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Snapshots Frames 2001

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The vertically-challenged minister for I&B was given a special devise to stand tall on the dais as she spoke...a stool to help her gain a few extra inches.

In an otherwise well-organised event, there were frequent disruptions in sound, with the microphones swallowing most of what ministers Chhagan Bhujbal and Sushma Swaraj spoke. Said Swaraj to Bhujbal, The mikes went silent the moment you began to speak of your governments achievements. Now, when Im ready to talk about my ministry, its doing the same again.

Yash Chopra, in between addressing symposiums and supervising rehearsals for the evenings variety entertainment programmes, was seen munching popcorns with Sanjeev Kohli and the Metavision staff.

Dheeraj Kumar sat next to Shaktimaan Mukesh Khanna. While Khanna was heard occasionally shouting Well said, to the speakers, Kumar continued to chat non-stop into his mobile.

Shabana Azmi spent a quiet afternoon with Sushma Swaraj. Whats cooking between the thick pals? Well, neithers telling.

Feroze Khan was seen chatting up the Bachchan, with the FICCI files and portfolio stylishly tucked under his arm. Im in the mood for socialising, these days, he winked, before heading straight for the cocktails.

Amit Khanna, as usual, was a sought-after speaker at the FICCI event. Given his gift for speaking with rare erudition on a variety of topics, he was asked to stand in for several speakers who failed to turn up  from Mani Ratnam to Karan Johar.

Rajkumar Barjatya ambled up to speak with a large black bag. But as usual, he spoke so softly that few could hear him until they got closer to him.

Its a different Subhash Ghai we get to meet these days. In keeping with his newfound image of a businessman, perhaps, he rarely speaks unless spoken to, and then he does it in carefully-measured prose

MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY

MINISTER for I&B, SUSHMA SWARAJ was in her elements on the inaugural day of Frames 2001, FICCIs two-day conference on the entertainment industry. In fact, so was AMITABH BACHCHAN, who spoke with insight into what went wrong at AB Corp. He also outlined his plans to revive the company. At the end of it, there was stunned silence and then, a deafening round of applause. Obviously, the Bachchan and his ailing outfit have managed to win not just sympathy, but also support.

It was Swarajs turn to speak, next. That, of course, called for a drastic rearrangement of mikes, given the ministers stature, or the lack of it. See how the Big B harrasses short-statured women, she quipped, before launching into a critique of Bachchans speech.

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