Leo Coffee TV Advertisement : Then and Now

2 versions of Leo Coffee’s TV Spot, one from early 90’s and the other one from 2006. Why I am blogging this? There are multiple reasons.

First, this is one of the jingle composed by Legendary A.R. Rahman.

Second, Arvind Swamy is one of the cast in the ’90s version, with a thin and geek look.

Third… oh well, why don’t you watch both first.

’90’s Version

2006 Version

I liked the fact the commercial kept the original music score and starting point. But it ends with a twist. Husband brings coffee for the culturally ‘Indian’ but with a ‘modern’ outlook (can use laptop!) wife. Cool!

Do you think the situation really changed from ’90’s?


Manish Pitambare and Sanjay Dutt

I received this as a chain mail, normally I delete those kind of stuff, sometimes even without reading it – but this one is different…………..

By the time you read this news, the body of Major Manish Pitambare, who was shot dead at Anantnag, would have been cremated with full military honors.

On Tuesday, this news swept across all the news channels ’Sanjay Dutt relieved by court’. ’Sirf Munna not a bhai’ ’13 saal ka vanvaas khatam’ ’although found guilty for possession of armory, Sanjay can breath sigh of relief as all the TADA charges against him are withdrawn’ Then many personalities like Salman Khan said ’He is a good person. We knew he will come out clean’. Mr Big B said “Dutt’s family and our family have relations for years he’s a good kid. He is like elder brother to Abhishek”. His sister Priya Dutt said “We can sleep well tonight. It’s a great relief”

In other news, Parliament was mad at Indian team for performing bad; Greg Chappell said something; Shah Rukh Khan replaces Amitabh in KBC and other such stuff. But most of the emphasis was given on Sanjay Dutt’s “phoenix like” comeback from the ashes of terrorist charges. Surfing through the channels, one news on BBC startled me. It read “Hisbul Mujahidin’s most wanted terrorist ’Sohel Faisal’ killed in Anantnag , India . Indian Major leading the operation lost his life in the process. Four others are injured”.

It was past midnight, I started visiting the stupid Indian channels, but Sanjay Dutt was still ruling. They were telling how Sanjay pleaded to the court saying ’I’m the sole bread earner for my family’, ’I have a daughter who is studying in US’ and so on. Then they showed how Sanjay was not wearing his lucky blue shirt while he was hearing the verdict and also how he went to every temple and prayed for the last few months. A suspect in Mumbai bomb blasts, convicted under armory act…was being transformed into a hero.

Sure Sanjay Dutt has a daughter; Sure he did not do any terrorist activity. Possessing an AK47 is considered too elementary in terrorist community and also one who possesses an AK47 has a right to possess a pistol so that again is not such a big crime; Sure Sanjay Dutt went to all the temples; Sure he did a lot of Gandhigiri but then………..

Major Manish H Pitambare got the information from his sources about the terrorists’ whereabouts. Wasting no time he attacked the camp, killed Hisbul Mujahidin’s supremo and in the process lost his life to the bullets fired from an AK47. He is survived by a wife and daughter (just like Sanjay Dutt) who’s only 18 months old.

Major Manish never said ’I have a daughter’ before he took the decision to attack the terrorists in the darkest of nights. He never thought about having a family and he being the bread earner. No news channel covered this since they were too busy hyping a former drug addict, a suspect who’s linked to bomb blasts which killed hundreds. Their aim was to show how he defied the TADA charges and they were so successful that his conviction in possession of armory had no meaning. They also concluded that his parents in heaven must be happy and proud of him.

Parents of Major Manish are still living and they have to live rest of their lives without their beloved son. His daughter won’t ever see her daddy again. Finally Major Manish, to my generation is a greater hero, someone who laid his life in the name of this great nation.

So guys, please forward this message around so that the media knows which news to give importance, as it is a shame for us since this Army Major’s death news was given by a foreign TV channel!!!

Dates with Diva



It seems both ironic and incongruous that my relationship with the leading lady of Indian cinema in the late 1940s and early 1950s – a relationship that was among the most meaningful in my life, and not only as a film journalist – should have begun on an inauspicious note. For a scene to be shot at China Creek for a Hindi film whose title I cannot now recall, a ban was imposed by Madhubala, or, more correctly, by her formidable father, Khan Ataullah Khan, on film journalists and photographers from visiting that particular set. Hastily, and rather thoughtlessly, the film press responded by imposing a total blackout of Madhubala in the film press. I was appointed, without being consulted, chairman of the blackout committee.

In my considered opinion, then as now, both the ban and the response to it were uncalled for and, worse, ineffective. I told the journalists that the press needed Madhubala as much as Madhubala needed the press. In the dispute, the reaction of her many, many fans was not taken into account. The matter dragged on purposelessly for a couple of months till, one fine morning, Khan Saheb summoned the photographer Ram Aurangbadkar, my right-hand man in Movie Times which I then edited, and told him that the dispute was pointless and, as a gesture of goodwill, invited the film press to a tea party at Madhubala’s residence Arabian Villa in Bandra.

Arabian Villa, a picturesque little cottage in a Bandra side-lane, was one of many such cottages that sprawled all over the suburb in those days. At the villa’s gate, along with the security guards, stood Khan Saheb with a genial smile welcoming us journalists, eight or nine of us. We were taken to a small but elegantly decorated, richly-carpeted, drawing room. Unlike the other filmstar homes I’d visited, not a single portrait of Madhubala adorned the walls.

I hadn’t met Madhubala (her real name was Mumtaz Begum) earlier, but I had seen several of her films and had been impressed by her attractive personality and her obvious budding talent. I wasn’t prepared for the woman I saw slowly descending a curved staircase from the upper floor. It was as if a vision of beauty had achieved form and presence, in a simple white sari and matching sandals, right in front of my eyes, without a touch of make-up. I was so struck that I forgot my manners and didn’t stand up when, before greeting everyone else, she stood before me, her manicured hands together in a namaste.

Continue reading