Rahul Bose switches into damage control mode, but offers no apology

Rahul Bose certainly knows how to broaden his female fan-base uttering just a few words.

Rahul Bose ‏ @RahulBose1

It’s really quite simple. O2 in, CO2 out.

and another tweet that reads:

Please read ALL my tweets before jumping down my throat again! There are 10 of them. 11, w/this one. On a flight, so back in 3hrs. Cheers.

Cheerful as that sounds, he might be just on the verge of turning into the Indian equivalent of Mel Gibson and he should be perhaps the one to start with breathing exercises.


But thankfully India is more forgiving than America with people who step into a hornet’s nest. What he is  talking about is the reaction to his proposal to rehabilitate rapists in India and transform them into “gender warriors” – whatever that means. A day later a holy storm unleashes on him in form of a twitter war.The poor guy all he wanted is help us women…. how could his effort backfire in this manner?

It just happens so that India has been rattled by most brutal gang rapes, every day now it seems new ones are being reported. It has women, mothers, fathers, daughters on edge.

The reaction wouldn’t be so strong if India’s justice system hadn’t been so lenient in dealing with rapists for as long as we can remember…What’s needed right now is harsher sentencing, follow-through. Women who come forward should be treated sensitively, instead being blamed for provoking what happened to them. Until now it seems victims were being accused, like “she had it coming, the way she dresses” But the last horrendous incident in Delhi last November, has turned a page after people took in drones to the street calling for justice.

We know Rahul Bose deep down  has his heart in the right place, but this is a very delicate matter. And his message might have been misconstrued and ill-received because the times right now call for action, for stricter punishments. Also, it’s coming from a man. The politically correct thing to do for a man is to reaffirm the need of acknowledgment and punishment for rape, not so much forgiveness.

Besides, people extract from carpet statements the one or two ideas that emerge and are recognizable, sticking out like a sour thumb. Forgiveness and rehabilitation. Forgiveness HAS BEEN ALWAYS THERE, UNFORTUNATELY. That’s the problem. Part of the problem.

It’s a little bit like a white dude saying “I don’t understand. **Ni**er** is not a bad word, I hear black folks saying it all the time”  and you want to grab him and tell him “It comes with a whole painful history attached to it!”

It’s the same as Rahul Bose telling us to show compassion to sorry-ass rapists and love conquers all. It’s the way to a better society.

He is living in dreamland. First of all, what about faking of being sorry? What about required long-term therapy and follow-ups? who’s going to pay for that.. how will you deliver those services? What about recidivism? are there any studies about the likelihood of repeat sex offenders in India? especially in a lenient system that prefers to hush dirty little secrets under the table…. it’s not as easy as handing out little cornflowers and preaching about the benefits of lovemaking vs rape. And please, shift the focus of your sermon to the victims and deliver services to them that make THEM heal from their psychological and physical wounds. Rapists should know: no mercy will be bestowed on you! That’s the only message that will bring change!

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Indian photo exhibit of the work of Homai Vyarawalla at the Rubin Museum of Art, NYC

If you are visiting New York City and are interested in Indian arts and culture, a trip to the Rubin Museum of Art is de rigueur and should be your first stop.  The exhibition Candid, The Lens and Life of Homai Vyarawalla was reviewed by the NYT today and should appeal to history and photography buffs equally. Check it out.




The Lens and Life of Homai Vyarawalla

July 6, 2012 – January 14, 2013

Homai Vyarawalla; Indian (1913 – 2012) ; Jawaharlal Nehru caught by the camera at Palam airport while waiting for his sister, Vijayalakshmi Pandit, the Indian Ambassador in Moscow, 1954; gelatin silver print; Alkazi Foundation for the Arts

Homai Vyarawalla (1913-2012) was India’s first female photojournalist. This exhibition, the first on Vyarawalla outside of India, will present her photography from the late 1930s to 1970, and narrate her extraordinary life with a biographical film and ephemera from her career.

From early in her career, Homai Vyarawalla documented key events from the generation around Independence, including the historic meeting of Gandhi and the Congress Committee on the 1947 plan for partition, and she recorded the visits to India of world leaders and dignitaries including Queen Elizabeth, Jacqueline Kennedy, Ho Chi Minh, and Zhou Enlai. She was revered in India and her recent death at age 98 generated tributes around the world. The exhibition is presented in collaboration with the Alkazi Foundation for the Arts in New Delhi.

Curated by Beth Citron

Travel for this exhibition was supported by Rasika and Girish Reddy, and The Pierre New York, A Taj Hotel.


Members-Only Reception

July 11, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Join us for a special event for members at the Friend level and higher on July 11! Contact Emilie Dufour at edufour@rmanyc.org or 212-620-50000, ext. 313 for more information.

Click here to learn about the benefits of membership


Open to the Public

Candid is located in our Theater Level Gallery, below Serai in the colonnade. Admission to the Theater Level Gallery is free of charge, at all times.


check out the museum’s website:      1721

NYT  review:

Restrained Chronicler of Tumultuous Times

‘Candid,’ Photos by Homai Vyarawalla, at Rubin Museum


The Indian photographer Homai Vyarawalla, who died in January at 98, spoke many times, with undiminished regret, of two opportunities missed.

Alkazi Collection of Photography

Candid Jawaharlal Nehru in a Homai Vyarawalla photo at the Rubin Museum.

Alkazi Collection of Photography

Homai Vyarawalla captured Jacqueline Kennedy’s feeding a baby elephant while visiting India in 1962.

On Jan. 30, 1948, she left her home in New Delhi intending to film the elderly Mohandas K. Gandhi at his daily prayer meeting at Birla House in the city. Something distracted her, and she turned back. If she had continued on, she would have witnessed, and probably documented, Gandhi’s assassination.

Two weeks later she traveled with a party of international journalists to Allahabad to photograph the immersion of Gandhi’s ashes at the confluence the Ganges and Yamuna Rivers. At the last minute the boat assigned to reporters and photographers got stuck on a sandbar. The immersion went on without them. Again, she didn’t get the shot.

But if those two crucial moments in India’s modern history eluded her, many, many others did not, as is clear from “Candid: The Lens and Life of Homai Vyarawalla,” a small, evocative, event-filled retrospective of her work at the Rubin Museum of Art.

read more here…


Sunny Leone lioness in disguise


Wow, she knows her business. If she does only half as well acting as she does what she does here,  we will be thrilled with her in Jism 2…

I am already in her quarter. Because:  you can LEARN from a woman like her!! :-)

Randeep Hooda must have had a field-day filming with her. Mahesh Bhatt probably lurking in the background and having dinner with her after the shoots, yeah, just to go one more time over the script…haha

I am kinda excited and very curious to see Jism 2, primarily because of Pooja Bhatt being the director.  I am favorably biased towards women directors. A) because I can relate to their views and B) because I feel there need to be more of them…

yeh kasoor from the movie Jism 2



The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

This movie looks like a wonderful entertainer and reminds me of my first visit to India in 1998. Anybody who has never been to India before and experiences it for the first time has similar stories to share. It’s a lot like being initiated. First of all, tourists aren’t the norm yet in India but that starts changing slowly. You’ll be the white face that sticks out everywhere.  You walk around with dollar signs imprinted on your forehead, even if you are broke like a “Kirchenmaus” (mouse in a church, german saying) in your native country. You’ll have to fend off hiked “foreigner” price-tags from veggies to taxi rides.

If you have a lot of money to spend, you’ll see the buttery side of India. The luxurious hotels. Fantastic restaurants. Great shopping. The real thing you experience when you travel with a backpack. And that’s the India I love. Yes, it means a few notches off your comfort zone. Not just Delhi or Bombay or Goa but smaller towns and villages, hill stations.

I am getting so nostalgic thinking about India, I want to book a flight now.

India never leaves your bloodstream once you’ve been there. It will always pull you back into its fuzzy womb. When you come back from India you feel as if the Western world is one gigantic nursing home.  void. sterile. boring. You wish yourself back into the whirlpool of India where people write the rules and flex in the winds of existence. They accommodate. They make room, for you and for themselves. Life in India is easier and harder at the same time. Book a flight. See for yourself.

I can’t wait for the movie.


India confounds, fascinates stars of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Monday, April 30, 2012 ()


Cast: Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith and Dev Patel
Director: John MaddenThe Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, which opens May 4, 2012 in the United States and May 18, 2012 in India, is the kind of movie that will either make you want to book the next flight to India or never set foot in the country.It stands out from other Hollywood pictures set in India like City of Joy and Slumdog Millionaire, which focus on the country’s poverty, violence and gangs. Marigold takes a much lighter, almost comical view on life in India, but it doesn’t stint on the crowds and the chaos.

The movie’s premier at the Ziegfeld Theater on the West Side of Manhattan in New York City last week included some of the movie’s biggest stars, including Judi Dench, and a sizable contingent of Indian-American actors who were not in the movie, including Pooja Kumar, Meetu Chilana and Samrat Chakrabarti.

The story, based on the novel These Foolish Things, by Deborah Moggach, follows a group of seven retirees from Britain who all independently hear of the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel in Jaipur, and picture a lavish place to spend their post-working years. When they actually arrive in India, however, they find a crumbling building.

A powerhouse cast of British actors, including Judi Dench, Penelope Wilton, Tom Wilkinson and Maggie Smith, play the residents. Dev Patel of Slumdog Millionaire fame has the role of the hotel owner, Sonny Kapoor, who delivers the line “In India, we have a saying: Everything will be all right in the end. So if it is not all right, it is not yet the end.” The director is John Madden, best known for Shakespeare in Love, which won an Oscar for Best Picture.

Although the film is set in Jaipur, only a few scenes were actually filmed there. Most of the movie was shot in Udaipur, including the fictional Marigold Hotel, which is a building just outside the city.

Only two of the British actors had ever been to India before the nine-and-a-half-week shoot, (even the director Mr. Madden had not), so most of them were in the same situation as the characters they play: they were newcomers to the India and each had their unique impressions of the country.

During a recent visit to New York to promote the film, they discussed their impressions.

Ms. Wilton, who plays a grumpy housewife, Jean, said that she found the country extraordinary and is looking forward to going again, especially to the south. Ms. Dench, who played a widow, Evelyn, said that although she never had the desire to visit India, she was instantly fascinated and bewitched when she landed there. “My character in the movie says that India is an assault on the senses, and it’s true,” she said. “The beauty of the people was astounding as were the colors, the noises, the smells.”

Mr. Wilkinson, acting in the role of High Court Judge Graham, who comes to India to find his former male lover, was slightly more disturbed by his time there. “It was one of the most brain-curdling experiences I’ve had, and I have never quite fully recovered,” he said. “You could never get used to the fact that you would see a woman washing her baby in a puddle and then such extreme wealth 50 yards away.”

© 2012, The New York Times News Service

Exam crunch-time in India: sit back, inhale, exhale… repeat

It’s crunch-time in India, but also here in America. so if you are studying for exams right now,  take some time to inhale and exhale. Let things in your mind settle cuz otherwise you’ll forget everything you studied for and your head will Xplode. Take a lil breather.  Sit back, watch the bees and the birds.  Connect with your buddies.  Take a nap in between.  Take a breather! :-)

watch 3 Idiots (well, okay that’s a longer break…)

think FALTU


Parents must kill hype around exams: Experts

Shreya Bhandary & Pratibha Masand, TNN Feb 2, 2012, 07.11AM IST

  • MUMBAI: The financial capital’s children are more tense about exams than their counterparts in Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore and Kolkata. They not only compromise on their playtime-almost 42% of the children interviewed didn’t watch TV at all in the run-up to their exams-but also on their meals.

Around 39% of Mumbai’s students do not get adequate sleep during examinations, said the survey. Dr Deepak Ugra of the Indian Academy of Pediatrics pointed out a vicious cycle of poor nutrition and ill-health . “Due to exam stress, children suffer from low immunity . They are more susceptible to viral or other infections,” he said. Mumbai’s kids also complain of another illness-headaches . “They cram too much in a short time. Concentration issues lead to anxiety and/or lack of sleep,” said Dr Ugra.

The problem is pan-Indian , say IMA officials. “Children are sleeping less, eating junk food and ignoring hygiene. What can the result be? Obviously, they run the risk of falling sick during exams,” said All-India Institute of Medical Sciences chief dietician Anuja Agarwal, who is also a member of the IMA.

IMA’s Pawan Gupta, the lead author of the survey, said: “It is quite natural for children to give board exams their best shot but practices like skipping meals and foregoing study breaks take their toll. What children don’t realize is that these practices increase their risk of contracting illnesses and can nullify their efforts.”

Educationists believe that it is the environment at home that can be more stressing. “Parents are more stressed than children these days,” said J Roberts of Oxford Public School. Most principals agreed that parents are the ones they need to counsel more.

With the Right to Education Act in place, the aim is to reduce exam stress and focus more on class performance. “We also ensure that students don’t get stressed. Still, parents end up worrying and this brings in competition,” said Natasha Mehta, principal of Euro School in Navi Mumbai.

Psychiatrist Harish Shetty said exams were hyped in family as well as society. “Board exams define the self-esteem of the entire family. Children end up either eating a lot or not eating at all. It is important for them to play and de-stress themselves . Parents must ensure that exams do not define the talent of the child,” he said.