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Published by asif.ambiance, 2022-05-06 14:40:04

desi pages may 2022 final copy


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Hello All !

This year looks very eventful as the world moves more towards
being normal. The vision and platform Funasia brings to the
entire DFW metroplex under my leadership provides plethora of
entertainment packages to bring the community together. I am
proud of Moody Akhtar who is an integral part of Funasia Events.
Our partnership and brainstorming have always resulted in

interesting and successful events. Recently, we held our first ‘Sur
VAISHALI THAKKAR on Air Live in Concert’ on April 1st. It was a grand success, and we
CEO Perfect Tax & Finance & thank the community for supporting us and the local talents as well.

We are excited of our eid gala and celebrity cricket match on 6th & 7th of this
Month. We all know that our community is fond of cricket and what better way to
celebrate Eid than watch our favorite celebrities play a match. We are bringing

a huge team here for a fun filled evening and dinner with your favorite celebrities.
The biggest event this year ‘Laxmikant Pyarelal Live in Concert’. The magnificent
magician of music, and living legend Pyarelalji is returning to the US after 25 years
with pure soulful music of the 70s, 80s, and 90s. It will be a star-studded evening
with legendary singers like Amit Kumar, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Sudesh Bhosle, Sadhana
Sargam, Mohammad Salamat, Priyanka Mitra and the show will be presented by
yesteryear Bollywood beauties Zeenat Aman, Padmini Kohlapure, Rati Agnihotri.

You may look forward to and get your tickets for the other events in the pipeline.

We have Dreamgirl Hema Malini. Our favorite comedy show that we all watch as
a stress buster - Kapil Sharma is coming with his entire team to entertain Dallas
Live on June 17th. Our star Sanju baba will be in town with his team on August
21st. Bringing an event takes a lot of planning form inception to execution but it
is rewarding when “YOU”, our community members support and cheer for us by
showing up. Moody and I thoughtfully curate the events keeping all of ‘YOU’ in mind.
Making 2022 eventful for all of us. Get your tickets at .Come and

enjoy our shows so we can bring you more!

The very hot weather of Summer
has set in Dallas and we are also
In the last last few weeks of School
Year. It sure is busy time planning
for graduations after the two year
break due to Covid, and vacations
after schools close. Feels nice to
be able to celebrate once again.
May is a special month .Happy
Eid to all of you celebrating .

This month we celebrate International
Mother’s Day on May 8th. Mothers
play a very vital role in a child’s life
and our special article in this edition
recognizes the famous mothers.
If you travel and enjoy partying, check
out a very interesting article of the top
best places to party. DesiPages articles
Melodious Echoes , Our Book Review,

People Speak , Madhuri’s Musings are
very interesting columns to indulge in
again this month. I am sure some of
you are addicted to them. Our amazing
contributors to these pages do a great
job in bringing their perspectives to you.

If you have contributions do write to me
at [email protected]. Enjoy May
2022 Desipages

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Adai- Aviyal


Soak all the above ingredients in enough water
for 1 to 2 hours. Grind them together with salt to
a thick batter. The batter should be thicker than
dosa batter. Add hing, curry leaves and cilantro to
INGREDIENT FOR ADAI this batter and keep it aside.

• 1 cup Tuvar dal
• 1 cup Chana dal AVIYAL MASALA
• 1cup Moong dal • 1 cup grated coconut
• 1 cup rice • 2-3 green chilies
• 7-8 red chilies • 1 tsp cumin (jeera)
• 1 small piece gingerOptional • Grind these into a smooth paste.
• 1 tsp – Methi eeds
• 1 tsp Dhania seeds


Cube the vegetables to an eve size. Add a spoon
of virgin coconut oil onto a pan and splutter
some mustard seeds, a sprig of curry leaves and
a little hing. Add the vegetables and give them
a stir with some salt. Cook the vegies in little to
no water in medium flame, covered. It will take
about 7-10 minutes for the veggies to get done.

INGREDIENT FOR AVIYAL Don’t overcook. Add the coconut paste to the
• 1 Raw Banana aviyal and set aside.
• 1 carrot
• 200 gms – white pumpkin Heat a nonstick flat pan or a seasoned cast iron
• 200 gms- red pumpkin dosa pan. Check for the heat of the pan. Pour
• 100 gms -flat beans a large ladle full of the adai batter and spread it
• 100 gms- string beans
• 100 gms -peas. around like a dosa. Adai’s consistency is thicker
than that of dosa, so if you spread it a little
You can add any other vegetable thicker it is ok. Make a little hole in the center.
of your choice, like potato or Spread gingelly oil into the hole and around
sweet potato also.
the adai. Flip on both sides to cook well. To the
aviyal add a cup full of fresh yoghurt and give
it a good mix. Serve adai with the aviyal and

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cover story

BB2 starring the young pair,
Kartik Aryan and Kiara Advani
is scheduled to release on the
20th of May 2022. Only Rajpal
Yadav from BB appears in BB2.
The entire star cast is different
from the previous film.

While BB was directed by
Priyadarshan who gave us
some memorable movies
in Hindi such as, ‘Virasat,’
‘Hungama’ and ‘Hera Pheri’ to
name a few is a n acclaimed
A country town with stories. An unoccupied director in Malayalam and Hindi. However,
opulent mansion with deep dark secrets and BB2 is being directed by Anees Bazmee.
an angry lady ghost who roams the wide Anees has given us some very entertaining
and long halls of the mansion and is always films such as ’Hulchul,’ ‘Welcome’ and ‘Pyar
watching. And predictably a lovely couple To Hona Hi Tha’ which incidentally was
buys and comes to live in it. These mark the nominated for 4 Filmfare awards in 1998.
beginnings of a chilly horror story, isn’t it? It Since this a franchise BB2 is a stand-alone
also marks the beginning of many franchises sequel of BB. Apart from the title of the movie
(probably?) to come. and two songs from the original film, the story
of BB2 is original, according to its director,
‘Bhool Bhulaiya 2’ (BB2) is the 2nd film of the’ Anees Bazmee. Karthik Aryan plays the role
Bhool Bhulaiya’ series. ‘Bhool Bhulaiya’(BB), of Ruhan alias Rooh Baba who lies about his
starring Akshay Kumar, Vidya Balan and power of talking to ghosts. Kiara plays his
Shiney Ahuja was released in 2007. A psycho- love interest Reet, believed to be dead by her
horror-comedy tale of a girl, Avni, played family whoa re incidentally the owners of the
convincingly by Balan, who gets possessed haunted haveli. What happens when ‘Rooh
by the ‘ghost of the mansion,’ Manjulika, a Baba’ actually confronts the infamous ghost
gifted court dancer in the court of Raja Vibhuti of Manjulika forms the crux of the story. The
Narayan. Avni is treated by Dr. Aditya Sharma, extremely talented Tabu also past of the star
played by Akshay Kumar. The film deals with cast. Tabu’s first look was released a few days
psychological the supernatural and leaves it back and from the looks of it is hard to judge
to the audience to decide about concepts like whether she is an angel, a devil or somewhere
‘ghosts’ and ‘possession.’ in between.

Back in 1993, Mohanlal and Shobana The film has been shot in Mumbai and Jaipur.
starred in a Malayalam movie called BB2 promises to be a fun movie, more in
‘Manichitrathazhu’ (zhu should be pronounced the lines of the recent horror-comedy movie,
as ‘r’ without stressing the ‘rr’sylable). ‘Stree’. Bazmee’s run with fun has been pretty
‘Manichitrathazhu’ means ‘Ornate Lock.’ The successful so far and we see no reason as to
film is one of the highest grossing films ever in why that would change with BB2. A few dialogs
Mollywood. The film was later made, in 2005 that can be heard in the initial trailers also
as ‘Chandramukhi’ starring the one and only seem to be rib-tickling. It will be interesting to
Rajnikant and Jyotika. BB was a remake of watch the cast of Aryan, Advani, Tabu come
both these films.

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together in this film. One thing is certain.
Manjulika continues to haunt the haveli and
is scanning continually for a host or perhaps
multiple hosts, who knows?

Anees Bazmi as mentioned before is well
known as a director of entertaining films. He
started his career with ‘Hulchul’ but found
success in ‘Pyar to Hona Hi Tha,’ in the year
1998. It became one of the highest grossing
films of that year. Starring Kajol and Ajay Devgn,
this romantic comedy was one of the earliest
adaptations of the Hollywood romcom, ‘The
French Kiss.’ Bazmee also directed the psycho Kiara Advani plays Reet in BB2. Stunning
thriller ‘Deewangee’starring Akshaye Khanna to look at, Kiara’s looks have been often
and Ajay Devgn. This was also a remake of compared to the classic beauty, dream girl
the Hollywood thriller Primal fear that starred Hema Malini. Kiara debuted in the 2014
Ed Norton and Richard Gere. But ever since social-comedy-thriller Hindi film Fugly. Kiara
‘Welcome’ Bazmee has given us rib-tickling went to play a supporting role in M.S. Dhoni:
comedies like ‘Singh is Kinng’, ‘Thank You’ The Untold Story and starred opposite superstar
and ‘Ready’. BB was a great success not only Mahesh Babu in the Telugu political thriller,
because of the story line but also because of ‘Bharat Enum Naan’. Kiara played opposite
the casting. Akshay Kumar’s comedy scenes Shahid Kapoor in the remake of ‘Arjun Reddy,’
were loved a lot by the audience and the ‘Kabir Singh.’ Kiara starred opposite Siddharth
role of Avni/Manjulika, previously offered to Malhotra in the film, ’Shershah’. Released on
Aishwarya Rai and taken up by Vidya Balan Amazon Prime, ‘Shershah’ became the most
were executed to perfection by the ‘Jalsa’ watched film on that OTT platform. Kiara has
actor. When asked as to why this pair was not been touted as beauty with talent. She has
repeated in the sequel, Bazmee mentions,’ experimented with bold offbeat roles such
the script did not give us the liberty to bring as the role of the sexually dissatisfied wife
them on board’. Megha, in the Netflix anthology ‘Lust Stories.’
Karan Johar directed her film.
Kartik Aryan who plays Roohan debuted
in 2011 with the comedy film ’Pyar Ka The casting of ‘Bhool Bhulaiya 2’ definitely
Punchnama’ Son of two doctors, Kartik holds looks promising. Kiara and Kartik are amply
a degree in Biotech Engineering. Vectren of supported by veteran actors Tabu, Sanjay
merely a dozen films so far, Kartik already is Mishra and Rajpal Yadav. Yadav’s comedy
touted as a rising superstar, as popular as scenes with Akshay Kumar were a riot in BB. It
Akshay Kumar in the genre of comedy. He will be interesting to watch Kartik and Yadav’s
steps into large shoes of Kumar in BB2. Asked chemistry in BB2.
if he felt any pressure stepping into the ‘Kesari’
actor’s shoes, Aryan replied humbly that those As the trailer of the film says,’ 15 saal baad
shoes are too big for him to fill. He asks people is darwaze ne dastak di hai’. We look forward
not to compare him with Kumar as it would to Manjulika as she returns on screen after 15
be unfair to him. He further mentions that he years. She still has the upper hand, she still
has tried his own style as BB2 is completely rules. It looks like BB2 will rule the boxoffice
a different film from BB. According to the just like BB did, 15 years back.
film’s director Anees Bazmee, Kartik’s sense
of comic timing is impeccable. So, it will be
interesting to watch him in the film.

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Present coupon before consultation begins. valid till 04/15/2022

Present coupon before consultation begins. valid till 04/15/2022

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Lifestyle Article

Top 10 Partying Cities in the World

Cinderella got to be a princess all right but like a scenic river cruise across the Seine river,
missed the best period of the first ball she ever or one might just drive around in a vintage car
attended. She could have made a deal with the for a tour of this city with highly eclectic tastes.
fairy godmother and stayed after midnight at And the ‘Iron Lady’, pride of France, the Eiffel
the party! But we are not her and so let us look tower comes alive every night with the most
at some cities around the world that come alive spectacular lighting.
after the sun goes down.
Beaches, Bodies
A popular and Bars!
destination for That’s what
travelers of all Florianopolis,
kinds, Bangkok Brazil has to offer.
teems with those The beaches are
wanting to drown concentrated on
themselves in the northern side while the Centro and Lagoa
alcohol. Buckets filled with alcohol can be da Conceição areas offer bars and clubs with
found all over the streets of Bangkok. But different music styles. One of the hostels run a
then Bangkok offers tourists other attractions pool party as well. Celebrating 11 years of the
like Lumpini Park, Muay Thai fights, National best planned parties in Floripa, is Café De La
Museum that show cases the art and culture Musique. The place is inspired by the European
of Thailand, Khao San Road, floating Market seaside resorts like Cannes, Capri and Monte
amongst many others. Khao San Road has Carlo. The best party happens during New Year.
developed into a ‘backpacker’s ghetto’ has International jet setting crowds throng here and
several attractions for tourists of all kinds. One have a good time.
can find cheap hotels, free flow of alcohol
and for the celebration of festivals such as the Tokyo
Songkran Festival, the Thai New Year. Tokyo is probably

Paris one of the best
cities on earth and
Popularly known as has a legendry
the City of Lights, nightlife. To
Paris is home to experience the best
several night clubs of Tokyo’s night life
and bars. Visit one might want to
the Moulin and visit the districts of Shibuya, Shinjuku, Roppongi,
you might find Ginza, Shimokitazawa and Ebisu. The first 3
yourself catching a cabaret show while sipping are popular with international travelers but all
champagne or sampling some gourmet tasting are great anyways. Tachinomiya or stand-up
venues. The Moulin ws built by Hollywood bars are popular in the Shinjuku district. Most
director David Lynch. This very exclusive trains and subways run only until midnight. So,
Hotel allows only celebrities until 12 am, but if you must get stranded it might as well be in
after that I is open to the general public. This the Shibuya district. Countless eateries, music
beautiful French capital offers other attractions and dance clubs, karaoke bars, watering holes

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Lifestyle Article
are just some of the attractions you will find
here, open until the wee hours of the morning.
Tokyo has a mix of everything for the night owl. a must go if you love to dance. But if you have
Be it a mixology den, perfectly crafter cocktails, two-left feet and still want to enjoy your glass
international DJs Tokyo encompasses all of of champagne with some entertainment visit
some comedy clubs at Queen Street. Takuntai
Dubai street in Auckland is touted to be the prettiest
street in Auckland. Takuntai is the place to go if
Home to the tallest you want to enjoy some Asian food along with
building in the hopping bars. Frenzi bar crawl offers free drinks
world, Burj Khalifa, and even an occasional hot dog on Thursday
Dubai offers a nights. Backpackers galore!
variety of nighttime
fun. It is also home vibrant night life do let us know about it and
to a variety of don’t forget to send us some pictures! Next
bars and night clubs ranging from the most week we will go bar hopping around the world
exclusive bars to the most happening dance in search of the most exotic night lives!
clubs where the young throng all the way until Playa Del Carmen
the sun comes up again. The clubbing scene
starts Thursday night in Dubai as weekends Closer home to
are Friday and Saturday in the city. Most clubs USA is Playa Del
also offer a Ladies night special on Tuesdays Carmen, Mexico
or Wednesdays. If you are one of those that that is legendary
wants to take a long romantic walks the Dubai for night life. For
Marina is the best place to be. Open from people staying
9:00A.M. until 9:00 P.M, the Marina is situated along River Maya,
alongside n artificial canal. It boasts of an array a popular tourist
of restaurants, cafes, boutiques and yacht rides. spot, Playa Del Carmen is a place to visit at least
It also has cycling and jogging tracks, making once for some real night life fun. Other places
it an idea place for families to have a taste of pale in comparison to the Playa! Most clubs are
Dubai at night. located on 10th street and 12th street. There is
a variety of bars that cater to every taste. A place
worth mentioning is the Coco Bongo Club and
From the dizzying Disco. Although advertised as a Bar, this place
deserts of Dubai let is more like a Vegas style show. The show starts
us go down under at 11:30 P.M. and goes on until a little after
for some more 3:00 A.M., Monday through Thursday. After
fun! Auckland that the club just plays music. If you are looking
ca be termed as for an open-air bar with live music, Kitxen is for
‘The Backpacker’s you. There isa drag show available at a 100%
paradise’. New gay club, Club 69.
Zealand is a backpacker’s country and Auckland The above are just some destinations around
has a plethora of bars with discounted food the world which offer entertaining night life
and drinks and special events every night of the for those who seek it. If you know of or have
week. New Zealand is strict on identity, so it is experienced some great night life anywhere
good to know the type of identity you need to else in the world do let us know about it on our
possess if you want to down some alcohol. Some FB page.
of the best bars for backpackers, new travelers
and residents alike. Bars on Queen street are

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People speak

A column created by asking a question to 104.9 FM Funasia Radio listeners
by RJ Madhulika on her show ‘Just Chill’
during the summer vacation and his cousins used to
help him finish the holiday homework in the last leg
of the vacation. He said the entire summer break they
would have lots of fun - playing board games during
the day as it used to be very hot to venture outdoors,
then evening they would play cricket with his cousins
and their friends in the nearby park. It was only close
to the end of the vacation that he would remember
that its time to go back to reality and school, so his
cousins would help him finish the homework quickly
so that he doesn’t get into trouble.
Monika said having rasna - a drink which had just
got launched and trying all its different flavors and
then making icecream using it is one of her favorite
“Sometimes, it’s better to bunk a class and enjoy with memories. She said every evening in summers they
friends, because today, when I look back, marks never (she and her friends ) would play badminton and then
make me laugh, but memories do. “ come back home where her mom would have rasna
-A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. ready for all of them along with some snacks and they
would all relish it and have a good time! She said
Childhood is a golden part of our life that we can even now when she goes back she asks her bhabhi to
never go back to. Childhood days are the most make rasna for her.
cherished days of our life, where we enjoy the little
things. Experiences in childhood help us to shape our Jay remembers collecting stamps and currency of
future. different places and keep them nicely in an album. He
said his mom still has that album in her trunk and now
In my show Just Chill, for the people’s speak section when they visit India she shows it to his kids and he
- I asked our listeners what their favorite childhood tells very proudly all the stories around that collection.
memory is, to my surprise I found out that the He said it all started as his father used to travel a lot
memories are so much similar! and in those times there wasn’t any google or internet
was not so readily available, so his dad used to bring
Be it a picnic ritual, going to grandparents house for back foreign currency and stamps from whichever
summer break, playing hide and seek or antakshari places he had traveled to and this used to be the only
with friends and neighbors during power cuts… reason he didn’t mind his dad traveling so much!
the fondness and the nostalgia which everyone felt
remembering those memories really did touch my Suraiya ji said in Hyderabad the neighborhood she
heart. Most of us have fond memories of food from lived in was very social and everyone would share
our childhood. Whether it was our mom’s homemade whatever delicacies they would cook with each other.
kheer or a signature dish or a memorable chocolate This way she not only got to taste dishes from different
birthday cake, food has a way of transporting us back regions and all around the world but also got to learn
to the past. few words of different languages as some of her
neighbors were from different countries as well. She
In this article I have changed some names of few said they are still very much in touch with some of her
listeners, as some of them were not comfortable if their neighbors who might have moved to different places
name got disclosed. So sharing some of the beautiful now but still have the connection. They still remember
childhood memories which people remember fondly and talk about those times when there was no internet
and still miss them very much. yet one would know so much about different people
and culture thanks to their friendship.
Nitesh as a child used to go to his Nana Nani’s house

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For Kirti her favorite childhood memory is the time People speak
when vcr came into being. How every weekend in the
summer break they would go to the market and rent halt for quite some time so mom and her cousins
out a VCR, few movie cassettes and watch the movies would get time to catchup. She would buy few boxes
several times till it was time for the cassettes and the of Petha and dal moth from Agra station and give
VCR to return. they would watch movies back to back some to them as well. I also remember always buying
overnight after finishing dinner, and have popcorns, comic books and those bird toys which they would be
icecream and tea break after every movie.She said selling at the station. Then I clearly remember when
the most fun part used to be deciding which movies to cable tv came, we used watch zee tv and mtv. The
rent and how her Grandma’s decision used to be the only way mom used to make us study was the threat
final decision. that she would get the cable tv disconnected if we
don’t get good grades!
Going to friends place on his bicycle, playing table
tennis and having impromptu sleepovers are some of Another memory which I fondly remember is the filling
Ravi’s favorite childhood memories. He is amazed as up of air coolers every morning and evening, as we
to how comfortable his parents used to be with letting had to make sure the pipe doesn’t fall out and that
him be out for so long without having any phones the water shouldnt overflow too as else we would get
to track him or connect/ reach out to him. Today reprimanded by grandma for wasting water. We used
he feels how paranoid we as parents have become to feel so proud accomplishing this task - it felt as if
- always trying to locate where the family members we were given a big responsibility to handle. Then
are by either calling and checking or just tracking the came the air-conditioners and the whole fun of filling
phones. He feels those were the times when there was water went away! I still feel that the sleep we used to
so much trust and faith that wherever your child is he get in the cool breeze and slight drizzle of the water
or she is safe. splashing from the cooler was so much better and
sound then that we get now in an air-conditioned
Saurabh used to collect the cricketers pictures which room.
would come inside a chewing gum wrapper, then he
and his friends started collecting wwf cards and how Today we have so many ways of listening to music but
they would compete to see who has the rarest of rare I still have so many memories of how chitrahaar used
cards and show off their collection to others. In school to come and then rangoli started coming on Sundays.
he used to always share the lunch box with his friends How we used to wait for them as Wednesdays used
and that way have a variety of meals everyday. to be more of retro songs and fridays used to be the
latest songs.
Paromita used to collect lady birds in her lunch box
after finishing her lunch, as in her school she knew a Then I have clear memory of how we all used to take
spot where there were many ladybirds. She used to be bath early in the morning on Sundays as we used to
fascinated looking at them. Once on returning home watch Ramayan. There were strict instructions from
she forgot to set them free and when the maid opened grandma that everyone has to watch it and only after
her lunch box to clean she screamed with fear as she they have taken bath and no shoes were allowed
wasn’t expecting things flying out when she opens the in the drawing room where the tv was placed.I still
lunch box. The other thing she fondly remembers is remember that when we got VCR, I started recording
writing letters for her grandma. Sometimes she would Mahabharat. Then later on, me and my grandma
write in circles as in she would first make a hazy used to watch it again and again and she would
drawing of a spiral on the page and then write on discuss what happened and what all will happen next.
it. That way it used to look very pretty and would get
slightly more complicated to read the letter too. I think if everyone would write down the funny stories
from their own childhoods, the world would be a
For me I have my bunch of favorite memories too. I better place.
fondly remember going to my maternal grandparents
house by train. It used to be an overnight train and - Jeff Kinney
how much excitement we used to feel. We would
make sure we pack few board games and cards for Its been a pleasure sharing everyone’s thoughts and
the journey. The moment the train would start we (me my own favorite childhood memories with you all. Am
and my brother) would start feeling hungry and ask sure you too are feeling nostalgic remembering your
mom to take out the poori aloo she had packed for own favorite childhood memories and there is a smile
the journey. My mom’s cousins would come mid way on your face just remembering them.
at the Gwalior station with a flask of tea and samosas
and some sandwiches. As in Gwalior the train would -By Madhulika Chaturvedi

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they are extremely short handed. This year 2022
WHERE IS MY REFUND filing season will be like no other. This year there

are additional reporting requirements for stimulus
payments or complicated child tax credits.
My five-year-old son IRS prepaid portion of the expanded credits in
asks some tough monthly installments during 2021. While this put
question at home. some extra money for many families, it also shrink
That of course puts refunds of many filers. Congress has frequently
a smile in my face changed child tax credit in the past ranging from
especially when you $1,000- $3,000 for 2021. It is estimated that
return home from hard 2022 child tax credit will drop to $2,000 and
day of work. One day $1,000 after 2025, unless congress act on it
he asked me, “Dad, again.
when there were no
people in earth, how Sometimes you might think that your refund will
was that first person be quick if you efile your tax return early, but
created”? Other questions he repeatedly asks research has shown both filing return late or
me is, “why do we have to give our money to early could delay your refund. Sometimes being
Biden?”. I told him that Biden uses our money an early filer works against you. Changes to the
to provide funding for education, building roads, tax code or procedures often happen at the last
improving infrastructure etc. He said, “dad, if you minute, and refunds can be delayed while the
give little my little your hard-earned money like IRS updates tax software. These delays could be
this, it could be huge money that you would end minimized by waiting to file the return until the
up giving lots of lots of money away in long run. second or third week of the year. IRS new update
We could have used that money for us because can affect early filers negatively. Filing at the last
you always tell we don’t have money every time minute can also delay your return, especially
I need a toy. I will tell you some of the things when volume of return is very high during the last
kids says are amazing. When my refund of 6K for minute as everyone is trying to file it at the same
Tax year 2020 is still held by IRS for no reason, I time. Late filing also increases the possibility of

didn’t have an audacity to go to him and tell him being a victim to identity theft, where someone
my situation because I was not ready to answer could use your Social Security number to file a
his tough questions. When I paid tax to IRS this fake return and claim a refund.
year, IRS took it off my bank account in the matter
of few minutes upon e filing my return. The IRS delays processing returns bearing a Social
Security number that has already been filed, so if
The IRS issues more than 9 out of 10 refunds you file first, the thief will be out of luck. If the thief
in less than 21 days. However, it’s possible your files first, your refund can be delayed for several
tax return may require additional review and take months while the IRS verifies your information
longer.” This line is quoted in However, in and tracks down the fraudulent return.
2020 IRS is seriously behind of issuing refunds for
many taxpayers. Every year millions of Americans By: Diwas Dhungel,
file tax returns with IRS Many tax filers are still Senior Director, Perfect Tax & Finance
waiting for their refunds for 2020. IRS claims that May 2022

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY a dig at superstitions, numerology being one of
them, he changed his belief. With ‘Student Of
KARAN JOHAR The Year’ Karan made a bold move by casting
three newcomers, Siddharth Malhotra, Alia Bhatt,
and Varun Dhawan.
May 25, 1972
Johar’s movies are marked with aesthetic
beauty as far as the sets and costumes go. His
longtime friend and associate Manish Malhotra
is no stranger to the world of design and one
can see the designer’s style impeccable style and
elegance in Johar’s movies. K Jo also hosts a
popular talk show, ‘Kofee with Karan’ and has
had conversations with Bollywood’s most sought-
after celebrities. Besides ‘Kofee with Karan’, Johar
also has appeared as a judge in other TV shows
such as ‘Jhalak Dikhla Ja’, ‘India’s Got Talent’,
‘India’s Next1 Superstars’ being some of them.
During the pandemic, K Jo, always the astute
businessperson has also made his mark on the
OTT platforms. ‘Gunjan Saxena,’ and the more
Shiny gossamer threads of fantasies, endless recent ‘Gehrayiyan’ were produced by Johar’s
colorful rows of imagination and a world Dharma productions. He has several films and
where dramas take place in designer clothing serials planned for release on Amazon Prime in
and glamorous make up. That is the world of the near future and that might be something to
Bollywood mainstream and who is complaining?! watch for.
Films are meant to entertain along with educate.
They are meant to capture our imagination Some trivia on one of India’s most glamorous
besides showing us the mirror of reality. And maximalist as we wish him the very best as he
when one can weave real life situations of birth, enters the golden years:
growth, success, love and romance achievement,
failure, joy, disappointment and even death • The character of Sharukh Khan in ‘Kal Ho..’
with an aesthetic sense, melodious music, and was loosely inspired by Yash Johar, Karan’s
beautiful actors one has an unbeatable formula father, who was being treated in New York at
for success. And that formula is perfected by that time for his illness.
producer, director, television personality Karan
Johar, popularly known as K Jo. ‘Johar’ or • Karan regards, Kajol as his lucky charm. The
‘Jauhar’ in Hindi is a term used for a jeweler. And ebullient actor makes an appearance here
just like a jeweler polishes a stone to perfection and there in all his films.
so that it can shine in its own beauty, K Jo has
helped many actors perform their best onscreen. • Karan has a Master’s degree in French and
K Jo started his career as a director with the film can speak the language fluently.
‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai,’ starring Sharukh Khan,
Kajol and Rani Mukherjee. The film earned him • After overhearing a couple in a restaurant
a National Award for wholesome entertainment. who were getting separated K Jo decided to
Both ‘My Name Is Khan’, a social drama and the make ‘Kabhi Alvida..’
spy-thriller with copious amounts of patriotism,
‘Raazi’ earned him Filmfare awards for best • K Jo is the only Indian to be invited to the
director His subsequent films, ‘Kabhi Khushi London Olympics besides former PM Shri
Kabhi Gham’, ‘Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna’ were both Manmohan Singh.
commercial and critical success. It is interesting
to note that, up until 2016 Johar believed in
numerology. His films started with ‘K.’ But after
watching ‘Lage Raho Munnabhai’, which takes

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back. With commercially super successful films
HAPPY BIRTHDAY such as ‘Beta,’ ‘Hum Apke Hain Kaun,’ “Dil
To Pagal Hai,’ she established herself as a
MADHURI DIXIT bankable star and the heartthrob of many a male
heart. ‘Ram Lakhan,’ ‘Thanedar,’ ‘Saajan’ and
May 15, 1967 ‘Khalnayak’ only consolidated her position.
She later started experimenting in her roles
and gave a sterling performance as a revenge
seeking widow in ‘Anjaam,’ and social dramas
like ‘Lajja’ and ‘Mrityudand.’ After a memorable
performance as Chandramukhi in the movie
‘Devdas,’ Madhuri bid adieu to films to settle
down in blissful marriage to the US based Dr.
Sriram Nene. Her second innings started in
2007 with ‘Aaja Nachle’ when she returned to
India for good with her husband and 2 sons
Arin and Ryan. Since then, she has been starring
in Hindi and Marathi movies was still trying to
find a movie that really highlights her talents.
‘Fame Game’ the Netflix thriller series is where
she found her foothold again as far as movie
Born to a middle-class Maharashtrian family, performances are concerned. She plays the role
Madhuri rose to fame speedily and steadily. of a matured actor gone missing in the mystery
Madhuri enthralled movie-goers of the 1990’s thriller. Madhuri has made a name for herself in
and early 2000’s with her winsome smile and Television as an anchor, judge of multiple dance
classic beauty. But then that was simply the tip of reality show and cooking show with the famous
the iceberg. Madhuri, a trained dancer stole our chef Sanjeev Kapoor. In 2013, she launched
hearts with her twinkle toes in popular numbers her own online dance academy, ‘Dance with
such as ‘Ek, Do, Teen,’ ‘Dhak Karne Laga,’ ‘Bada Madhuri’ where users get an opportunity to learn
Dukh deena,’ ‘Choli Ke Peeche,’ ‘Chane Ke Khet various dance forms and also get one-on-one
Mein’,’Humko aaj Kal Hai,’ ‘Que Sera’ and even dance lessons. Madhuri also is very busy with
the more recent ‘Aaja Nachle’ and ‘Ghar More several philanthropic activities in India. She also
Pardesiya.’ These are merely few of her dance champions the cause of the protection of Asian
numbers. Madhuri’s acting skills were no less. elephants.
She could carry a film off solely by her own talent.
One cannot forget her performances in movies Some trivia about the superstar as we wish her
like ‘Parinda,’ ‘Anjaam,’ ‘Lajja’ or Sanjay Leela another year of joy, health, and bliss:
Bhansali’s magnum opus ‘Devdas.’ Madhuri • Madhuri won a Kathak scholarship when she
came into the movies at a time when Sridevi was merely 9 years old.
arguably the first female superstar was ruling the
roost. It was indeed a tough task to make a name • Her costume for ‘Kahe Ched Mohe’ weighed
and space for a petite demure girl that Madhuri 30 kilograms.
was. Bur sheer hard work, determination and • Madhuri wanted to become a microbiologist
perhaps, proper guidance and mentorship paved or pathologist.
the way for our ‘Dil To Paagal Hai’ girl. So, who
is the ‘Dhak Dhak’ girl’s dance idol? Madhuri • The famous painter M.F. Hussein was so
says that she wished she had worked with smitten by her beauty that he watched her
Vyjayantimala and Gene Kelly. Mala according ‘Hum Apke...’ 67 times. He also booked an
to Madhuri completely changed the standard entire theater for her comeback flick, ‘Aaja
and style of dancing in Indian cinema. Nachle’.
Madhuri made her debut as lead in the drama
‘Abodh.’ ‘Tezaab’ gave her a much-needed
breakthrough. The ‘Dil’ star then never looked

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Listen to Kids Club with Ambreen Hasnat every
Wednesday from 3:00- 4:00 pm.
Click Here to Play

Click here to color

Did you Know?

If you want to wish your child a Happy Birthday,
Please send message to [email protected]/[email protected]
For all submissions of your kids talent: Poem, short stories, Jokes, Artwork please send
submissions to [email protected]/[email protected]

DesiPages DFW | May 2022 VOL 39 | 29

bollywood takies

this Month

watch Kangana after Angelina
Jolie played ‘Salt’ and the
more recent movie ‘Ava’ where
we saw Jessica as a troubled which is an ongoing production.
agent kicking butt and raising With ‘JJ’ Shalini marks her debut into
the bar with some solid action Hindi films. The music is by Vishal-
‘THAR’ starring father-son duo, Anil
Kapoor- Harshvardhan Kapoor is
‘DHAAKAD’ starring set to release on the OTT platform
Kangana Ranaut, Arjun Netflix, on May 6th. Anil plays the role
Rampal, Divya Dutta and of a cop who investigated a series of
Saswata Chatterjee is all set to murders in a sleepy desert town. The
release on May 20th. Kangana film stars Fatima Sana Shaikh and
faces off Rampal in the movie. Mukti Mohan. According to a recent
Going by the initial trailers of interview, Harsh says that he can
the movie, it promises to be make offbeat film choices due to his
an out and out action thriller. family’s background. He says he is
Kangana says that this is not emotionally and financially secure
just a benchmark film for er due to them and that gives him the
but also could be a turning freedom to work in movies of his
point for Indian cinema. She choice. Anil Kapoor Harsh made
dons the role of Agni, a highly his debut opposite Saiyami Kher in
trained deadly field agent with the movie ‘Mirzya.’ Going by the
a mission to gather intel and in action flick for more than 3 trailer the film promises to be a gritty
eliminate Rudraveer (Rampal). months. It will be interesting to revenge drama. During the shooting
Rudraveer is a human and see Ranveer Singh stars Fatima fell out of a truck! The director
arms trafficker who is off the in and as ‘JAYESHBHAI Raj Singh Chaudhry says that the
radar for a decade. The film JORDAR’ the son of a shoot was very tough with respect
has been directed by Razneesh traditional Gujarati sarpanch, to the terrain the film features an
Ghai. He has tried to raise the who believes in male-female 800-year-old monument which was
bar with this film by bringing equality. The film, produced impossible to reach. Interestingly the
in action directors from USA by Aditya Chopra stars Shalini crew built a road to access it and
and South Korea. HE says Pandey of ‘Arjun Reddy’ fame, then then the shot was taken. The
that there is a lack of women- along with Boman Irani and film also focusses on the desert as
centric action thrillers in the Supriya Pathak Shah. Divyang a character. Speaking of her co-star
Indian cinema scene and feels Thakkar, who mainly acts in anil Kapoor, Fatima says that it was
that ‘Dhakkad’ will set of a new Gujarati films has written and a great learning experience working
trend. Even famous stunts men directed this movie. The film with him. She says that he attracts
like Cameron Hilts and Sea- is a social comedy and based people like honey does to bees! Anil
Young Oh were onboarded. on female foeticide. The film is also in praise of Fatima’s talents
The film has been written by was announced in 2019 but
Ritesh Shah, who wrote the got postponed due to the
screenplay and dialogs for pandemic. Ranveer was last
films like ‘Kahani,’ ‘Pink’ and seen in the sportsdrama,’83’
‘Airlift.’ All the actors appearing and Shalini Pandey will be
as agents underwent training seen with Aamir Khan’s son
Junaid Khan in ‘Maharaja’

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he success a rich repertoire of ragas and talas with intricate
of the films layas and brighas or ghamaks which could
T‘Bahubalis,’ transport listeners to a world different from the
‘Pushpa,’ “KGFs’ one they lived in. Composers from both the South
all have gone to and the North experimented with ragas by fusing
prove that the face them together and setting them to attractive
of Indian cinema tala patterns and if the singer could, embellished
is changing . The them with vocals, all creating masterpieces worth
success of regional revisiting again and again.
stories only reiterates
the fact that the
spirit of Indian fabric
is woven all across
the country and can
be designed by anybody, really. Hindi being the
language spoken across most states obviously
has larger viewership and regional stories retold
in Hindi therefore have a greater reach. There are
many regional movies that have been remade in
Hindi and several Hindi movies have been remade
in other Indian languages as well. Classics such
as ‘Deewar’ and ‘Zanjeer’ were successfully
made in Tamil cinema, and we have seen movies
like ‘Shankarabharanam’ and ‘Manichitrathazhu’
remade into Hindi as well. But probably we are A composition that comes to mind invariably
seeing actors from regional movies more readily is the song ‘Kuhu kuhu bole koyaliya,’ The song
accepted than before, especially from the features in the 1958 film ‘Suvarna Sundari’. A
Southern movie industry. And their music too. The ragmala comprising of the ragas Sohni, Malhar,
success of ‘Why this Kolaveri’ and ‘Naatu naatu’ Jaunpuri and Yamn Kalyani. The film is a remake
simply goes to prove that music regional or of the Telugu classic of the same name. the film
otherwise is here to stay. was simultaneously shot in Tamil and Telugu with
Gemini Ganesan and A. Nageswara Rao as the
But then this is not new. Songs from Hindi cinema male leads and Anjali devi as the female lead in
have made their way to Southern films and visa both the versions. The Telugu version was later
versa even during the golden age of Bollywood. dubbed in Hindi and became a swashbuckling
There are songs in Bengali also that have made hit. Th film director Adi Narayan Rao composed
their way into Hindi films, let me hasten to add the music as well. Lata Mangeshkar requested to
and that is partly also due to the fact that film reproduce the movie and the music in Hindi. The
directors and music composers from Bengal ruled Tamil and the Telugu versions of the song ‘Kuhu’
the Hindi music industry during that period and are’ Haayi Haayigaa Aamani Saage” in telugu
the Indian audience got to experience and enjoy and “Thesulaavudhe Then Malaraale”. The Tamil
the rich culture and folk music of Bengal. and the Telugu versions were sung by Ghantasala
and Jikki and the Hindi version was sung by
Almost all of AR Rehman’s songs in the 90’s made Mohammed Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar. Some
in Tamil for that audience were remade in Hindi. credit the female voice in Tamil to P. Susheela,
Songs from the film ‘Roja’ and ‘Bombay’ are but on hearing the version it seems like Jikki sang
popular in Tamil and in Hindi as well. So, what both the versions.
facilitates remakes of songs? In the golden era
songs were largely based on classical music. The It is a brilliant composition indeed and Adi
two branches of Indian classical music, Carnatic Narayan Rao excels in the arrangement of music
in the south and Hindustani in the north provided and the swara patterns in the song. He is credited

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CONTRIBUTION to have brought Hindustani music into the South per day with perfection, SPB as he is popularly

Indian music industry. The delicate murkis and the known adds a unique stylish way of delivering the
speed at which the song is composed deserves song to suit Rajnikant.
special notice. Skipping from one raga to another
the singers in all three languages have done IIt is not easy to pan songs from one movie industry
supreme justice to the composition. The Telugu to another as the cultures wary and the classical
and the Tamil version have a certain leisure about music styles of both South and north are quite
them, it is in the rendering. Contrarily, one can different in styles. What is Yaman in Hindustani
feel the excitement and enthusiasm in Lata and may sound like Yaman Kalyani in Carnatic, and
Rafi’s voice. Ghantasala’s voice and control although the swaras are the same the prayog or
deserves a mention. Gifted with a clear diction interpretation of the swaras differ. The ghamakas
and a voice with the timbre of a bronze vessel, his or oscillating swaras in Carnatic music form
voice reverberates through the brighas. The film the main element of a composition. Hindustani
has several other memorable numbers and is over music focusses on the melody of the raga. So,
all an entertaining fantasy movie as well. it is difficult for a composition from the South
to be remade in Bollywood. If one observes the
The movie ‘Sadma,’ is the remake of the Tamil cult music of A.R. Rehman, he uses ragas that can be
classic ‘Moondram Pirai (The 3rd quarter of the easily panned to Bollywood, and this was his style
moon)’. Starring the versatile Kamalahasan and right from the very beginning. The use of western
the effervescent Sridevi, the film was well loved elements, whether in the form of musical phrases
by audiences across India. The music for the or instruments plays a vital role in panning the
movie was composed by Ilayaraja, often known as music to suit both regions.
Isaignani (musical genius). He is often addressed
as Maestro by the London Philharmonic. Raja is Recently we have seen songs from ‘Pushpa’
also credited with bringing western music in a capture the imagination of audiences very well.
sensible manner into south Indian movies. It is The song ‘Srivalli’ is based on ‘Harikhamboji’/’Misra
interesting to note here that many Bollywood Khamaj. It is important to note here that in film
directors plagiarized his compositions and walked music, the song doesn’t always have to follow
away with rewards! ‘Surmai Akhiyon mein’ sung so the notes exactly as the raga and deviations are
soothingly by K.J Yesudas, remains one of the finest allowed. Sid Sriram has sung both the Telugu
lullabies in Indian cinema to date. Raja also used and Tamil versions of the song, while Javed Ali
the melodious voice of Suresh Wadkar for two of croons to this number, composed by Deviprasad.
his songs. One of them is ‘Aye Zindagi Gale Laga While the song became a rage in Telugu and
Le.’ The song used in the situation in the Tamil film is Tamil, itis worthy to note that Javed Ali’s version
has gone viral as well. The hold Sid Sriram has
over the notes is a delight to experience. As a
singer, I feel that the leisurely speed of the song
allows for interesting experimentation and Sriram
does that with absolute aplomb. His incredible
vocal range, coupled with an open throated
soulful voice carries this song to a cult status no
doubt. His style is untouched by ‘filminess’ and
his fresh approach towards music is indeed his
specialty. Javed Ali’s approach towards the song
seems to be different. He has modulated his
voice to suit the rough character of Allu Arjun.
He has layered and textured his voice as well,
‘Poongaatru puthithanadhu’ and the composition unlike Sriram who focusses primarily on the lyrics
is entirely different from ‘Aye Zindagi.’ This Hindi and the tiny embellishments along the way. My
song is a remake of yet another Raja classic, ’En personal favorite is Sriram. Having heard several
Vaanile varum anbe vaa.’ This song featured in of his other numbers, one comes to expect the
a Rajnikant film called ‘Thambikku endha ooru.” freshness that he has to offer. I have been in love
Although the tunes are the same, the actors are with Javed Ali’s voice ever since he sang, ‘Jashn-
different. The situation is also different and so the e-bahara’ form Jodha Akbar. My personal opinion
songs have entirely different appeals. The Tamil is that he shines in songs that are Sufi-based. His
version of the song was sung by the greatly missed voice opens up on those occasions and touches
S.P. Balasubramanian. Known for his vocal range your heart deeply. But Srivalli will be wooed more
and his capacity to record as many as 20 songs by Sriram rather than Ali on this occasion!

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SARA TENDULKAR, the daughter of Sachin Tendulkar is likely
to enter into films, it is rumored. Stunning to look at, Sara has already
made a name for herself as a foodie and a traveler on the Social
media. Sara has recently made her modelling debut as well. Twenty-
four-year-old Sara is a graduate of the London College of medicine.
She has over a million followers on Instagram and is loved for her
sense of style. She debuted as a model for the international brand,
Self-Portrait, a designer clothing brand. Sara looks to enter Bollywood
with a bang some sources reveal. She has been taking acting lessons
lately. Sara who keeps a low profile, is touted to be very talented and
has the full support of her parents Sachin and Anjali Tendulkar as well.

TWINKLE KHANNA, wife of Akshay Kumar and daughter
of Rajesh and Dimple Khanna is well known for being an interior
designer, columnist ad author. Her book, Mrs. Funnybones hit
the number 2 position in the Nielsen best seller list. Her book
Pyjamas are forgiving which was releases in 2018 hit the Nielsen
List at the 1st position, making Khanna one of the most read
female authors in India. Although she did not make it big as an
actor in Bollywood, Twinkle has produced several films which has
starred her husband Akshay, notable among them being ‘Patiala
House,’ ‘Padman’ and ‘Holiday: A soldier is never off-duty.’
The ‘Barsaat’ girl’s short story ‘Salaam Noni Appa’ from her
book, ‘The Legend of Lakshmi Prasad’ is to be adopted as
a film. Twinkle holds a strong Social media presence and
revealed in her Twitter account that Applause Entertainment,
Ellipsis Entertainment, and her own Mrs Funnybones Movies
will co-produce this yet to be titled film. The Legend of Lakshmi
Prasad is a collection of 4 short stories on feminism and was
published in 2016. The character ‘Noni Appa’ is loosely based on Twinkle’s grandmother according to her.

THE IIFA AWARDS have been announced! The awards are created
by Wizcraft Entertainment Company, an event management company.
They were first announced in the year 2000 and recognizes excellence
in India cinema. The first award went to the Aishwarya- Salman- Devgn
starrer, ‘Hum Dil De Chuke Hain Sanam.’ Films that have won in the past
include, ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, ‘Queen’, ‘Bajrangi Bhaijan’, ‘Raazi’ and
‘Kabir Singh’. These awards are voted online by fans and the ceremony
is held in different countries every year. The technical awards for the year
2022 were announced on their Instagram handle and Vicky Kaushal’s
‘Sardar Uddham Singh’ is leading the pack. ‘Uddham Singh’ has won three
awards including awards for best cinematography, best visuals, and best
editing. Katrina, wife of Vicky Kaushal took to her Insta handle and shared the link to the awards. This
year’s award ceremony will be held at Etihad arena, Abu Dhabi, UAE. Salman Khan, Ritesh Deshmukh,
and Maniesh Paul will host the ceremony. Dhanush and Sara Ali Khan’s ‘Atrangi Re’ is at 2nd position
with two awards, best choreography for the song ‘Chakachak’ and best background score, A.R. Rehman.
Other winners in different categories include the movies, ‘Shershah’, ‘Thappad’, ‘83’ and ‘Tanhaji’.

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goodreads (FICTION LOVE STORY PART 2) Tears flowed down Tanvi’s cheek like an


overflowing river. Ved was controlling his emotions,
as he continued to hold her tightly and whispered
again. ‘’I’m sorry, I know I will regret this but I
also know its in our best interests”, he cried.
Tanvi and Ved continued to meet and savor time
together knowing it was short-lived. They had
no future but enjoyed the beauty of the present
moment. Time flew and soon it was December
31 2000, one year since they met. At this New
Year party, they stayed away from the loud music
and the dance floor. They walked on the beach
hand-in-hand, under the moonlit sky, knowing
that it would be their last new year together.
2001 began with a bang as the sky exploded
with a colorful fireworks display. Tanvi’s family
had to make a difficult decision to demolish their
“Tanvi, mine is a family-owned saree business that home and build apartments. Tanvi was sad to
has been successful for many generations. I come think that her home and her garden of love would
from a distinguished lineage of brahmins. My family soon be a memory, just like Ved’s love. Ved had
will never accept a non-brahmin as their daughter- come to say goodbye as he headed back to his
in-law. That is the bitter truth”, he choked. “I would hometown and family business. His parting gift
be painful for me to see you being disrespected had his special touch as always. It was a portfolio
for belonging to a different caste, he added. of photographs of Tanvi taken every season
“But Ved, what about true love and standing of 2000. Tanvi in different moods, poses and
up for what you want?” said Tanvi. “Tanvi, it’s attires all against the backdrop of her garden,
not my choice. My heart’s desire is to have you pictures that could be captured only by a lover!
forever but it’s a sacrifice I need to make for the Fast forwarding to 2010, Tanvi lives on the ground
sake of my family. We were raised to think of floor of her own apartment with her doting new
what is best for the family and not for ourselves.” husband. Tanvi managed to save the hibiscus plant,
“We would lead a miserable life and you will mango tree and garden bench, while the rest of the
never be accepted for who you are”, said Ved. garden was a verdant lawn, replacing the tall trees.
Ved’s sweet words of love now became a poison Every year, come March, Tanvi receives a special
arrow that pierced Tanvi’s heart. She had lived package with best compliments from Ved’s
her life in an urban bubble, in a cosmopolitan family. It’s a kancheevaram silk saree that Tanvi
metro that was light years ahead compared to knows is hand-picked by Ved just for her and
Ved’s family. They were stuck in time and had reflects the flavors of the seasons. Scents of
their sons, daughters and future generations the season from the rain, the trees and the flowers
locked in captivity. She wondered what was the that they smelt, felt and experienced together.
lesson she was learning from this experience, Colors that added vibrancy to their life’ story.
but knew she can no control over her destiny Tanvi and Ved could not spend a lifetime
when it also involved another. Casteism was still together but every year as they take in the
deep-rooted in parts of Indian society and that tantalizing scents of the seasons, it brings back a
moment Tanvi began to value her progressive rush of sweet memories that always stay alive…
parents even more than she did before.

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community that Under the leadership
of our CEO Mrs. Vaishali Thakkar
FunAsia is proud to announce one more
free service for the entire community

We would like to invite all nonprofit/religious
associations and medical professionals
to come and avail of the free community
platform on our Big FM -104.9FM
HD3 to present your associations or to

promote all your events and activities for
the entire community. We can run your
Namaste / Aadab events announcements/commercials for
free as well as, we can offer free hourly
slots for your temples/associations.
A big hello to the vibrant
community of the DFW metroplex. In this short amount of time, we have
received an overwhelming amount of
I am so glad that we are connecting with the support from the community for our
entire community on so many levels, and community segment. In the past few
“Desi Pages” is one of the best platforms weeks segment hosted many nonprofit
where we can bring the community together. associations like ISHA foundation for
their ‘save the soil campaign’ Sankara
The month of April was full of eye foundation, DCICA, and DFW

festivals such Gudi Padva/Ugadi, Hindu temple & Shirdi Sai temple
Chaitri Navratri, and Ram Navmi along with Fort worth Hindu temple

Many temples across the associations Once again, I am thankful to our dynamic
and temples celebrated Ram Navmi and CEO, Mrs. Vaishali Thakkar, for her
the Hindu new year in the month of April exceptional leadership in our endeavor to
reach out to the community. Once again,
The month of May will bring many many thanks to the community for continually
occasions for the community as Sri Sri Ravi supporting FunAsia Radio and helping
Shankar’s visit and the Art of living event us in ‘Bringing the Community Together
and also, we will celebrate Mother’s day

Always at community service-
Living in a culturally diverse nation such
as India, the people of the country get to
take part in each other’s festivals on a Neelam Dave
regular basis and often have fun times.

I am also delighted to inform our entire

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Guru Sanchita Bhattacharya, a joyous and caring Odissi Guru who is also an ambassador of
culture and humanitarian causes
By Parul Bhatia

I’ve had the good fortune to know Guru Sanchita and with an iron determination.
di personally and got the opportunity to meet her
first when she visited Dallas a few years back and Her Talim (Tutelage)
gave a workshop on Odissi. Being an Odissi danc- A daughter of a dancer mother and learned
er myself, I was thrilled at this prospect of learning philosopher & Kriya Yogi father (Grihi Sanyasi),
an Odissi piece from a Guru from India - we were Sanchita has inculcated the ethos and training of
taught an abhinaya (acting) piece and a Pallavi dance from the age of 2 ½ by her mother. Her real
(pure dance with expression) and the experience blooming in Odissi dance happened under the
of learn-ing from her was very enriching and able tutelage of a pioneer Guru and resurrector
endearing – one that I cherish very fondly. It was a doyen of Odissi, Padmashri Guru Maya Dhar
highly rewarding experience as first of all we were Raut. Sanchita also received blessings and some
learning original choreography from a Guru who tutelage from Padmabibhushan Guru Kelu Charan
had learned it first hand from her Guru and it was Mahapatra later.
markedly a joyous experience because Sanchita di
is a very personable person who enjoys teaching Sanchita had the privilege to learn theoretical
by offering her students a personal caring touch background and history of this dance from Dr. D.N.
– and this rapport that she establishes with her Patnaik. Finally, her philosophical and spiritual
students makes all the difference in one’s learning Guru, her father, lent refinement and grace to
process and motivation to perform. her persona, helping her understand the deeper
interpretation of Shastras, Yoga, Spirituality, and
Recently Sanchita di was in Dallas in April 2022 their correlation to dance and humanity at large.
to work with a troop of students – including me, This is highly evident in her performances, lectures,
and we are joining her in her Broadway style and her humanitarian projects.
performance in Las Vegas (July 1st through 3rd)
in the 42nd Annual North American Bengali Accolades
Conference (NABC) Festival. For this milestone
festival Guru Sanchita is bringing to life the story An article in New York Times, published on 4th
of the famous Draupadi in a Production titled April 2002 (Woodstock edition) praises this
Draupadi Phenomena which delineates the woman talented Guru: “Sanchita’s intricate footwork
who was Draupadi – quintessentially courageous, and expressive evocative style have brought her
multitalented, and a complete woman who was accolades; her dance has been described as
strong and caring and stood for justice unflinchingly perfection” and the praise continues and describes

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her as a phenomenon in the Odissi dance, a world
class soloist in the global arena who is taking
this dance form to towering heights across the its techniques, lyrical exposition, rich literature,
world. An indomitable daughter of the great soil spiritual connect, deeper levels of meaning and
of India, one of the oldest civilizations, she has our cultural philosophical assimilation, aiming at
been spreading the art form zealously with a force creating soloist performing artistes. Sanchita has
to reckon with, to an awestruck audiences across also been teaching world over through not only
continents. Performing not only in the crème de la work-shops / master classes / lecture demonstration
crème of festivals, but also in mainstream venues but also through internet virtual classes for the last
with mass viewers, thus expanding the horizon ten years, which is only now thought to be the way
and reach of the Indian dance form and culture at of life.
various levels, she is a true flag bearer of Indian
value system and cultural heritage. Propagation of Odissi

Making India proud worldwide, her journey, Guru Sanchita has immensely contributed in
especially since the last three decades, propagating Odissi dance among youth (in
encompasses performances as a soloist at the India and abroad) through her Master Classes,
greatest mainstream venues in the world like workshops, and lecture demonstrations. She was
Madison Square Garden in New York, The Ford invited as the guest lecturer in 2003 (among a
Amphitheatre in Hollywood, Esplanade Theatre galaxy of star lecturers like Ustad Zakir Hussain,
in Singapore, Toledo theatre Spain (where she Jane Fonda, Bickram Chow-dhury, Ballerina
performed duet with Tap & Flamenco and trio as Margie Gillis etc) to world’s largest centre, The
finale), the International Ko Andu Arts Fes-tival in Omega Centre, for continuing education in NY
Taiwan, World Music festival in Hull – UK and many (which gets students from all over the world) to
more. She also mesmerised the audience at the teach not only Odissi, but the universal humanitar-
top-notch festivals and venues in India including ian values our rich culture teaches and withholds.
the Khajuraho Festival, Kalidas Sammelan, the In the USA, apart from her regular classes in
Jag-annath Temple Puri, Shree Krishna Gana Raleigh Durham, Dallas, Portland etc, Sanchita
Sabha Chennai, Mahari Festival, Kumar Gandharv lec-tures have been demonstrated at the top-
Festival, Sankat Mochan Festival – Varanasi, Dover notch Universities and Colleges like Duke, the
Lane Festival in Kolkata and many more. She has Universities of North Carolina, Iowa, Minnesota,
spread her wings across the continents for over Susquehanna, Milwaukee, Escondido (Mexico
three decades not only in India but in countries like Border), Vassar College (Ivy league) Quaker
USA, Canada, European Union, United Kingdom, Schools, Antioch schools and college etc. In China
China, Singapore, Taiwan and in many virgin she has taught and conducted master classes for
hitherto unknown terri-tories and has created a more than 300 hundred students for Guangzhou
niche for her art form and herself by sheer dint of University of Dance, Beijing, Harbin, Chongqing,
her breathtaking unique per-formances. Chengdu generating immense interest, popularity,

Sanchita Dance Foundation admiration, and fan following for Odissi dance
(and Indian culture in general). She also regularly
Sanchita is the founder of Sanchita Dance works with Spicmacay and schools and colleges in
Foundation, a cultural institute with a philanthropic India. Cutting across diverse levels and ethnicities
edge where in talented yet financially challenged (most of them being virgin territories) her Master
girls are given free of cost, world class talim classes and lecture demonstrations have resulted
(education) in Odissi and their expenses - related in some of the students seriously pursuing Odissi,
to dance such as costume, music etc. - are taken thus truly furthering our culture in India and Abroad.
care by the founda-tion. Besides Sanchita and
the Foundation grooms talented young dancers According to Edmonton Journal, published on 4th
and also upcoming profes-sionals in Odissi, June 2004 “she has become an ambassador for
providing them a holistic perspective to the dance, Odissi dance around the world” and continues to
express that Sanchita’s performance is a confluence

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standing for establishing women’s dignity and
equality of status and other humanitarian causes
that have established her as a progressive thinker
and a social activist and a humanist to the core.
of sensitivity, spirituality, classical finesse, lyrical
grace, and elegance exuding from the body as well Press Remarks
as the nimble footwork, with a complete command As world-renowned Odissi dancer Sanchita
over the rhythmic intricacies. Over and above her Bhattacharya has enthralled the audience with her
ethereal stage presence is divine, making her ‘Moksha’ rendition, her eyes glistened in devotion.
repertoires, a truly memorable experience for the Her connection to God was profound yet subtle,
audience. Her scholarly persona together with as she emoted using her eyes. Embodying grace,
the kindness and compassion of her soul gets subtlety and vitality, the danseuse, led the audience
reflected in her performanc-es transcending the through a spiritual path.
boundaries of the stage transforming the audience
to a higher spiritual yogic trance. With her deep Sanchita’s intricate footwork and expressive
knowledge and understanding of the scriptures, evocative style have brought her accolades; her
she creates a symbiotic synergy when she explains dance has been described as perfection.
the dance number and its multiple levels of inner
meaning, prior to her performances, thus help-ing Sculpturesque postures of tribhanga, intricate
the audience to delve in the depth of the same. footwork, chowka, cheer, lakhi, matabari and
The audience is literally left in a trance as they baitha, these six different stages of geometrical
com-pletely engrossed and involved (even those stances were depicted with outstanding skill,
who are non-connoisseurs). She carries them with beauty, and perfection
her making them emote with her, cry and laugh The abhinay charged with emotions where she
and a plethora of emotions. Veteran dance critic enacted Draupadi, Duryadhan, Dushasan,
Smt. Sandhya Sen wrote about her “In fact, the Yudhisteir and Krishna brought each character
aesthetic union of Tyar Onga and introspective alive. Durga was the climax.
attitude of Shastriya – Dha-ya was impregnated
with the assurance of the power in her to carry on Odissi Danseuse Sanchita Bhattacharya’s oozed
the lofty tradition of Odissi dance” in Patrika (30th devotion and “sringer (aesthetic beauty and love)
March -2008) mesmerizing the connoisseur audience. ----in her
pallavi (pure dance) the postures, chouk (basic
Awards and Felicitations stance), hand gestures, attractive presentation,

Guru Sanchita Bhattacharya has been bestowed eye neck and movements everything was perfectly
with “Cultural Ambassador of India” award by balanced and brought out ultimate grace”
Senator John G Pappageorge of USA, the coveted (translation from Hindi version).
Maihar Samman in 2018 from GPCORF and Sanchita Bhattacharya had emotions expressions,
Ministry of Culture – Govt. Of Odisha, Shree movements, and postures, which make the full
Kshetra Mahari (Devadasi) from Shree Kshetra episode of Dasavatar, come alive to the audience”
Hanuman Jayanti Committee of Shri Jagannath (from Hindi version).
Temple Puri, Pratibha Samman by Ministry of
Culture and Tourism Odisha, Bharat Nirman Award Her graceful postures, ultimate devotion, and
and many more. Her list of awards far exceeds powerful depiction of characters make the
the achievements of even very highly recognized audience spellbound.
dancers. She has received rewards and recognition
from India’s Cultural Ministry, from Philanthropic
organizations, Honorary doctrate from Hindustan
Art and Music Society, and a myriad other award.
Using dance as her tool, Sanchita di regularly
works with challenged and plebeian children,

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bollywood NEWS

Kangana Ranaut Akshay Kumar

With ‘Dhakkad’ Kangana joins Scarlet Johansen, The action super star of Bollywood, Akshay Kumar,
Angelina Jolie and Jessica Chastain as a butt- completes three decades of being in the industry.
kicking, ruthless female spy. With ‘Tiku Weds The ‘Khiladi’ actor took to social media to thank
Sheru’ she turns a producer. The film is slated his countless fans for the love they have showered
to release on Amazon Prime. The film stars on him for all these years. The onslaught of the
Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Avneet Kaur in the lead Khans left many an aspiring star behind but the
roles and is directed by the director of ‘Revolver ‘Padman’actor has remained steady in his growth
Rani’ Sai Kabir. It is interesting to note that while and only grown from strength to strength.
on the sets of the film, Kangana found a ‘rare
gem,’ legendary director Bimal Roy’s camera. With ‘Prithviraj’ in the horizon, the producers Yash
She thanked the Roy family for allowing her to Raj Films have celebrated the actor’s milestone
use the camera for filming her upcoming film event by launching a new poster of the historical
‘Emergency.’ The fiery outspoken actor is of the with all of Akshay’s films featuring within the body
opinion that OTT have the ‘most democratic’ of the poster. Chandraprakash Dwivedi who is
platforms suitable for budding producers like known for directing the epic serial ‘Chanakya’
herself. ‘All you need is talent’ she opines. A has directed ‘Prithviraj.’ He is also well known for
poster with the lead actors in traditional Mughal directing ‘Pinjar,’ a film based on the Partition of
inspired costumes has been released giving fans a India. The poster features Akshay’s journey starting
la Mughal- E-Azam vibe. Kangana was awarded from the film, ’Saugandh’ to his upcoming release
with the Padmabhushan in November of 2021. ‘Prithviraj.’ Off late Akshay has been focusing on
Kangana had announced early last year that she films that have either a strong patriotic or a social
will be directing ‘Emergency’ based on the life of message. Apart from an ensemble cast featuring
former Indian Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi. She Sanjay Dutt and Sonu Sood, the film marks the
will be directing the film herself as she says that
‘No one can do it better.’ ‘Emergency’ will be debut of Miss World 2017, Manushi Chillar.
penned by Ritesh Shah who has films like ‘Pink,’ Prithviraj, which is a dream project for Dwivedi, is
‘Rocky Handsome’ and the ‘Kahani franchises’ being released on June 3.
to his credit. Ritesh also directs Kangana in
‘Dhakkad.’ Apart from ‘Dhakkad’ the ‘Queen’
actor will be seen in ‘Tejas’ as an air force pilot.
She will be reprising her role as The Rani Of
Jhansi in ‘Manikarnika: the Legend Of Didda.’

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Mother’s Day

By Parul Bhatia

a, Amma, Ammi, Mataji, Mumy, with love and selfless devotion, toiling to raise
Mama .. all these names are us a good human beings, bright students,
Mdifferent ways to address your responsible citizens, and compassionate
mother. The mother who gave you birth after adults. Parents make endeavors to raise their
nurturing you for months in her body, feeding children to become great leaders and valued

you, nourishing and cherishing you and then members of this society. Each parent dreams
came the day when out you flunged into this and hopes to raise happy and successful
world and were no longer tied to her umbilical children. Then the children grow up and the
cord. However even though the physical tie cycle continues.
to the cord ends, the emotional tie remains
as who can forget one’s own vessel of love, Today let us celebrate our mothers, our Aa-
where one grew from her own water and ees, our Janini, and our Ma-ees. Let us show

blood. That is why we also call Earth “Mother them that we too value them and care for
Earth” as it is she who is giving us the soil we them. A bouquet of flowers, a card, and a
walk on, the produce she nourishes, and the gift are symbolic of that love and assurance
air we breathe. that we too care for them. However that care
needs to be continual. A phone call which is
Once a year on May 8th we celebrate not rushed and which is eager to hear what
Mother’s Day to mark appreciation to the she has to say makes a wonderful gesture
woman who gave us birth, and sometimes which is a gift for each mom. When you share
also to a woman who may not have given us a memory of your mother from your point-of-

birth but may have raised us. The sentiment view, when you were a child or a teenager or
behind Mother’s Day is to officially mark adult, is what she too loves to hear as much
that gratitude for the woman who may have as you love to hear accounts of your own
birthed or raised us so as to celebrate her, the childhood stories. Moms too need our love
woman, who is our life giver and nurturer. and a hug gives her that assurance that she is
loved and cared for.
Mother Teresa is also one such Mother who

has helped thousands of orphans who had no
mother. A father can also be a Mother in the
way he takes care of his children. A farmer
who toils to raise the produce with his sweat
and blood is also a Mother. The point behind
celebrating this day is to show our deep
appreciation to the person who has raised us

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Here are some famous Mothers from
history: • LATEEF FATIMA
KHAN, mother of
• DAYA KAUR, mother of Geeta and Shah Rukh Khan
Babita Phogat
And here are some

• UJJALA PADUKONE, mother of more names of Mothers
Deepika Padukone through history:

• PUTLIBAI GANDHI, mother of Mahatma • JOSEPHINE BAKER adopted twelve
Gandhi children after World War II to make her home
• SWAROOPRANI THUSSU, mother of a model of world “brotherhood.” She’s
Jawaharlal Nehru known less for this, though, than for her

• VIDYAVATI, mother of Shaheed Bhagat career as a performer.
• PRABHAVATI DEVI, mother of Netaji • MARIE CURIE, known as the “Mother of
Subhas Chandra Bose Modern Physics,” was twice a Nobel Prize
• KAMALA NEHRU, mother of Indira winner (in different fields). Her daughter
Gandhi Irene also was awarded a Nobel Prize,
• HEERABEN MODI, mother of Prime sharing it with her mother.
Minister Narendra Modi

Kiran Bedi women’s suffrage leader and mother of
• TEJI BACHCHAN, mother of Amitabh eight; one daughter also became a leader
in the movement.

the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 for her
work as part of an order of nuns serving
in Calcutta.

as an early feminist; her daughter, Mary
Bachchan Shelley, wrote the novel Frankenstein.
Kapil Dev Nikhanj Citations:
• RAJNI TENDULKAR, mother of Sachin • India Today, 20 proud mothers of famous
Tendulkar Indians on Mother’s Day Lewis, Jone

• SHEVANTI MANGESHKAR, mother of Johnson. “Famous Mothers in History:
Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle Ancient Through Modern.” ThoughtCo,
• SUPRABHA RAY, mother of Satyajit Ray Feb. 16, 2021,

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Stars Reveal

he period of Pan-Indian cinema has arrived. irector of several films that touch the core
Basking in the success of KGF 2 is Sanjay Dutt. of our being is And L Rai. Be it ‘Tanu weds
TVeteran actor of many a Bollywood film, the DManu; ‘Ranjhnaa’ or his latest film ‘Atramgi
‘Rocky’ star made his debut into the South action- Re,’ Anand’s films touch a chord in your heart. Talking
drama franchise, KGF. KGF 2 has broken all records about his process about making a film, Anand says,’
and is the fastest film to enter the Rs 200 Crore club when I go for a new film, I have to be honest and
($26 million +) at the Indian box office. KGF 2 stars give it my best’. My only thought is that it has to be
Kannada stars Yash and Srinidhi Shetty. Sanjay Dutt as real to my technicians and actors as possible.’ His
plays the deadly antagonist, ‘Adheera’ and Raveena latest film, ‘Atramgi Re’ is based on mental health and
Tandon plays the role of the Indian Prime Minister. he drew a lot of dissension for the same. Expressing
disappointment at the criticism by film critics especially
Anand says, ‘We all want to sit in ahigh chair and
Speaking to a popular daily, the ‘Munnabhai’ star pass judgments. We have all grown up listening to
said frankly, “Hindi film industry has forgotten the stories about fairies, about Gods and Demons,
larger-than-life heroism and as such is losing out about superhumans and were never judgmental
on audiences from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, about them. I know everyone has a perspective,
and Rajasthan.” Speaking further, ‘Khalnayak’ Dutt but I find it difficult to understand whether they even
mentions that the Southern film industry has not lost care about the intention behind the story”. Anand is
touch with the concept of heroism. The ‘Sajan’ star happy that his ‘Atrangi Re’ was liked by the audience,
hastens to add that it doesn’t mean that ‘slice-of-life’ though. Talking about whether it would have made
films or rom-coms are bad. But he feels that the large a difference if the film was released in the theatres,
audiences from the Hindi-belt have been forgotten. Anand says, ‘With Atrangi Re the love we received
With the advent of corporatization of several film was overwhelming. I am very sure that it would have
companies the era of individual producers and crossed my expectations at the box office too.”Anand
financers has come to an end, according to Dutt. expressed his love for the music of A.R. Rehman
He says that” while the former is good, it should not and lyricist Irshad Kamil. He says that the heartbeat
interfere with individual tastes in movies.”The actor of the film is in the song, ’Tumhein mohabbat hai’.
draws comparison with SS Rajamouli, stating that His equation with Dhanush is also something to talk
there are producers in the South who have ‘fixed about. The South superstar has done two films with
faith’ in him, just like there were similar producers like Anand. Anand says that he is like a big brother to him.
Gulshan Rai, Yash Johar and Subhash Ghai in the The ‘Zero’ director has several releases coming up
Hindi film industry. Dutt rues the fact that while in the this year. He has ‘Rakhsbandhan’ and ‘Gorkha’ with
South they look at the film’s script on paper the Hindi Akshay Kumar. Also in line are ‘An Action Hero’ and
film industry looks at ‘recovery figures’ on paper. ‘Goodluck Jerry’.

The star has several releases including ‘Sadak 2’,
‘Prithviraj’, ‘The Good Maharajah’,’Shamshera’ and
‘Munnabhai 3’ being a few of them.

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pakistan corner
relief carvings, its calligraphic inscriptions in marble
and sandstone, its plaster decoration, and its glazed

In 1997, Qilal Rohtas was included in the World
Heritage Sites by the UNESCO, and since then it
has been an absolute must visit site for local as well
as foreign travelers. UNESCO described the Rohtas
Fort as an “exceptional example of Muslim military
architecture of South and Central Asia.”


The month of May marks the birthdays of some
Pakistan is home to some of the most beautiful extremely important people in the history of Pakistan
places in the world. Last month we talked about as well as some internationally acclaimed celebrities.
breathtaking spectacular valleys and the beautiful To name a few:
people of The Kalash Valleys. This month we will
talk about Rohtas Fort. - Saadat Hasan Manto (writer): May 11, 1912
- Meera (actor): May 12, 1977
Rohtas Fort or Qila Rohtas was built in the 16th - Bushra Ansari (actor, singer, anchor): May 15,
century by the emperor of Sur Dynasty, Sher Shah 1956
Suri, followed by his victory of Mughal emperor - Ali Zafar (Singer, actor): May 18, 1980
Humayun, in was strategically placed near -The Great Gama (Professional Wrestler): May
the City of Jehlum, in the province of Punjab, 22, 1878
Pakistan. It took Eight year to build this masterpiece - Sarfaraz Ahmed (cricketer): May 22, 1987
which is one of largest forts in the subcontinent and -Misbah-ul-Haq (cricketer): May 28, 1974
was the most formidable forts of its time. This fort
was never stormed by an army and it is remarkably EID MUBARAK
in shape and intact.
May this Eid brings lots of joys to your life
Rohtas Fort is May this Eid brighten your
known for its days and your nights
massive defensive May you be blessed for the
walls, more than next whole year
four kilometers And may this prayers stays
in circumference, with you forever
lined with 68 EID MUBARAK!!
bastions and
empaled at A NAZM BY SUNEHRI
strategic points by KIRAN
12 monumental Kuch Sawal …
gateways. Rohtas Sawal nahi wabaal hotay hein
Fort is about 300 Ek Anjana sa jhanjaal hotay hein
feet above the surroundings and it covers total area Dil dukhanay mein kamaal hotay hein
of 12.63 acres. Rohtas Fort blended architectural Chor do unhain …
and artistic traditions from Turkey and the Indian Chor do unhain kay Kay waqt ka marham
subcontinent, thereby creating the model for Har sawal ka khud jawab daita hai
Mughal architecture and its subsequent refinements Har lamhay ka khud hisaab daita hai
and adaptations. The Rohtas fort consist of beautiful
decorative elements, especially its high- and low-

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BOOK REVIEW market for the past decade or so, starting from
Amish Tripathi’s trilogy to Devdutt Pattnaik’s
of Panchaali’s Mahabharat work. Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni’s feminized
retelling of the Mahabharat from Panchali’s
viewpoint falls under the same genre.

As the tales were written by men, the women
were often left on the sidelines, their opinions
and perspectives going unnoticed. This one-
sided narration was engraved so deeply
that I never questioned what the women
like Kunti , Gandhari, and the central
protagonist Paanchaali were going through
until I read Palace of Illusions aka Panchaali’s

“The Palace of IllusIons”

- By Madhavi Nair

Most of us recollect how streets across India
would be empty every Sunday morning This book tells Draupadi’s story, in
when Mahabharat aired on TV. BR Chopra, Draupadi’s words, through Draupadi’s
Mahabharat’s first episode was aired on eyes right from her birth to death
Doordarshan on 2nd October 1988. It had 94
episodes and the final installment of the series King Dhrupad performs a yagna to obtain a
was aired on 24th June 1990. People would son to avenge Drona. Through the yagna,
literally drop whatever they were doing to watch Dhrupad was bestowed with a son and a
the broadcast. This version of Mahabharat daughter. After his daughter emerged from
was heavy on testosterone. The story centered the holy fire there was a divine prophecy
around the male protagonist fighting valiant “Behold, we give you this girl, a gift beyond
wars and sacrificing kingdoms and riches for what you asked for, take good care of her,
penance in the jungles and far away lands. for she will change the course of history”.
The women folk were objects of beauty waiting This dark-complexioned girl will be the first of
for the brave males to return home from wars all women, and she will be the cause of the
or dutiful wives following the path that their destruction of many Kshatriyas”.
husbands choose.
The most controversial topic in the book
Most Indian myths and legends have been derived is Panchaali’s secret love for Karna. At the
from two of its epic poems, Mahabharata and swayamvar that King Dhrupad organized for
Ramayana, as well as from the ancient Hindu his daughter, other than Arjuna, Karna was the
texts, Puranas. Mythological fiction is a much- only one who had the ability to pierce the eye
loved genre that has been flooding the Indian of the rotating fish by looking at its reflection

DesiPages DFW | May 2022 VOL 39 | 49

in the water. Being known as just a charioteer’s son
he was disqualified from the contest, but Draupadi Their notions of honor, loyalty toward each
admits to being secretly in love with Karna and other, of reputation, were more important to
believes that a husband like Karna would not have them than my suffering.”
gambled her away in a game of dice as Yudhishtra A reader who has a deep knowledge of
did. Mahabharat may find it hard to accept this
After winning the contest the disguised Arjuna book due to controversial topics like the
along with his brothers Yudhisthir and Bhima move Draupadi – Karna love angle. But despite
towards the hut where mother Kunti is waiting for all shortcomings, this book is a keeper
them. He tells his mother Kunti that they get a since the interpretation of events from
special Bhiksha. Without looking at what exactly Draupadi’s standpoint is so unique. The
it is, Kunti instructed the five Pandava brothers to writing is very engaging. Though most of us
share among them. The five brothers had obeyed know the ending of the Mahabharat there
their mother’s words. So Draupadi had to marry is something in this book that holds your
each of the Pandava brothers. The book covers in attention.
detail how Draupadi felt about polyandry? It talks
about how she dealt with the marital arrangement The book tries to project that Draupadi had
of living with one husband every year and being to deal with all the emotions that we as
given a boon to be a virgin at the end of the year. women deal with in our daily lives - Love,
The relationship between Draupadi and her jealousy, conflict, pride, conflict, guilt,
mother-in-law, Kunti, could not have been simple and many more. Kudos to the author for
or straightforward. That Kunti had Draupadi share simplifying the epic so that it is relatable.
herself among five husbands would not have gone As a reader I was left with many questions
down well with Draupadi. The tension between the un-answered, should we applaud Panchaali
two women forms an important thread throughout for playing the role of a devoted wife who
the narrative of this book. overcame hardships in exile to build her
The book’s title, “The Palace of Illusions”, refers to palace of dreams? Why did she not revolt
the Pandavas palace at Indraprastha, built by the as the events unfolded? Was the only time
asura architect Maya. The palace where Draupadi that she found her voice when she was
felt secure and safe but this turned out to be an humiliated in court which led to the great
illusion. This is also the palace that angered the war between the brothers. These and many
Kauravas, where Duryodhana was insulted by more questions have fueled my desire
Draupadi, setting in motion events that would to read more books revolving around
culminate in the eighteen terrible days on the dusty Draupadi and other women protagonists in
battlefield of Kurukshetra thirteen years later. Mahabharat.
The most notable incident in Draupadi’s life is the
game of dice at Hastinapur where Yudhishthira Fun Facts
loses his possessions and wife, and she is • The author Chitra Banerjee’s short
humiliated by the Kaurava brothers and Karna. An story collection, Arranged Marriage won an
attempt is made by Dushasana to disrobe her but American Book Award in 1996, and two of
she is saved by divine intervention. What did she her novels (The Mistress of Spices and Sister
feel when she was disrobed in the sabha “All this of My Heart), as well as a short story The
time I’d believed in my power over my husbands. Word Love were adapted into films.
I’d believed that because they loved me they would • Jaya: An Illustrated Retelling Of The
do anything for me. But now I saw that though they Mahabharata by Devdutt Pattnaik is another
did love me—as much perhaps as any man can interesting take on Mahabharat
love—there were other things they loved more.

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