Thursday, October 12, 2006

10 foot Marijuana plants

http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/americas/10/12/canada.troops.marijuana.reut/index.html

Canadian are encountering forests of marijuana which the taliban are using for cover. They try to burn them away until they figure out that when the plants do burn, they are having ill-effects on the troops downwind :-)

I wonder what the Taliban in the marijuana forests thought about it...

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Bulla Ki Jaana

This is an awesome song by Rabbi Shergill.
Here's a link to the song and here are the lyrics

The song was written by Baba Bulle Shah, a sufi mystic. The times of Bulle Shah(1680-1750) were quite tumultous for Punjab and India being the years during and just after the rule of Aurangzeb (1658-1707). This period saw the overextending of the Mughal Empire and the extremist islamic rule under Aurangzeb, who was a hyper-traditional sunni muslim unlike Shah Jahan, Jehangir and Akbar who were much more tolerant.

Bulle Shah's poetry is very humanistic, in keeping with the Sufi traditions (in another poem, he says 'Destroy the temple and the mosque, but do not break a lovelorn heart, for God lives there'). He apparently disliked religious extremism and the undue authority wielded by the mullahs.

The rest of Rabbi's album is quite cool. Not run-of-the-mill desi-pop. Here's a rediff article on him.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Chandni Bar

This Madhur Bhandarkar movie is about the life of dancing girls at the beer bars in Bombay. The story follows the life of Mumtaz, a girl from UP(played by Tabu). Her parents get killed in a religious riot and comes to Bombay with her uncle to make a living. She is forced to start working as a dancing girl in a bar. The movie follows the ups and downs (mostly downs) of her life, her desperation to ensure that atleast her children avoid her fate and move up in life.

The story is told against the canvas of life in the bombay underworld. The corruption in the system is shown in a very matter-of-fact manner. It's depressing because you know it's real and a thousand similar stories are probably going on right now.

All the actors have played their parts very well. Tabu as Mumtaz and Atul Kulkarni as Potiya Sawant, a gangster stand out with their brilliant performances.

This is definitely not a feelgood movie, but certainly worth watching.