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Rahul Kohli - Pic 1 (Image Courtesy - Dale Bhagwagar Media Group)

Rahul Kohli impresses SRK with his six-pack abs

Newcomer Rahul Kohli who plays a brief role in director Farah Khan’s Happy New Year was pleasantly surprised when he received a word of praise from none other than megastar Shah Rukh Khan.

“I’ve always been in awe and admiration of SRK and his movies and had never imagined I’d get a chance to interact with him or work under his banner. So when I got this offer for a little role in Happy New Year, I didn’t look at the length of my role but just said yes to it,” he quips.

While shooting for HNY, Farah coaxed Rahul to show his six pack abs to Shah Rukh who had earlier flaunted a similar pack for the superhit song Dard-e-Disco in the gritty lady’s movie Om Shanti Om. SRK praised Rahul which put him on cloud nine. “His appreciation means so much for a newcomer like me,” he adds.

Rahul hails from Australia and has studied acting at the Victorian College of Arts at University of Melbourne and refined his acting skills at the Barry John Acting Studio in India.

He will soon be seen in a lead role in Puneet Issar’s Indo-British crossover film Born To Be King. “It’s a challenging character and I am extremely grateful to Puneet who has put tremendous faith in my capabilities. I feel blessed to have makers like Farah and Puneet in my life,” beams the debutante.

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The Official Trailer of Noah is LIVE on YouTube- http://bit.ly/NoahOfficialTrailer

Directed by Darren Aronofsky, the film stars Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkin and Emma Watson.

The Biblical Noah suffers visions of an apocalyptic deluge and takes measures to protect his family from the coming flood

Plot: “Noah” is a close adaptation of the Biblical story of Noah’s Ark. In a world ravaged by human sin, Noah is given a divine mission: to build an Ark to save creation from the coming flood.

Noah Official Trailer courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

Release Date: 28 March 2014

For more information:
https://www.facebook.com/ParamountPic…
https://twitter.com/ParamountPicsIN

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STUDENTS WORKING AGAINST TOBACCO WITH DAISY SHAH, FOR A BETTER TOMORROW!

Stop Tobacco, Live More!

Students of EMDI Institute of Media and Communication have undertaken a Corporate Social Responsibility called SWAT (Students Working Against Tobacco), to help spread awareness regarding the adverse effects of consuming tobacco. To this effect the students of EMDI along with Daisy Shah (of Jai Ho fame) organized an anti-tobacco awareness rock concert, ‘Rockatronica’, the only smoke free concert in Mumbai, which was held at Bandra Fort Amphitheatre.

Supporting the initiative Daisy Shah said “EMDI students are doing a fantastic job by spreading awareness about the usage of tobacco. I strongly believe health is wealth and so, I am here to support this cause. I lost my father due to his habit of smoking and I want to encourage people especially youngsters to quit smoking, this is not a cool habit, and I would never kiss a person who smokes. Moreover, even Salman Khan has given up smoking. ”

Through Rockatronica, the students of EMDI brought together a crowd of youngsters who pledged to say no to tobacco. The evening was a rocking success with performances by bands like Zedde and Howie and the Backing Band. To bring in a change to the evening, the kids of Salaam Bombay in support of the cause put up a skit.

To add to this, Priya Sharma Sheikh, General Manager of EMDI Institute of Media and Communication said: “The SWAT initiative by the students of EMDI is only growing bigger by the year. This year, the students reached out to close to 2000 people, majority of which, were youngsters in schools across Mumbai, educating them in a fun way to never take to tobacco.”

SWAT is in its 11th year currently and what started off as just a mere initiative now has the entire city of Mumbai listening to what they have to say. Other than the rock concert, the students of EMDI also organized a treasure hunt ‘Finding Rio’ and also visited schools across the city to teach them about the ill effects of consuming tobacco.

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Younigstan on Boogie Woogie

It was an adrenaline pumping episode on Sony TV’s popular dance reality show Boogie Woogie as young and talented actors Jackky Bhagnani and Neha Sharma made an appearance on the show to promote their upcoming film ‘Youngistan’.

Both the actors were seen in high spirits as they grooved on the stage with the talented contestants. Jackky mesmerized everyone with a scintillating performance on the song Boom Boom. The duo were seen completely surprised by the showcase of talent on the show.

Watch Jackky Bhganani and Neha Sharma, this Saturday, 22nd February 2014 at 8:30 pm only on Sony Entertainment Television.

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Yeh Dhanda Chori Ka Hai – GUNDAY – http://youtu.be/3-7TtSMyEXs

Wohi Banega Rajesh Khanna – GUNDAY- http://youtu.be/ROVM-uAWViI

Main Tujhe Cheer Ke Rakh Doonga – GUNDAY – http://youtu.be/nT4Q6u_w648

Calcutta’s Lover Boys – GUNDAY– GUNDAY – http://youtu.be/0bp-y6Umv80

Bomb Fatke Aur Faad Ke Chala Gaya – GUNDAY- http://youtu.be/PEx5z8Z7MB8

You can also embed these videos from yrf YouTube channel – http://www.youtube.com/yrf

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Sudha Desi Hard Kaur

British Indian rapper and hip hop singer; playback singer and actress in Bollywood. She is often credited as first female Indian rapper brought up in UK she has what it takes to mark her apart from the crowd…yes, you all guessed it right, Hard Kaur.

But when it comes to the choice of food that’s most close to her heart, the hip hop singer likes ‘desi’ food over others, she replied, ‘It is the sarso ka saag by my maasi (mother’s sister) and makki ki roti by my naani (grandmother). When I came back to India after 8 years from England it was difficult for me with the food I was having here. One day maasi brought me this meal from her home and I was all set here. I still cherish that.’

Apart from home food Indian cuisines, Hard Kaur also enjoys a lot of Jamaican food and French cuisines.

Hard Kaur’s upcoming projects are Atul Agnihotri’s production ‘O Teri,’ sung a song in the film ‘Youngistan’, along will all this she has even rapped in one of the item song in the film ‘Desi Kattey’ in which Kailash Kher is the music director.

When asked about what new she will be doing in 2014, she replied, ‘There are lots of projects I am working on, along with that I want to give chance to new talent to work with me, just like Shankar Mahadevan gave be the chance earlier. There is a lot of unexplored talent in our country.’

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MyAVN brings the “Next Big Thing” in car entertainment

Targets to sell 10,0000 units by December 2014 through 40 distributors and over 300 dealers of myAVN

Plans to tie-up with global car manufacturers for approving the product as a genuine Accessory

Mumbai,17th February,2014: MyAVN Journey poised to be the next big thing in car entertainment will soon enthrall car lovers in India. The state-of-the-art device which comes in 2 din size and a touch enabled LCD screen can be easily installed in most of the vehicles on Indian road without tampering the wiring system of the car. MyAVN Journey is targeted at the mid end car users and those who aspire to use ipods, iphones, browse through Radio/FM/AM. This product provides an option of connecting an external device like Game Player or Karoke to your system and is also designed to support picture output to additional monitors connected in the rear of the car. This inventive device comes with all the inherent features that is normally available in a high end car and is moderately priced at Rs. 26990 onwards with 24 months warranty.

Mr. Pankaj Banka, Director AVN INC said, “MyAVN Journey is the solution for all those who are looking for a comfortable drive with clear music, live navigation and safe Bluetooth option. We have succinctly termed it as “EXPLORE, EXPERIENCE, ENJOY. You can explore the country with Live Navigation, Experience the hi-tech features and last but definitely not the least Enjoy the Sound”. Speaking about the growth of the car infotainment market, he said, “The Indian market is one of the largest in the world for car infotainment as the automobile industry here is one of the most rapidly growing industry and happens to be the ninth largest in the world. The car infotainment industry is valued at Rs 500 Crores onwards and with this launch MyAVN aims to be a part of this industry in a big way”.

To add to the wish list of any customer, MyAVN Journey also has the option of Rear Camera Input. This exceptional feature has the ability to make parking/reversing the car a hassle free process by giving a live display on the LCD screen along with audio video in/out option. Many Cars have audio controls on the steering which allows them to adjust the volume of the sound as well as change tracks & songs. Our system support this factory supplied option directly without any modification. The system also has advanced equalizer settings which allow the listener to adjust the various frequencies of sound suiting to his own ear as some like to hear clear voice, some wat to have loud beats and so on. MyAVN also comes with the latest map software thus eliminating the risk of getting lost while traveling.

ABOUT AVN INC :-AVN INC is a Kolkata based company engaged in Entertainment & Navigation Solutions for Cars. Starting from Entertainment systems in form of car head units, the company also has products like Rear Seat Entertainment systems & Personal Navigation Devices catering to all forms of markets. The company has its own team of marketing and R&D professionals who bring the product as per the market needs. The company with its sister concern has been in the field of Automobiles since 1980 and has a vast experience in the industry. They have All India Service Network & Service Centers to ensure hassle free service to customers. Customer can choose to buy a product in Kashmir but can avail service in Kanyakumari also. The company is in the process of launching an online sales market to reach out to a larger group of customers.

Regards,

Anil V.Agre.

Sr.Media Relations Executive
Blue Lotus Communications Pvt. Ltd

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Deepika Padukone is known for her professional conduct and all her directors and producers have always had good things to say about her.

She is extremely punctual and pushes herself till her uttermost capacity.

She is known to have medicines and continue shooting even when she is under the weather. Infact last week itself she worked for 30 hours straight.

After shooting for Happy New Year for 16 odd hours, Deepika rushed for her dance performance at an award function. Not only did she perform, she also did a thorough rehearsal with the team before that.

However the young actress had a sudden bout of ill health over the weekend (Saturday)

Deepika was shooting till wee hours on Friday and almost fainted.

She woke up running high temperature on Saturday and felt extremely weak. A doctor was rushed home who advised her strict bed rest.

Deepika who is a workoholic would usually skip his advice, take medication and head straight to the studio but this time around, she was physically drained

She had a hectic day ahead with a magazine shoot and brand commitment to keep…. However she very weak and hence had no option but to stay home and rest.

Spokesperson of Deepika confirms “Deepika health has taken a toll. The doctor has strictly advised her complete rest for couple of days.”

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Designers Masaba Gupta and Nitya Arora store launch in Kalaghoda

Ace designer Masaba Gupta, popularly known for her designer label Masaba, and award winning designer Nitya Arora unveiled their joint store at Kalaghoda, Mumbai.

Masaba, who has designed outfits for Bollywood personalities like Sonam Kapoor, Jacqueline Fernendez, to name a few, and who is known for her unusual printed fabrics and designs, said, “We have picked out an eclectic mix of pieces for the store in our signature prints specially designed for the South Bombay crowd. I can’t wait to launch my standalone store very soon in Calcutta.” Some of the accolades to this dynamic designer are ‘Most talented Designer Award – PETA (India) 2013 and Loreal Femina Awards 2012 – ‘Best Emerging Designer’.

Nitya, known for her label Valliyan, that creates a line of unconventional accessory designs, has been the winner of the Grazia Young Designers Award 2012 and Elle Magazine award 2013 for the best jewellery label.

Besides Lakme Fashion week one can easily spot Nitya’s designs on celebrities like Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif to name a few. . Magazines like Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, Elle, and Grazia have extensively covered her work. She also creates esoteric jewellery, bespoke handbags and custom made headgear.

Nitya said, “I always wanted my own shop in Bombay and had been looking for a space in kala ghoda for a while. Since it is the art district and each piece of accessory is like a work of art has been handcrafted and the materials used are of the finest quality.Im excited.”

Celebrities like Tisca Chopra, Shazhan Padamsee, Shaheen Abbas, Priya Kataria Puri, Purna Jagannathan and VJ Ramona lent support and made their presence felt at the event.

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IAA Reveals Categories for 2nd edition of IAA Leadership Awards

~ Awards celebrate the excellence in 21 Categories across 12 verticals including auto, banking, insurance, Telecom and FMCG among others ~

Mumbai, February 16, 2014: The International Advertising Association’s (IAA) India chapter today revealed the categories for the second edition of the IAA leadership awards. Presented by India’s leading Hindi General Entertainment Channel COLORS, these awards celebrate the outstanding contribution made by marketing, advertising and media professionals by honouring them on a common platform. After a successful first edition of the IAA Leadership Awards held last year, this year, the Awards will expand its scope to recognize excellence across 21 Categories namely:

IAA Categories:

1. Marketer of the Year – Banking

2. Marketer of the Year – Insurance

3. Marketer of the Year – Auto: 2 Wheeler

4. Marketer of the Year – Auto: Passenger Vehicles

5. Marketer of the Year – Mobile Services

6. Marketer of the Year – Mobile Devices

7. Marketer of the Year – FMCG: Personal Care, Laundry and Toiletries

8. Marketer of the Year – FMCG: Food & Beverages

9. Marketer of the Year – FMCG: Consumer Durables

10. Marketer of the Year – Home Improvement

11. Marketer of the Year – Household Products

12. Marketer of the Year – Ecommerce

13. Media Agency Head of the Year

14. Creative Agency Head of the Year

15. CEO of the Year

16. Media Person of the Year

17. TV Anchor of the Year

18. Editor of the Year

19. Hall of Fame

20. Brand Ambassador of the Year – Male

21. Brand Ambassador of the Year – Female

Announcing these categories Srinivasan Swamy, President IAA India and VP-Development, IAA Asia Pacific, and Chairman, R K SWAMY BBDO commented “After the great response we received for the first edition of the IAA Leadership Awards, we have made some marginal changes in categories this year to take into account some feedback received. The final winners are being determined now on a number of product and service categories and of course some Awards for senior practitioners. The IAA Leadership Awards is our endeavour to recognize and salute these outstanding talent which has made impactful contributions in the market space and the companies and brands they led.”

To ensure the authenticity and credibility of the awards and maintain the highest level of transparency at all stages, IAA had a task force which looked at various performance criteria in every category under consideration, like revenue/market share growth, marketing initiatives undertaken, innovative schemes, launches, advertising spends etc. to shortlist the nominees. Nielsen (India) Private Limited was engaged thereafter to have the nominees voted upon by senior marketers from the same industry to pick the final winner. Ernst & Young LLP will look at the process to satisfy itself of its fairness and will officially tabulate the results.

The IAA Leadership Awards, this year, are scheduled to be held on 1st March 2014 at Grand Hyatt, Mumbai. Honourable Union Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Sri Manish Tewari will grace the occasion as the Chief Guest. The awards night will be attended by the crème de la crème of the marketing, advertising and media fraternity to see some of their leaders carry home coveted trophies.

About IAA

The International Advertising Association is the world’s only globally-focused integrated advertising trade association with membership representing Advertisers. Agencies and the Media. The IAA is comprised of Corporate Members, Organizational Members, Educational Affiliates, as well as 56 Chapters with individual members and young professionals from 76 countries including the top 10 economies in the world. lAA is 75 years old and is Headquartered in New York. Membership to the Indian Chapter of IAA is by invitation only and IAA has very senior marketing, advertising and media professionals as it members. Recently they also admitted Young Professionals in a new class of membership to attract young people to join this industry body.

About COLORS

‘COLORS’ is Viacom18’s flagship brand in the entertainment space in India. A combination of ’emotions’ and ‘variety’, COLORS launched on 21st July 2008 offers an entire spectrum of emotions to its viewers. From Fiction shows to Format shows to Reality shows to Blockbuster Movies – the basket contains all ‘Jasbaat Ke Rang’. ‘COLORS’ is dedicated to promoting ‘Cohesive viewing’, through programmes like Sanskaar – Dharohar Apnon Ki, Sasural Simar Ka, Balika Vadhu – Kacchi Umar Ke Pakke Rishtey, Madhubala…Ek Ishq Ek Junoon, Beintehaa, Rangrasiya, Uttaran, Bani – Ishq Da Kalma, Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, India’s Got Talent, Comedy Nights With Kapil, 24, Bigg Boss, Khatron Ke Khiladi and Mission Sapne amongst others.

About Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd

Viacom 18 Media Pvt. Ltd. is a 50/50 joint venture operation in India between Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B, world’s leading entertainment content company, comprising brands like BET, MTV Networks and Paramount Pictures) (www.viacom.com) and the Network18 (www.network18online.com) Group, the group operates news channels – CNBC-TV18, CNBC Awaaz, CNBC-TV18 Prime HD, CNN-IBN, IBN7 and IBN-Lokmat (a Marathi regional news channel in partnership with the Lokmat group).The joint venture includes leading brands across television, film and digital media to build one of India’s leading multimedia entertainment power house. Viacom 18 Media Pvt. Ltd. includes the vibrant youth brand – MTV (www.mtvindia.com), the fastest growing kids cluster – Nick (www.nickindia.com), Nick Jr, Nick Teen & Sonic, India’s premier International Entertainment channel – Vh1, India’s only English Entertainment Comedy Channel – Comedy Central, India’s only linear film production & distribution banner – Viacom18 Motion Pictures, COLORS (www.colorstv.in) one of India’s leading Hindi General Entertainment channel. This apart, Viacom18 also runs Viacom’s consumer products business in India and also a brand solutions offering – Integrated Network Solutions (INS)

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Bollywood Star Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Temptation Reloaded’ Tour Partners with Malaysia Airlines

February 17, 2014, New Delhi: Malaysia Airlines, the national carrier of Malaysia, is the official airline partner for Shah Rukh Khan’s Temptation Reloaded Live Tour in Malaysia. The concert, scheduled for 15 February 2014, will be held at Stadium Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur with leading names from Bollywood and is also supported by Tourism Malaysia as part of the Visit Malaysia Year 2014 campaign.

As part of this tour, leading Bollywood actors like Madhuri Dixit-Nene, Rani Mukherji and popular singers Arijit Singh, YoYo Honey Singh and Meiyang Chang flew with the official carrier, Malaysia Airlines MH195 for this much awaited mega event.

Speaking on the occasion Mr. Azahar Hamid, Regional Vice-President, South Asia, Malaysia Airlines, said, “We are very excited to be a part of making the King of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan and other celebrities tour in Malaysia a memorable one. Datuk Khan is a super star in both the countries and we couldn’t be happier to be a part of this tour. This will undoubtedly help us highlight Malaysia’s a great travel destination and promote our service and network connectivity to the Indian sub-continent.”

In an interview Mr.Shah Rukh Khan expressed his delight at travelling with Malaysia Airlines and shared his wonderful experience of flying through the new terminal in Mumbai and the excellent on-board service that he enjoyed with the airline, especially the satay.

Malaysia Airlines is recognized for its award-winning five-star services. Guests are treated to the most seamless travel experience blended with an unmatched in-flight Malaysian hospitality. Malaysia Airlines offers modern facilities to its customers that include elegantly designed cabins and a wide selection of on-board entertainment.

About Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines (www.malaysiaairlines.com) is the national carrier of Malaysia and one of Asia’s largest, flying around 47,000 passengers daily to some 60 destinations worldwide across 4 continents. The distinctive Malaysia Airlines brand is an extension of the special culture of warmth and friendliness unique to Malaysians. This inimitable Malaysian sense of graciousness is branded as “Malaysian Hospitality” and symbolized by the acronym MH which is also the airline’s flight code. Malaysia Airlines operates flights from its home base, Kuala Lumpur International Airport, and offers great connectivity across Malaysia and other Asian destinations. 5-star carrier, Malaysia Airlines connects to six Indian cities – Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Kochi. It operates 66 weekly non-stop flights between India and hub Kuala Lumpur, connecting seamlessly to key Asia Pacific destinations.

Malaysia Airlines became a part of oneworld® in 2013, which brings together 13 of the world’s biggest and best names in the airline industry and 30 affiliate airlines serving more than 10,000 daily departures. Through this global alliance Malaysia Airlines offers the best connectivity with seamless journeys to almost 900 destinations across 150 countries and access to over 550 airport lounges worldwide.

Travelers can enjoy add on benefits with Enrich, the frequent flyer programme of Malaysia Airlines. Enrich miles can be earned through credit card spending, while renting a car, shopping, indulging in recreational activities with Malaysia Airlines lifestyle partners, and much more. Enrich Miles can be redeemed for exclusive benefits and privileges like excess baggage payment and purchasing Temptations in-flight items as well as for award flights on Malaysia Airlines and oneworld® member airlines and their affiliates.

Best Regards,

Tahrcila

TAHRCILA DIAS

EXECUTIVE

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Under the Peepal Tree a two day cultural extravaganza that brought father and child together with a traditional touch

Mumbai February 15th, 2014: Grooming Babies Global Pvt. Ltd. – an initiative by a group of corporate women willingly stepped aside to make motherhood their priority by hosting a mega cultural festival to promote father child bonding. ‘Under the Peepal Tree’ it was a two day cultural extravaganza that brought forth the traditional art forms of India in a simplified manner understandable by preschool children. The event was held at the Maharashtra Nature Park, Bandra East on February 15 and 16, 2014 between 8.30 am and 3.30 p.m.

Event was inaugurated by Shri Rajendra Singh, who is more popularly known as the ‘Jal Purush’ or the Waterman of India with event called Drum Circle to create awareness about Mumbai’s Mithi River and water pollution amongst today’s generation. He was accompanied by 50 children from Mumbai’s NGO called Green Line and students from Auxiliun girls schools and St. Xaviers boy’s school. The event also witnessed house a pledge board where children pasted cutouts of fishes, crabs, etc. as a symbol for reviving the river.

Apart from that event witnessed various ancient medium of communication and art like A ballet by street artists which essayed the life of the Great Maratha Chatrapati Shivaji amidst music and dance; a moral story on ‘unity in diversity’ conveyed through the medium of street play where the performers used the traditional instrument ‘Duff’ to gather the crowd; a puppet show brought alive by puppeteers dressed as puppets, live musical performances like ‘Ektara’, ‘Bansuri’ and ‘Duff’ by visually impaired local-train artists; Drum Circle, Bicycle trail, Yoga, Film Workshop, India Baazar and many more cultural forms of engagements.

Other activities apart from the above mentioned which were sessions like story telling session, book reading sessions, film workshops, cooking with dad where children where involved in making food with their father, Butterfly workshop where children went through a crafty workshop and decorated the butterfly at their best. Adventure tail where parents took a ride with their child in a bicycle, mommy’s club where all spend time with friends, discuss, and indulge in activities as dad and baby having fun. And lastly as the event was cultural there was a yoga session too which was organized for kids

Well known celebrity Kunal Roy Kapoor who was recently seen in the film Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani happened to be at Under the Peepal Tree workshop with his two kids and wife said “I really enjoyed coming and having some good and quality time with his family. Really appreciate the effort taken by the group of mothers & congratulate Grooming Babies team. I feel they should organise such kind of activities every year”

Oindrila Purohit, Director of Grooming Babies said “Being an unprecedented event, we were unsure about the response, but was overwhelmed seeing so many happy children. Going forward we plan to make this an annual endeavor. We are looking forward to hosting it I would really like to thank parents and the children who attended the event without which the event would not have been successful”.

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Designer Umair Zafar showcases his Chikankari Summer Collection 2014

Umair Zafar’s Summer Collection 2014 includes over 40 types of Chikankari embroidery

Almost everyone even remotely connected with garments, apparel and fashion has heard of chikankari. But how many people know that there are over 40 types of hand stitches involved in chikankari embroidery work.

How many people know that one embroider working almost 18 hours a day takes over a week and more to complete a single garment. These outfits – which have provided employment to almost 250 embroiders in Mumbai and Lucknow, will be on display at a glitzy fashion event in Lucknow – the home of chikankari on 1st March at the launch of Umair Zafar’s Summer Collection 2014. And thanks to Umair Zafar the dying art of traditional Chikankari will be showcased to an international audience with at least 3 international TV channels covering the fashion event live.

Chikankari is delicate and artfully done hand embroidery on a variety of textile fabrics like muslin, silk, chiffon, organza, net etc. White thread is embroidered on cool, pastel shades of light muslin and cotton garments. These days chikan embroidery is also done with coloured and silk threads in different colours to sync with recent fashion trends and keep chikankari trendy with changing fashion and fabric.

Lucknow is the heart of the Chikankari industry today and the variety is known as Lucknawi chikan. The stich-work includes the following types of stitches – Tepchi, Bakhiya, Hool, Zanzeera, Rahet, Banarsi, Khatau, Phanda, Murri, Jali, Turpai, Darzdari, Pechani, Bijli, Ghaspatti, Makra, Kauri, Hathkadi, Banjkali, Sazi, Karan, Kapkapi, Madrazi, Bulbul-chasm, Taj Mahal, Janjeera, Kangan, Dhania-patti, Rozan, Meharki, Chanapatti, Baalda, Jora, Keel kangan, Bulbul, Sidhaul, Ghas-ki-patti and a few others.

Mumbai-based fashion designer Umair Zafar who originally hails from Lucknow and has been promoting Lucknowi Art and Craft will bring Lucknow Chikankari to an international audience in association with Sigma Rock Infra the patrons of Project Chikankari.

Designer Umair Zafar has done an in-depth research and study on Lucknowi Chikankari and its various forms of stitches. In order to promote the art, he will be showcasing a premium range of chikankari work with an amalgamation of different fabrics, mix and match with various other embroideries and fabrics like muslin, brocade and silk along with Swarovski crystals. The collection will be in different colors, ranges and sizes to suit all body types, which is rarely found in traditional chikankari work.

BACK GROUNDER & ADDITIONAL READING MATERIAL (for media persons – sourced from the internet)

What is Chikankari?

Chikankari is an ancient from of white floral embroidery, intricately worked with needle and raw thread. Its delicacy is mesmeric. For centuries, this fine white tracery on transparent white fabric has delighted king and commoner alike. It is centered mainly in the northern heartland of india, namely Lucknow, the capital of a large state, called Uttar Pradesh. It has survived the loss of royal patronage, suffered deeply at the hands of commercialization, lost its way sometimes in mediocrity and yet stayed alive, is a tribute to the skill and will of the crafts persons who have handed down this technique from one generation to another.

Today, this delicate form of embroidery is traditionally practiced in and around the city of Lucknow. Lucknow is a lovely old city, a city of old gardens and palaces, fine architectural conceit mosques, temples and ageing monuments, a city so favoured by European travelers once upon a time, that it was popularly called the Constantinople of the East. Like Marseilles, it has a great past and historicity. It is synonymous with architectural elegance, cultural finesse, social warmth and an enduring love for gracious living.

Lucknow also has the distinction of being today, the cusp of a very beautiful, very aesthetic form of white floral embroidery, unique to this geographical location. Chikankari has been practiced in Lucknow for almost more than two hundred years. But it did not originate in Lucknow. It flourished in the Mughal Court at Delhi in the 16th and 17th centuries. When the Mughal Court disintegrated the artisans scattered across the country. Some of them came and settled in Awadh. They brought this craft with them and gave it roots.

The origins of chikan are shrouded in mystery and legend. Some historians opine, that chikan is a Persian craft, brought to the Mughal Court of the Emperor Jahangir by his beautiful and talented consort Mehrunissa. The queen was a talented embroiderer and she so pleased the king with this ethereal, white floral embroidery that it was soon given recognition and royal patronage. Workshops were established wherein this embroidery was practiced and perfected.

The word ‘chikan’ is probably a derivative from the Persian word ‘chikin’ or ‘chikeen’ which means a kind of embroidered fabric. In all probability the word chikan is used for the white floral embroidery that Mehrunnissa brought with her from Persia. This form of embroidery became very popular with the king and his nobles and was embroidered on the finest Daccai. Mulmuls or muslin garments which were most appropriate for the hot, tepid climate of Delhi. There are some very fine Mughal miniatures that depict the Emperor Jahangir in white flowing muslim garments. Historians believe this could be chikan. After the decline and fall of the Mughal court, the artisans and craftsmen scattered across the length and breadth of India. Some settled in west Bengal, so for some time chikan flourished in Calcutta, though it is no longer practiced there. Some fled to the Northern state of Awadh and settled in the royal courts of the descendants of Burhan-ul-Mulk a Persian nobleman, who had found favour with the last Mughal king, Bahadur Shah and was appointed as the governor of Awadh.

There are, however, other opinions on the origin of chikan craft. According to one historian, there is evidence of embroidered muslin apparel depicted in the famous paintings in the Bagh and Ajanta caves dating back to the 9th century A.D. He suggests that this could be early trace of the presence of chikan. Kamala Devi Chattopadhyaya opines that chikan can be dated back to the time of king Harsha, who is said to have had “a great fondness for white embroidered, muslin garments, but no colour, no ornamentation, nothing spectacular to embellish it.” Bana, a contemporary of king Harsha refers to this skillfully embroidered white muslin. We would like to believe that this form of embroidery was chikan but cannot say it with certainty. Megasthenes, dating back to the 3rd century B.C has written of the use of ‘flowered muslin’ by the Indians in the court of Chandragupta Maurya. It could have been chikan though is cannot be confirmed.

Dr. Rahul Shukla in his book on the Taj Mahal, entitled Art Beyond Time, talks about chikan as being an offshoot of the Taj. This is very likely because, chikan motifs show a strong influence of the motifs and screens (jaalis) present in the Taj Mahal. ‘At present, the Taj motifs are freely used in Lucknow’s chikan work and most of its glory springs from the Taj Pitra Dura. The Persian fondness for floral patterns greatly influenced the Mughal rulers who adopted these patterns in their architecture, their paintings and even their garments. The Indian artists used more flowing designs rather than the stiffly formal Persian styles. Sheila Paine feels that ‘the floral designs of chikan share the same heritage.’

Chikankari used the finest of white cotton fabric called muslin or mulmul. A great deal of muslin was produced in and exported from Bengal. Dacca was the main region where cotton was cultivated due to the high humidity of the region, which prevented the delicate thread from breaking on contact with the air. The cotton spun was very white since the Brahmaputra and the Ganges rivers have bleaching properties. The chikan workers in Bengal used this fine muslin for embroidery.

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Vidyut Jamwal, whose films Force and Commando did extremely well especially in Punjab is getting calls from distributors there telling him how they feel he is the younger Akshay Kumar of the industry.

They told him how there is an equal craze for his films in Punjab like it was for an Akshay Kumar action film.

Even his fans feel there are a lot of similarities between the two actors.

Some of them being their absolute love for fitness and their very strong association with Martial arts.

While we have seen Akshay Kumar doing a lot of action movies in the past, we see how the only action hero of this generation, Vidyut Jamwal has picked movies for the love of action.

When Vidyut’s fans wrote to him to congratulate him for the Umeed Ka Naya Chehra award that he won at Zee Cine awards recently for Commando, many also mentioned to him how he is the younger version of Akshay Kumar.

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After ‘Babloo Happy Hai’, Sahil Anand is finally living his Bollywood dream

Sahil Anand came into limelight with his striking stint in season 4 of MTV Roadies. The dashing dude started his Bollywood career with Karan Johar’s Student Of The Year, in which he played Jeet’s character. The actor recently made his debut as a lead in ‘Babloo Happy Hai’. Directed by ‘I Am Kalam’ fame Nila Madhab Panda, which also stars Erica Fernandes along with Amol Parashar, Sumit Suri, Preet Kamal and Reyhna Malhotra, the film highlights the dilemmas that today’s youth faces.

Sahil gave an outstanding performance in his freshly released film and was appreciated thoroughly by critics and audience. Elated actor, who is finally living his Bollywood dream said, “To be honest, I was initially reluctant to sign, but Nila Sir believed in me. I hope I repaid all of the confidence he showed in me.”

“We are getting good feedback from our friends, fans, viewers and the industry people,” says a visibly charged Sahil.

Sahil is now geared up for his second film ‘Bang Bang Bangkok’ is directed by Vikram Pradhan and produced by DazzleWave Productions.

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White Feather Films in association with Waterlilly Films is all set to change gears in their forthcoming film. Director – producer Sanjay Gupta who has helmed films like Kaante, Musafir, Zinda and the latest blockbuster Shootout At Wadala has signed on Milap Zaveri to direct an out and out comedy for the his production house.

Writer-director Milap Zaveri who has written the dialogues for Shootout At Wadala – directed by Sanjay Gupta and who wrote Indra Kumar’s Grand Masti is all set to direct a film titled “Ooh La La” for the latter’s production house. Says Milap Zaveri – “I started my career with Kaante, directed by Sanjay and then was resurrected by his Shootout At Wadala, so it’s a huge honour for me to be directing a mad crazy comedy on the lines of “Housefull”, “Golmaal” and “Dhamaal” for him! Even though it isn’t a sex comedy, it will be “Grand” and have loads of “Masti”! On being contacted, Sanjay Gupta said – “It’s going to be a very clean comic film, which will have three heroes and two heroines. There won’t be any double meaning or cheap thrills,” says Gupta, adding that the film will go on the floors around September-October this year. “Now, I am looking at expanding my wings as a producer, so the idea is to make all kinds of films, including comedy, and not be stuck with just one genre.”

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Akshay unveils ‘Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty’
@ Zee Cine Awards!

Vrrrooms into the awards show on a bike, plays with fire, dances in the rain
and soars up into the sky tethered to a harness

Zee Cine Awards emerges as Bollywood’s Preferred Launch Pad
to Showcase the first look of upcoming films

It all began with a Vrrrrrooom sound thundering across the auditorium at the Reliance Studios in Film City where the ‘Lux Cozi Zee Cine Awards 2014 powered by Dabur Vatika Enriched Olive Hair Oil and Karbonn Mobile’ were held on 8th February. All heads turned to the back exit when the undisputed king of action Akshay Kumar charged in on a bike, looking rugged in a soldier’s uniform. On reaching the stage, Akshay stood tall on the bike as it made 6 dangerous circles and leapt off the running bike, only to be catapulted into the sky a good 35 feet over the stage. Air lifted tethered to a mere harness, Akshay had the audience roaring as he waved to them from up above. All of this was smoothly executed in one deft stroke without any retakes and in front of a wildly cheering LIVE audience. That is the hallmark of a true action superstar!

Akshay’s act had blazes of fire and the ladykiller shaking a leg with a bevy of gorgeous international models in the first-of-its kind rain dance at an awards ceremony. For Akshay, his performance at Zee Cine Awards was the unveil of his upcoming film ‘Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty’. Excited to showcase the first look of his film at the prestigious awards show, Akshay even held up a placard in the middle of his act that read – ‘Thanks Zee for this opportunity instead of an award. Cheers!’

Akshay said, “I’ve probably been associated with the Zee Cine Awards, more than any other awards night in Bollywood. I’ll never forget flying in from the back of the arena in the middle of a typhoon in Mauritius 2006!! These guys are the only ones that have ever managed to get me to host an awards night, an evening in Singapore 3 years ago, me & my mate Sajid Khan & our mini trampoline. So with my new film ‘Holiday’ on the brain, it was an honour when Zee Cine again called upon me to take their stage & perform my heart out. & thats exactly what I did, my full heart & soul went into this night, any excuse for action, explosions & a good old rain dance. I hope you enjoy the experience as much as I did, I definitely miss the stage, something I’d never thought I’d hear myself say…”

Vipul Shah, Producer of the film, added, “It’s been a pleasure working with Akshay in films like Aankhen, Singh is King, Waqt – A Race Against Time and Namaste London. Now, with ‘Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty’, viewers will get to see him as a very cutting-edge, slick action hero of an international scale. The film is a Generation Next, super-stylized thriller. With ZEE’s ever-expanding network and worldwide reach, the film will reach out to millions of viewers globally through the unveil of its first look at Zee Cine Awards.”

Produced by Vipul Shah, Reliance Entertainment and Aruna Bhatia, the film is directed by A R Murugadoss, has Sonakshi Sinha cast opposite Akshay Kumar and is scheduled to release on 6th June, 2014. Catch the most stunning spectacle of entertainment as the world’s biggest viewers’ choice awards – Lux Cozi Zee Cine Awards 2014 powered by Dabur Vatika Enriched Olive Hair Oil and Karbonn Mobile airs at 8 PM on 23rd February on Zee TV, Zee Anmol and Zee Tamizh.

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A promo a day takes you to Highway

In one of the most unique and interesting marketing initiatives to promote a movie, one new dialogue promo of Imtiaz Ali’s Highway will be released every day of this release week. The promos, based on actual film footage and dialogues, will give a better insight into the world of the film which stars Randeep Hooda and Alia Bhatt taking a journey across six states of India.

After the Highway Diaries, which took the viewers to all those brilliant locations the film was shot at, and the song promos and music video, which took A.R. Rahman’s energetic and soulful soundtrack to the world, these key dialogue promos will pull everyone into the plot of the movie.

These promos are available on the film’s YouTube channel www,youtube.com/HighwayTheFilm. Here are the links to some of them released so far..

Highway – RELEASING 21ST FEB, 2014 – 15.02.2014, Patakha Guddi ( AR Rahman video) 4mins, 19secs http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5fCChuvOEk

Highway – RELEASING 21ST FEB, 2014 – 16.02.2014 15 Sec – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pAunb2CwiZs

Highway – RELEASING 21ST FEB, 2014 – 17.02.2014 20 Sec – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDYKV6rIQQw

Highway, produced by Window Seat Films and presented by Sajid Nadiadwala, will be released worldwide by UTV Motion Pictures on February 21. The music of the film is available on T-Series.

Highway will release worldwide on 21st February, 2014

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Youtube Link For Alia Bhatts Highway

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=pDYKV6rIQQw&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DpDYKV6rIQQw

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Charity Carnival Evening at Breach Candy Swimming Bath Trust

It was Shopping by the Sea & Fun for the kids the Breach Candy Swimming Bath Trust ( BCSBT) Charity Carnival , on Saturday, 15th February, 2014; from 3- 7 pm on the Shack 66 lawns. 25 reputed NGOs of Mumbai sold their products and promoted/profiled their activities to gain awareness for the wonderful work that they do. There were some really exciting activities for kids like a bouncing castle, ball pool, toon mascots etc., and monkey tailing by Magic Bus, Mehndi by Shraddand Ashram, foot massages by Trinayani, a yoga demo by We Can, a childrens’ choir by Muktangan and sale of interesting yummies by some of the other NGOs. The pics of the event attached herewith, speak for themselves.

Chairman of the Trust Mr. Dipesh Mehta said, “The positive energy and spirit of the Charity Carnival was awe inspiring & motivating, to say the least. It was so heartening to see so many members, NGOs and volunteers participating so enthusiastically and members’ children having so much fun. The exuberance for the kids from We Can & Muktangan introduced a different dimension to the event and added so much colour and vibrancy to the evening”.

NGO participation in the Charity Carnival was subject to availability and approval of the BCSBT Charity Committee and entry was limited to members and their guests only. The BCSBT did its best to ensure a maximum return to the charities who participate on the day and promoted this noble cause wholeheartedly. The management went out of its way to ensure the comfort of all NGO volunteers and participants and provided them with snack boxes and refreshments. Ultimately, the patronage, staunch support and generosity of its members and their guests were what made this Carnival a success, in spite of the unseasonal showers on Saturday. In fact the committee had decided to waiver off the guest fee for guests patronizing this Carnival, to encourage members to bring in guests and thus generate more funds for the NGO. Others present at the event were Mallika Sanghvi, Kamal Sidhu, Sandali Solaskar(Keerti Reddy), Meher Moos, Dipesh Mehta, Vikram Malik, Marion Panjwani, Natasha Kewalramani, and Jeannette Anand. Overall everybody was seen enjoying the evening.

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MFT James assures hot bod

sans torturous diets and supplements!

Former model and the winner of the Best Body for Gladrags 2003, celeb fitness trainer MFT Harrison James and wife Sucheta James invited their friends over for an evening of health snacks to sample the stud studio programme, a generous effort to educate people about fitness and helping them getting their dream body, an effort that has stirred the world of fitness.

Seen at the do of MFT Harrison and Sucheta James were new mom Urvashi Sharma Joshi after the birth of her baby Samaira less than a month ago, Rajiv of Roadies fame, Reyhna Malhotra, Alesia Raut, Ami Billimoria, Bhagyashree Raut, Candice Pinto, Pia Trivedi, Ritwik Bhattacharya, Surbhi Rao, Sheela Tiruchy, Nihar Pandya among many others.

Best known as ”Whip Cracker Tough Taskmaster”, Harrison James’ journey started at the age of 17 with a crash course on fitness but all his training techniques comes from his own experiences over the years of practicing on himself.

Harrison James specially customizes the exercises depending on the needs of his clients and giving them instant results without the help of protein shakes, supplements and torturous diet plans, certainly making him one of his kind.

Having sports background Harrison James always emphasizes in building up core strength than going under a knife to become a size zero (yet unknown to him) or getting six or eight packs. It’s important to have endurance, stamina and positive outlook. He first tunes the mind of his clients because if the mind is healthy and it runs in right direction, body follows. In the end mind is a player.

“MFT is my dream to make you meet your dream body,” said Harrison to his friends gathered to be part of his dream project for a fitter India, the natural way. Obviously, the entire venue resonated with cheers.

Rajendra Ganotra is the Editor of Spicy Stars Mumbai

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