, his films ‘Chini Kam’ with Taboo, ‘Paa’, ‘Pink’, ‘Pikoo’ to name a few were critically acclaimed from cine lovers and film critics. ‘Nishabd’ opposite 17-year old Jia Khan attracted both negetive and positive reactions especially for his bold scenes with Jia Khan in the film.

Summing up a mammoth personality like Amitabh Bachchan is not easy in few paragraphs. Those of us who have grown up in the era when Amitabh Bachchan was an icon who influenced many of us, if not the man in real for some but his screen image of being a saviour or the cult ‘angry young man’ image worked as an inspiration and influence.

Once again wishing Amitabh Bachchan a very Happy Birthday. I being an ardent admirer of his used to send him letters, cards and received replies along with autographed photographs part of collection. I have shared a few photographs from my scrapbook or collection.

I shall try to key-in a story on different aspects from his life, cine career, charisma, and his glamour.

Ganesh Chaturthi begins, first look of Lalbaugcha Raja

‘Ganapati Bappa Mourya…’ all over as the 10-day long Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayak Chaturthi begins from today (Wednesday). With that the festive season will start rolling. Navaratri, Durga Puja, Deepawali, Guru Nanak’s birthday or Prakash Parv to follow…will culminate with Christmas.

Mumbai seems to be back on track as people across the city are excited and throng various Puja pandals. Mumbai is holding Ganesh Chaturthi at the usual mammoth level after a gap of two-years due to COVID pandemic. All the Ganesha Puja pandals have been decked up. Those who will be observing the Vinayak Chaturthi for one, three,vand five days have also organised puja as per rituals at their respective homes.

In Mumbai, the biggest attraction offcourse remains the oldest and most popular Lalbaugcha Raja Ganesh pandal. People in large numbers will throng the pandal in the next nine days that would include eminent names across political, film, and other fraternity.

On Monday, the Lalbaugcha Raja Ganesh Mandali had unveiled the first look of Lord Ganesha. The organisers shared a small video alongwith photographs.