- Vajpayee has passed away and my thoughts on him is that he is the “loveable loser.” A bit like Advani & Rahul Gandhi; these philosophical Brahmins are really no match for the Modi phenomenon. Vajpayee is a remnant of a simpler gentler India; Modi is Hindustan’s future. As we much as we are mourning a Nehruvian relic. Modi’s India is rapidly wisening up to her world role.
- As an aside I’m just increasingly shocked by how breathtaking the pace of change in India is. In the Pakistani higher circles there was always this assumption that the liberal elite of Pakistan (the 1,000 families) were the most Westernised (but Urduphile) segment of South Asia. That is rapidly beginning to change and huge swathes of the Indian upper classes are becoming “tanned white people.” Their accents, family structures, cultures are just Westernising and a good example is the Priyanka Chopra-Nick Jonas engagement. They probably represent this segment while Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma are the more desi side (the Khan-Kapoor family are somewhere in the middle, Kareena has just gone off on another jaunt with her besties).
- I’m just a Damad to Indian culture but I hope India doesn’t lose her soul in this rapid transformation (she has the highest growth rate in the world at 7.2% edging out Bangladesh at 7%).
- I am very passionate about Imran’s Khan need to redistrict Pakistan. We need a Pakistan of the Provinces. We have strong ethno-linguistic regions like the Punjab, Pashtunistan but we also have very strong provincial identities (Karachi must be set free from Sindh to become another Dubai) and Bahawalpur-Multan (one of the great tragedies of Independence is what happened to the Principalities of the Sub-continent and their ignominious fate by Indo-Pak).
- Sharing some trailers:
Nawazuddin Siddiqui is one of India’s best actors (it’s usually the case in Bollywood where the traditional Bollywood looks & acting ability are inversely correlated; Radhika Apte, Kangana Ranaut, Irfan Khan – Tabbu is probably an exception) and is such a strong reason as to why Sacred Games was the blockbuster as it was.
I have a mixed feelings on Shahid Kapoor as an actor but I guess this movie will be alot like Akshay Kumar’s film, Toilet. Bollywood’s increasingly important tradition of social film-making (Padman, Aamir Khan’s films) is welcome. I guess it’s also a way for aging actors to regain moral legitimacy and cultural relevance..
I’m a fan of Varun Dhawan, he seems to have completely eclipsed Sid Malhotra. However I see his acting style to be somewhat typecast as the spoilt Punjabi kid with comic overtones; he belongs in a joint family. Again I welcome any film that has a made in India message.
Finally if there are any Indian readers who are looking for good Pakistan dramas, I would recommend Suno Chanda. It’s a light-hearted fare about the Pakistani family and the attendant complications. Much as India is transforming; Pakistan takes pains to preserve the idealised Hindu-Arab cultural mix that is our wonderful Mughal-Muslim Republic.