Jalsa , Mumbai Dec 22, 2010 Wed 10 : 36 PM
My sincerest thank you’s for your kind words and affection for my Mother, in remembrance. It was endearing loving and most family like, even if extended. To have knowledge of the fact that there are many among us that share their feelings is by itself such a huge force. One that gives strength and courage to face another day another moment, in a harsh world.
Most of the day was spent figuring out what might I do for the coming days. Which projects to begin, which to reject and which to accept. I must admit that the options are not too frightening - the numbers and the interests are waning, but yes, there is the odd one that inspires and excites. And one of such was officially launched this evening - ‘Aarakshan’. Its a film by Prakash Jha of ‘Rajneeti’ fame and has a host of very talented people working together. Saif Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone, Manoj Bajpai, Pratik and written by Anjum Rajabali and Prakash in collaboration.
Aarakshan or Reservation, is a burning topic in the country, dealing with reservation quotas for those that are under privileged, from backward classes and who because of social and cultural constraints have never had opportunity to mix mingle educate themselves with those that are more privileged. They have little provision or occasion or sufficient finances to pursue what those that can do, and so the government passed a law in parliament which now protects them by assuring them a certain percentage of presence in all such institutions. It being 33 %.
The passage of such norms in the country created revolt among the student community and others as well. Particularly from those that came from privileged backgrounds. They argued that merit should be the yardstick for admissions and not a designated quota. Because what was happening was that a merit of 80-90% was being denied a seat because there wasn’t sufficient percentage left. The quota of 33 % assured even someone with merits of say 50%, much lower than the 90 percentage, to surpass him. The film deals with both aspects. Yes the quota for lesser merit may be argued and at the same time what does one do for those that have never had an opportunity to or privilege to even attempt a position. It is dramatic, pertinent and I think intelligently crafted. We start in Bhopal next month and on a non stop schedule would be ready for release on the 12th of August 2011. God willing ! Inshallah !!
Finding myself alone at home in the evening - the others all at work in different parts of the city - I watched film. Was keen to remain in the Da Vinci ( got the spelling right this time ) mode and so drew up the sequel, Angels and Demons ! Fascinating. Edgy and more exciting than the previous. Pertinent messaging of religion and science needing to exist together and that next time in Rome the statues and churches and monuments and every corner of the city needs to be looked at with a great deal of respect and some element of intrigue !!
Science has continuously defied religion and religion has not relented. For, there are elements in both that have no justifiable explanation. There is belief in one and belief of another kind in the other. And one does not really know which belief needs to be believed. Science with its rules and laws and logic and equations challenges abstract belief. The edifices of religion have evolved through great perseverance and majesty. The edifices of science build structures every day. If it took billions of years for matter to take shape and bring us into the existence that we are privileged to be in today, then surely it cannot be overcome or explained or removed through a hundred years of human endeavor. There is no end to human endeavor and perhaps in a million years we too shall be able to have respectable answers to the many uncertainties of life. But till that happens we need to respect and honor and be astonished by those that had the foresight to realize its importance and potential. Each initiator of a particular religion, was God incarnate. Because for someone to have such deep knowledge and reckoning and understanding, so many many centuries ago, must surely be equated with the Almighty, or some unknown force that surpassed the beliefs of all.
Human beings needed answers. What was happening around him or her was beyond explanation. And that gave rise to the concept of religion and the unknown. Religion is a success story and one that shall never face failure. The day it does humans would be a different species. Faith and belief would be non existant terms, not just in prayer, but in other more metaphorical exigencies.
Ever imagined a world without religion, faith and belief ?? A tough call ! Though many atheists would have several potent answers to the question !!
I need to answer some questions that are more inviting at the moment - namely a short walk to my pillow !
May you all rest well and dream pleasant dreams … their fulfillment is the challenge for tomorrow !
My love in abundance ~
PS There was another award ceremony last night ! Big Fm the radio station and Star combined to honor awardees with their decade old contributions to cinema. Yours truly got the actor of the decade, Aishwarya the actress .. many other fraternity present and partook in song and dance and camaraderie .. a happy feel !
with Veeru Dharam ji … always a joy to catch up with him ..
Anushka and Ranvir from their latest succes Band Baja Baraat .. my best to them
getting the award from Mrs Tina Ambani and Javed Saheb
old friend Jeetendra ..
the incessant media … love the looks of the two ladies in the centre … adorable
Chintu … buddy from so many films together, now in my relation through Shweta, she being married to his sisters son ..
Vidhu Vinod Chopra and discussions of another poetry recitation of my Fathers …
In the audience .. javed Saheb at his witty best …kept us in splits with his remarks on the proceedings .. at the far end and a bit out of focus the lovely Vidya Balan
Aishwarya with her decade award ..