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Salmanayesha

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Posted: 29 August 2009 at 1:13am | IP Logged

It's Ramzan time

With the month of Ramzan starting, we asked some of our Muslim TV stars about their preparations:
 

Ali Asgar         
Though I'm working on my play, I'm fasting because Allah has given me the strength. I do not know how I'm doing but the strength automatically comes from inside. I believe Allah is testing us to know how strong we are mentally. In my family, my wife and I keep roza, my mom can't because she has diabetics, and my son is just five.
 
 

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Posted: 15 September 2009 at 6:59pm | IP Logged
 Chetan Hansraj

Chetan Hansraj idolises Brad Pitt

Chetan Hansraj, last seen in Iss Jungle Se Mujhe Bachao as one of the three finalists, is a major fitness freak. The Indian actor says Brad Pitt is his idol because of his lean and fit physique; he also used to admire Arnold Schwarzenegger.
 
 

Salmanayesha

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Salmanayesha

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Posted: 15 September 2009 at 7:05pm | IP Logged

Saakshi Tanwar judges the Fair and Lovely Scholarship

The Fair and Lovely Scholarship programme entered its 7th year with yet another set of wonderful young women striving to fulfill their dream of a higher education. The experience of the interview itself was one of awe for the many girls who came to Mumbai from far-flung areas of Maharashtra. For many, this was their first visit to a city and for some, the first time ever to experience such hospitality. But this did not deter them from their aim to put their best forward and compete to avail of the much-required scholarship to pursue their dream of earning a graduation, post-graduation or doctorate degree.

The esteemed panel consisting of Shaina NC, Kavita Karkare, Padmashri Lila Poonawala and Saakshi Tanwar amongst others were moved by some of the heart wrenching stories that scream of discrimination against the girl child. While for some it was hope against hope, as their parents who had the will to educate their child, were too poor to afford the fee. For some others it was not the fee that mattered but the cost of reaching their college or buying the required books for study that proved a daunting threat to their goals of empowerment through education.

Commenting on the initiative, Saakshi Tanwar said, "This is a very novel initiative of Fair and Lovely Foundation. The scholarship seems to be a deeply thought out programme. It has given me insights like the fact that often it is not the fee that stops a girl from seeking college education. For most of these students who come from small towns and villages, higher education means having to travel to the next town which could be about an hour or two."

Kavita Karkare chipped in to add, "Yes it is very unique to find a thoughtful scholarship. It has spotted the problem and recognized that it could be something as banal as the cost of bus fare she needs everyday that puts her off from seeking higher education.The Fair and Lovely Scholarship actually pays the student all costs from her travel, to books to hostel fees which in essence cover all costs really required to allow her to complete her education."

With the first of these interviews ending in Mumbai, Fair and Lovely Foundation kick starts the intensive process of short listing, with similar interviews scheduled across India in Lucknow, Indore, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Chennai. With 2009, the Fair and Lovely Scholarship enters its seventh year, reaching to the girls from economically underprivileged strata to live up to their dreams. The past has seen eminent personalities like Kiran Bedi, Air Marshal Padmavati Bandhopadyay, Captain Indrani Singh, singer Kavita Krishnamurthi, theatre and TV artist Juhi Babbar, author and writer Sivasankari, Advocate Pinky Anand, public prosecutor Rohini Salian, current home secretary Ms Chandra Iyengar, TV artist Rakshanda Khan, Director TISS, Dr. Parasuraman associated with the Fair and Lovely scholarship.

Link http://calcuttatube.com/saakshi-tanwar-judges-the-fair-and-lovely-scholarship/41060/

Salmanayesha

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Salmanayesha

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Posted: 15 September 2009 at 7:14pm | IP Logged
Heart of the matter

Saakshi Tanwar learnt the hard way that relationships are the only things that matter in one's life, not material gains... or losses
 

• I was returning… from my sister's place in Pathankot, Punjab to Delhi by train. I was carrying two bags with me, of which one bag had a lot of my valuables in it. Realising it would be difficult for me to travel alone with the luggage, my father offered to come along and help me carry the bags. When we got off at Delhi station, I realised that the bag with the valuables had been left behind in the train. My dad had assumed that it was with me and I had thought he was carrying it. I felt like I had lost everything I had.

• I behaved horribly… and said some very nasty things to my father after that. I blamed him completely for the loss.

• Later I locked myself… up in a room and continued brooding and sulking, after we reached home. My father remained completely quiet all through, he didn't respond at all to all my jibes and nasty remarks.

• My sister intervened… and she asked me just one question, "Was there anything in that bag that cannot be bought again?" The answer to that was obvious. Then she added that relationships once broken cannot be mended again. I instantly realised my horrible mistake and ran to my father, hugged him tight and sobbed my heart out. Once I had apologised to him, I felt better, and he accepted my apology instantly.

• I realised… that there is nothing more important than the relationships we make and are born with. And that we shouldn't do or say anything to ruin them but should preserve them with all we have as they're truly special.

• I truly understood… the importance of my parents that day. The saying goes: 'You don't understand the true value of your parents until you become one'. But I think I've realised their true worth before that. I understand that what they've done for me cannot be quantified.

• Material loss… is immaterial. Ever since this incident, I don't bother if I lose something or if something breaks in the house, as none of those things really matter. All that really matters to me now is the bond of love that I share with my parents and loved ones.

Salmanayesha

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Posted: 15 September 2009 at 7:35pm | IP Logged
We are drama queens: Saakshi Tanwar
 
A decade ago, Saakshi Tanwar was nobody to many, like most of us. Her father dreamt of her becoming a software consultant. And he invested heavily on her studies in in Software Engineering. She walked around as a free bird with no big dreams. She had options: if she would not be a software consultant, she would pursue either teaching students at a school or a job as civil servant.

And one day she met Ekta Kapoor (of the Balaji Telefilms). After which everything changed for her.

"I sill remember that day nine years ago. As I met Ekta, she offered me the lead role in her serial. I wasn't comfortable in the beginning. She warned me how my life would change in two weeks if I signed her offer," Saakshi reminiscenes.

And it did.

The idea was to accept the challenge of Ekta Kapoor. The debutante accepted the offer and got into her first serial. Her first step to showbiz was called "Kahaani Ghar Ghar kii" (KGGK)

Before KGGK, there were hardly any teleserials on Star Plus channel. A different genre of Hindi soaps including crime investigation and horror used to dominate the evening shows. The household stories of "normal families" were never the content for the television audience. With the arrival of KGGK and "Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi" – another Balaji production – and wave of such women-based family shows the idea of producing such shows was soon adopted by Sony Television, Star's archrival in India. In fact, KGGK was one of the very few teleserials and one by Ekta Kapoor that ran for eight straight years and got the highest TRPs for Star Plus so far. Now Star Plus is entirely known for daily soaps that are based on family dramas and are high on emotive story content. In Nepal, the audience limited itself to Pakistani teleserials shown on Nepal Television (NTV).



Saakshi, more popularly known as Parvati of KGGK, had her role in the serial well received not only in India but also in Nepal. Housewives started to gather around their television every evening and the story content started to dictate the norm and understanding of a middle class urban family. The wives, daughters and mothers fell in love with Tanwar's character, and they made sure that they didn't miss any of the episodes. And if they did, they made sure they were updated with either a re-run or from their "saheli." It was then began the battles between husband and wife, father and mother started to erupt in families across. Men could not stand the soaps while women could not stop gluing themselves to such shows. The intense attraction of the family dramas may have shifted to reality-based shows like Indian Idol and Rakhi ki Swayambher, but the tussle between the men and women for remote control still holds strong.

On her short visit to Kathmandu for the promotion of a women's accessory product, Saakshi Tanwar talked to Republica about the growing popularity of serials in India, its influences, her career and more.

Excerpts:

Republica: Just like in India, there are a lot of people in Nepal, too, who love watching Hindi serials. How do you guys make people addicted so much?

Saakshi: See, when KGGK started, we wanted to make sure that we touched everything that happened to one's life. We wanted to deal with human emotions and we wanted to give people different ways of coming out their problems. We largely succeeded. That's why we're loved by so many.

You're talking about going close to reality through serials. You mean to say all that emotional dramas keep on taking place in real life? Often, it's just tragedies in serials.

Don't you think human life is so full of tragedies and miseries? And when it comes to women, it's even more. Isn't it a truth that we go through difficult times more that we come across happiness?

But because of these serials, men are often upset with their wives. Channels like Star Plus and Sony show serials one after the other and mostly during the evenings and men don't get to grab the remote control.

If the remote control is left to your "home minister" just for the evening hours only, what's so wrong about it? [Laughs]. Women look after everything from dawn to night. So let her chill down during the evening, and let her relate her own life and problems to the serials.

You said the kind of family drama serials Star Plus has been coming up with helps people come out of their problems. But there have been much complaints that the same serials add mess to households.

How can you say that? We always show that no matter what, truth wins by the end.

It may be true. But those sisters-in-law, who never fought before, started fighting with each other because they are influenced by Parvati and Pallavi of KGGK going the opposite directions in the serial. They are influenced by their lifestyles, and the accommodation standards your serials often depict. Now they want highly embellished and sophisticated lifestyle, heavy makeup kits, jewelries like you all wear. Even in boutiques, women are found saying 'I want saris like Parvati and Prerana wear in their serials.'

Yes, it's true that women want to look like us, want to dress up stylishly like the actors do in the serial. But what's wrong about that? Women are often tagged with beauty and sensitivity, aren't they? And if so, we ought to be beautiful. Even men want their wives to be like Parvati, a dedicated wife, a good homemaker, a good daughter-in-law, and a responsible mother. But they forget to be like Om (Parvati's husband in KGGK) – a complete man in all disciplines. So if you behave like Parvati, your in-laws will get all what you want.

You talk about getting close to reality. Everything's portrayed so picture-perfect in the serials. But don't you think women in real life don't wake up wearing an embroidered sari on and in full makeup even when they are physically ill. Take yourself for example. You must've been 90 to 100 years in KGGK before the serial came to an end. And you still looked like you were in your mid-thirties when you already had you great grandson.

[Laughs aloud] See, somewhere one has to draw the line between fiction and reality. You can't bring a 90-year-old to do the role. Besides, as actors, we come at the last stage of filming. We do have our say but we don't poke into the ideas of producers and directors. All of us are given our jobs. We concentrate on that. Apart from that, there's always good and bad about everything. It's up to you to what you want to take up.

Why do you think almost all Indian serials are so women-oriented? Can't there be serials based on lifestyles of men?

We have to admit that women are very emotional. We're drama queens, and television is a medium for us to get inspiration. We can't be rational like men. We don't understand James Bond coming out and shooting here and there all the time. We want relief, and we look forward to relating ourselves to something that's close to us. So serials are the right platform for women to come up with all that they face in their lives. And there are other reality shows for men on various channels.

Okay, coming to your personal life, KKGK ended more than half a year ago. What next in your career now?

After working for eight years, I surely deserve some rest. I've already worked for Ashutosh Rana's upcoming film "Coffeehouse" and I'm doing the Crime against Women program in Doordarshan. I guess I may not be doing serials again because somewhere in life you need to move in another direction. Let the new generation follow our steps. I'm single and I hope to be like my character in real
life too.
 

Salmanayesha

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Salmanayesha

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Posted: 26 September 2009 at 12:16am | IP Logged

Where have all the vamps gone?
Vamp - that uniquely Indian word for women who are less than sweet and good, and often more than bold and scheming. We especially love her for the drama and excitement she adds to any Indian serial. We don't get to see as many vamps on TV anymore, but here's our list of favourites:

Anchint Kaur 

Anchint Kaur, Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii
Achint's most famous role was as the vamp, Pallavi, in Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii. But these kind of roles were her forte, as we saw in Ranbir Rano, Karam Apnaa Apnaa, Virrudh, Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, Kittie Party, and, in the early days, in Banegi Apni Baat, Swabhimaan, Saaya and Parchhaiyan. Achint also runs her own salon, where she her time away from acting. It's been a while seen we saw her in any serial.
 
 
 

Salmanayesha

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Salmanayesha

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Posted: 09 October 2009 at 11:26pm | IP Logged
Vamps gone good
 
After bitching about and plotting the downfall of the main protagonists on TV shows, these vamps have themselves ditched their negative images and gone good.
 
Kavita Kaushik

Kavita Kaushik

She did the negative role of Manya, a psycho lover who wanted to steal her man back, in Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii. She was well-appreciated for her insanity but, for a change, she is now famous as Haryanvi cop Chandramukhi Choutala in FIR. This character has turned to be a bigger hit for her than the earlier one.
 
 
Sweta Keswani

Sweta Keswani

She is known for her negative roles in Des Main Nikala Hoga Chand and Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii, for which she was loved and hated by fans. Now, she plays a bindass Punjabi kudi, Gudiya, in STAR Plus's Baa Bahoo Aur Baby. There has been a mixed reaction to her new role as her role in Kahaani... was more effective.
 
 
 
Sweta Kawatra

Sweta Kawatra

She became a household name as Pallavi Aggrawal of Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii, one of the most powerful vamps on TV. Now, she plays funny a Punjabi wife, Sonu Sweety, which is quite thanda compared to her earlier role.
 
 


Edited by Lubnavaishali - 09 October 2009 at 11:40pm

Salmanayesha

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Posted: 31 October 2009 at 11:21pm | IP Logged

Saakshi Tanwar and Ronit Roy in short film

In a tribute to Rabindranath Tagore on his 150th birth anniversary, TV stars will come together to make a film based on his short story, Kabuliwala.

Kabuliwala has been made into a Bollywood film in the past (starring veteran actor Balraj Sahni), but this time it is being re-made for a contemporary TV audience. In the short film, TV actors Ronit Roy and Saakshi Tanwar play a couple whose daughter befriends an Afghani who has come to Mumbai. Veteran actor Shahbaaz Khan plays the Kabuliwala.

Rohit Roy produces the film that will be helmed by Pankh director Sudipto Chattopadhaya. Sudipto was quoted as saying, "The story is inspired by Kabuliwala but it has a twist to it as the setting is contemporary. It is not a TV serial but a short film meant for TV, like the ones done by HBO."

The director said, "The film will first go to film festivals and will then be shown on TV. Since Rabindranath's 150th birth anniversary is approaching, it's our tribute to the man who has inspired generations." He added: "It will show the prejudice we still harbour on the basis of religion. The wife is played by Saakshi Tanwar and she suspects a man who comes from Kabul to be a Taliban terrorist."
 

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