Prayer that has become a panacea of all my problem

Sir, you know by now very well that I don’t lie. My wife Rehana is extremely religious, a couple of years back she jotted down a rather smallish prayer from the Holy Quran and requested me to learn it by heart. Me being me, I read it and somehow in the realms of time forgot to erm.. actually recite it until recently. It didn’t take long for me to realise that the cases of ordinary road rage had become quite frequent with me, simply due to my careless and fearless driving (yes I put my hands up!). I found myself in hot water about nothing and everything almost every week. The petty incidents were happening rather constantly at regular intervals and my small car was no exclusion, it had to bear the brunt of my recklessness sometimes. Sir, I can confidently say that my pocket-sized car has taken a few different avatars, it took a new shape every time it bumped into a pillar or post. Innumerable dents made it unique, anyone could identify it from afar Sir. So, I started reciting the prayer not only while driving the car but while leaving the house as well to my office, or to the mall or the theatres etc. And, now even on my blunders of driving the car inappropriately or parking it at wrong place people (the sufferers) would never react angrily moreover they would try to help me out in getting off of these sticky situations. Sir, the wonderful short prayer helped me get through the interview for my reemployment in this cosy place at a stone’s throw from my house. Working here doesn’t feel like work at all, it literally feels like no work and yet a lot of honorarium, Alhamdulilah. My friends, I keep reciting this miraculous prayer from the moment I step out of the house until I’m back home safely. If you recite this prayer in good faith the negative and offensive parties of any kind and type will become totally harmless InShaAllah. The other day a new movie had released and I decided to take my family to watch it the very first day, we had no booking but went to the cinema and guess what Sir, all were taken in. I had to recite our favourite prayer only once. I lovingly snapped (yes, you can snap lovingly) at my lovely wife, “Baba why the hell you gave me this prayer so late? I would have had a more serene and hassle free life.” The moment I realised the importance and depth of this short and effective prayer, I passed it on to all my loving daughters and son in laws.

When one leaves the house, he should recite ‘Bismillahi tawakkaltu alallahi la hawla wala quwwata illa billah’

Translation: In the name of Allah, I place my trust on Allah, there is no power (to do good) and no might (to abstain from evil) except with the assistance of Allah.

Sayyiduna Anas ibn Malik (radiyallahu’anhu) reports that Rasulullah (sallallahu’alaihi wasallam) said, ‘Whoever recites this dua, it is proclaimed to him, ‘You have been guided, you have been sufficed (i.e. your needs have been taken care of), you have been protected’ and Shaytan leaves his path.’

However Sir, only dua will not help, always remember to be conscious of God, and try to be a good human being.

Mosque And Our Old Staff

When we built our house in Chandor, Goa. Very few Muslims lived over there. I vividly remember, my wife and I were taking a stroll down our driveway and found ourselves standing at the main gate when suddenly six to eight people arrived from the village. They were led by a then small-time carpenter and they asked me “Sahib why don’t you start a mosque in Chandor? On Fridays, we all have to go to Margao city for prayers.” I said, “But there are very few Muslims in Chandor.” However, I assured them that I would help them build a Mosque in the village one day. The villagers told me “Sir you have a small piece of land with hall type high ceiling shed, we can surely build our mosque over there.” My wife told me that if I was serious and sincere I should immediately give that place for the Mosque to be built. The place was only a furlong away from our bungalow. I contemplated just for a while and then immediately donated that land to the villagers for starting a Mosque. My late father advised me that “It is very good that you are going to have the mosque in Chandor but keep the management in your own hands, otherwise after some years they will all start fighting over small things.” Later on, I realised that my father’s advice was one hundred percent correct. For more than 15 years we ran the village mosque ourselves even from Hyderabad. Now MashaAllah, it has become a full-fledged mosque with a small academy and not only Jummah prayers are being held, even Eid ul Fitr and Eid ul Adha prayers are performed there, they also run a proper modern madrasa for the kids. Sir, it is strange but true, that only my Bungalow has vanished, however, hundreds of houses of Muslims, rich and poor are now all around that small mosque.

Our Old Staff

When our Bungalow in Chandor was under construction, the contractor got many labourers from Karnataka, the neighbouring state, as workers in Goa were not easily available. Once the house was completed, Basheer who was dark and Hefty stood with his wife Shaibi, a short and thin lady with their three kids, Budan, Raja and Razia who were shivering as they were a little or maybe a lot nervous as that was the final day of their job with us. “Sir should we go back to our home Karnataka?” he asked. I instantly said, “No don’t go, stay here and work for us in the kitchen and garden, all your kids would be sent to the nearby church school.” We never even discussed their salary etc, as by now they knew us well and had formed a good opinion about us. During more than a decade of services to us, they never gave any chance to reconsider, they never failed us. We also considered them as members of our family. When our bungalow was to be sold, we bought them a small plot nearby, in Chandor itself. Buddan, Raja, Razia are happily married and Sahibi has also earned a good name in the village as she loves to do a bit of social work here and there. Basheer died in a tragic train accident a long time back when the kids were still very young. I tried my best to save his life but in vain. We took him to Panaji’s main hospital, I gave my blood, but Basheer succumbed to his serious injuries. God Bless them All.

Europe

titlisMy very dear friend, Sardar Harmanjit Singh is well-known for his revolving restaurant, Parikrama (which is India’s highest and Delhi’s solitary revolving restaurant) as well as his honest hospitable nature. So, when he came to know that my wife and I were planning to make a trip to Europe he at once introduced me to his London-based nephew Bobby. Before we even knew, the young sardarji, a well placed and upcoming businessman, had already organised a nice Europe tour for us. We were supposed to see Belgium, Germany, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and France. In London, they had given us one cosy room in their lovely house,  so we could have a nice and memorable stay there. My wife and I were leisurely sitting down on the floor with cushions around, listening to soft music, I was reading a novel to her, a little loudly, we were totally engrossed in each other and were really not aware of our surroundings. After having lunch with our hosts, my wife and I went for a walk. Their bungalow was beautiful and their portico was full of Mercedes, jaguars and BMWs. Bobby was a newlywed, he asked me if he could barge in and we said, of course. He informed me that even his sister had recently got married but even they were fighting every now and then with each other. After a bit of hesitation, he asked, “How come you and your wife are so much in love and happy and content ?” When we told him that we had already completed our 10th anniversary, he was in shock and sat in contemplation and wanted us to brief him and his wife about leading a peaceful and romantic life. I told him, at the time of my marriage my mother gave me a mantra “Firstly try to avoid fighting and if at all you happen to have a tiff during the day never ever sleep without making up.” We have been following it religiously ever since.
We took a small spick and span ferry to Brussels, I along with my wife reached there in no time. After settling in the hotel room, I looked at her once again, she was all cuddled up in the large lavender duvet, sipping her decaf, ready to shut down. I knew there was no way on earth she would want to join in and watch the match with me and I did not want to watch it by myself with no volume. I went down to the hotel lobby looked around. I took my wallet, put all the money around 2000 pound and when I reached downstairs, there was no proper TV lounge so I went out, I must have walked quite a bit, then I noticed a little roadside bar, I went inside and took a stool near the counter. The bartender was a slightly elderly black woman, I asked her for some snacks and a drink, she obliged, once I finished my drink I asked her how much should I pay? The match hadn’t even started yet. She muttered something softly I couldn’t hear properly. I only had 50 pound notes with me, I took one out and gave it to her. She insisted on change and I said I had no change. She whispered in a very stern voice, “Go Away, go home, sir, please, you don’t see the lurking danger around you, you will be mugged on your way back if you don’t leave now, forget about the money consider it complementary, just leave the bar right Now” I realized the seriousness of the situation and literally ran from there, took a cab and reached the hotel safe and sound. I will always be thankful to her, of course not just for the complimentary drink but for watching my back. If somehow you come across this blog, let me say, “Thank You!”
In Germany we were made the guest of a local family they were very nice and hospitable, from Germany we drove down to Austria, Austria is a very beautiful country, the houses are immensely colourful and lots of flowers make them spectacular. In my wife’s words, it is one of the most beautiful countries. From Austria we went to Italy, we spent most of our time in and around Venice. The unforgettable gondola ride will keep alive in our memories. We went to Switzerland, to Mount Titlis, the air trolleys (cable cars) were no doubt very big and comfortable, but I thought, the restaurant was very ill-equipped for Indians, there was a Gujarati group of travelers who had brought their cook along with them and because of the high altitude and excessive snow, I assume it somehow made all of us hungry. My wife is very strict on halal food, I was about to break my record of not begging for food, the aroma and fragrance of puri bhaji was penetrating our nostrils and we were finding it really difficult not to ask them for food. Just as I was about to give in, my wife found mashed chickpeas salad (as far as a can recall, vegan) sandwiches and asparagus soup, which was sufficient for filling our appetite. She had a proud smile dawning her face, to her it felt like she had climbed the highest summit! And that’s how we bid adieu to Titlis.

Mathura

I was doing my BA honours in AMU. We had a vacation of around five days, my classmates and I decided to have some ‘real fun’. They were sitting on the small lawn of my University house, sipping tea and enjoying snacks which my mother would always prepare and sent for my friends. We hired six bicycles from a nearby hostel fellow. We had actually missed the movie of Dilip Kumar’s ‘Ganga Jamuna’ and came to know from the newspaper that the movie was now running in one of the cinema theatres in Mathura. The Town is about 80 km away from Aligarh, we were so excited that we totally forgot to discuss the money part, I took it for granted that as other than me they were all hostellers and they must be in the habit of keeping some money with them all the time. We left Aligarh at 11 am. I informed my mum that, that night I would stay with my friends in the hostel and would come home the next day.
First two hours of the Journey were quite nice and when I got thirsty on the way, we spotted a ‘panghat’ (well). We stopped and quenched our thirst with the clean well water, with help of quite a few attractive village belles. All of us cycled for two more hours and then noticed a huge sand dune close to the highway, I had brought my Russian camera with me and persuaded other friends to stop there and take some nice and lively photographs. The group stopped immediately, one boy was from Azamgarh he was tall and hefty, he put a scarf around his head and neck and rest of us surrounded him. We were carrying a small kitchen knife for cutting fruits on the way. In the excitement of almost reaching our destination, the skyline and our tall friend’s scarf antics, and off course my gleaming Russian camera, we found ourselves posing as if we wanted to kill him. Suddenly a bus arrived and screeched near us. Just as we were enacting with perfection the fake murder scene. A police inspector along with two-three bus occupants jumped down rushing towards us yelling “STOP, STOP YOU DIRTY FELLOWS, and WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU PEOPLE DOING”. We were also shocked and taken aback and we told him “Inspector Sahib we were just joking with each other and posing for pictures, here see the camera” the sub-inspector pushed the camera and directed us to sit in the bus as he wanted us to come to the police station with him. By that time some more passengers came on the bus and when we told them that we are students of AMU and were going to Mathura to see a movie, the public believed us and were soft on us. The police sub-inspector had in mind a double promotion which would be possible by arresting the hardcore murderers red-handed, that is why he wasn’t ready to listen to us at all, but because of the intervention of some of the generous passengers, he allowed us to leave.
A big tragedy was avoided that day Dear Sir. The inspector could’ve easily shot one of us. God saved us. Somehow we reached Mathura by 7 PM. The cinema was on the outskirts only so, we stopped at once the moment we saw the theatre with the huge placard ‘Showing…Ganga Jamuna’. We noticed a small thatched hut nearby. The husband and wife team were ready to serve hot meals in half an hour. They said you people don’t have to worry about the price of the food, you are one of our respected guests. After cycling 80 odd kilometres our hunger knew no bounds, six of us sat on the floor, and the lady was serving us hot chapattis and they were very tasty and white in colour. They were actually made of maize flour. We all ate like monsters. When we inquired about the food it was not even 100 rupees. The food included two vegetable dishes, toor dal (legume curry), three types of pickles and a piece of jaggery for dessert. All of us were really grateful to the couple and thanked them profusely for their hospitality. After the Shahi food, we walked to the theatre which was luckily adjacent. At the ticket counter, we bought six balcony tickets for around 200 rupees. we enjoyed Dilip sahibs movie for three hours and when the movie got over we were looking at each other’s faces expecting someone to speak about the fact that where the hell were we going to staying that night. We checked, and rechecked about ten times to ensure if we had sufficient money to stay at some hotel, any hotel, a dingy hotel and spend the October night, but believe my words, Sir. We had no money left. We requested the manager of the theatre to allow us to spend the night in the theatre. After much persuasion and haggling, he agreed and allowed us to sleep for the night. We slept like logs and when we got up in the morning we found that our legs were stiff like rocks and were painting. All of us were also going through severe stomach ache due to the Jowar flour Rotis that we had the night before. By then we knew, we couldn’t cycle back to Aligarh. So we persuaded a bus driver to keep our bicycles on the bus and take us to AMU, SS hall where that Azamgarh chap used to stay and paid the bus fellow for his services. Sir, it is for you to know what you learnt from this incident of mine other than a few cackles.
Aapka dost Gumnaam !

Goa to Hyderabad And How Hyderabad became Our Second Home

When I sold my Bungalow in Goa, to settle the huge expenses accrued on assembly elections in UP. Please believe my word, as you always do sir, I do not own a penny to anyone anywhere. I being a thin-skinned politician, my wife and children are paying the cost in the form of leading an ordinary life, whereas they were used to having a very comfortable and cosy lifestyle. To remain a Good Samaritan and an honest person they are paying a huge cost. I took away suddenly each and every luxury of life from them, but fellows and my wife never showed even a shred of regret, except for intermittent ‘aha-uhus’.goa house
goa house gardenhyd

So dear Sir, when I said goodbye to my friends Nelson and Neville in Goa, I had my childhood friend, Mr Jannat Hussain, who was the principal secretary to CM, in Andhra Pradesh. I brought a truckload of my things from Goa, which I parked outside his residence in Panja Gutta, Hyderabad. Poor Jannat Bhai immensely amazed but genuinely pleased to see us at his place. He organised a small house immediately for us and got my children admitted to a proper school. By next month, he organised a Job for me, where I am working as a consultant for the Government of Telangana until now. I spoke to one of the property dealers and he brought us to Red Hills, where we could rent a nice, comfortable flat. We have been staying here for almost a decade now in this building, there are six different families staying over here. By the grace of God, this place has proved almost Heaven like because all the residents are courteous, nice and helpful to each other. I have five grown up daughters, our next door neighbour Mr Manzoor has become one of our best family friends. He has three very nice, friendly, religious and intelligent daughters. They have become great friends of my daughters. The most unique and important thing of this house is the melodious sound of Azaan which comes from three sides to our place. Ten years have passed MashaAllah nicely and happily. We all pray every day mostly five times and God has showered upon so much peace and comfort, Alhamdulilah. Two of my daughters who are married to equally religious and sober boys, MashaAllah they are more like sons than In-laws, God bless them and their parents too who gave them such good upbringing. God has been extremely Benevolent on the general Public. All Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs. Jains, those who live in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are doing exceptionally well in their lives, land prices have gone up in such a proper manner, that literally all who had even a tiny piece of land or agriculture have now become rich and well to do.

PS: Listen to the beautiful Azaan, you will understand Sir, even if you close your eyes and just listen.:-

 

My Roots and More

Our Family

My mother Rachel Chatterjee studied at St. John’s College, Agra UP. My maternal grandmother was Jewish and her husband, my granddad was an extremely famous doctor practising in Damoh, a godforsaken, ok if not that then can I say a dreary town in MP. He was a very rich and powerful man, kind and large-hearted, a rare combination these days. You would easily stereotype my grandmother as a strict, rude and ambitious Jewish lady. My paternal Grandfather was orthodox but somehow preferred higher and better education for his sons. My father’s name is Mohd. Ikram Ullah Khan, his father was Saif Ullah Khan who was married to Husnajahan Beghum, she was a very elegant lady. She lived a long life of about a 100 years Alhamdulilah. My great-grandfather was Ahmed Ghouse Khan, and his father was Mansabdat Khan whose ancestors had come from Afghanistan probably a century back. My mother and father were classmates and had fallen in love, it was love at first sight. Rachel and Ikram (mum and dad) were very popular and were liked by all. Just like a dramatic movie parents of the girl and boy were against this marriage because of the difference in religion, (I know even my mum’s side, one would assume they should have approved, as they themselves had an inter-religion love marriage ?!) but both my mum and dad decided that they would rather die than not marry each other. Yes, both of them stopped having food at their respective houses. Before they would really starve to death, better sense prevailed at both the sides and they eventually got married and as it is said, Sir, ‘They lived happily ever after’. My mum was beautiful and charming, my dad was, well he wasn’t very tall or dark, he was in fact quite fair however he was very handsome, a striking young man and he used to write poetry for her. Late Majaz the all-time great Urdu poet wrote a poem for my mum, Majaz used to stay at my dad’s hostel room whenever he was in Agra.

My sister Dr Zubaida Baig is a straight forward and a simple lady, who has been living in Chicago for the last two decades. Her husband Mr Mirza Baig is a nice gentleman, he is a low profile person, very hard-working and religious. Three of my brothers live in India, they are all married and have grown up children. They apparently appear to be satisfied in their lives. My father in law is my good friend also, earlier also we used to play cards together and go for bird shooting, which was officially permissible. I have one brother-in-law who is very intelligent and professionally successful. He is leading a very happy family life with his lovely wife and two beautiful and intelligent daughters, MashaAllah. Three of my wife’s sisters have a safe and sound married life and all of them are doing pretty well in their lives, Alhamdulilah

Though I might have had a few girlfriends in my past, I had kept these magic words safe “I love you” for my wife in the unbreakable locker we call ‘heart’. My Wife is my best companion, friend and philosopher. All credit goes to her for the unequivocal and unconditional love she has showered upon me, time and again till this day, Alhamdulillah. She always becomes my greatest strength in good times and tough times alike. May God Bless her and Bless her always.

Braganza Mansion Chandor, South Goa

brag31The Menezes Braganza Pereira house is located at the Chandor village in Goa. It is known to be more than 350 years old and is situated near the church square in Chandor. This mansion is the most exquisite heritage house in the countryside, the biggest in Goa and also has a Portuguese-style facade. It is a museum of chandeliers, painting, porcelain, crystal, period furniture and other antique items. According to family history, in the 17th century, A.F.S. Braganza Pereira was representing Goa under the Portuguese government as a vice consul general in Spain. He was gifted the land by the king of Portugal, Don Luiz on which the mansion is now located. Later after a few generations, the house was divided into two equal halves as it was inherited by two sisters in the family. It was named after their husbands – Menezes Braganza (west wing) and Braganza Pereira (East wing) and is still inhabited by descendants of the two families.

Chandor happens to be the most Beautiful Village of Goa, the sleepy chandrapuri used to be a bustling Hindu kingdom. The moment we enter the narrow lanes of this village , the light green paddy fields, the emerald green coconut groves, moss and velvet green grass all over make it a heavenly place.

Braganza Mansion has not been given to any five star or seven-star hotel to run, though they continuously keep on persuading them to do so. At present Mr Derek and all their brothers and sisters are living there, these people are very hospitable and nice and are our family friends for decades. Mr Nelson Pereira Costa and his younger brother Dr Neville Pereira Costa, they are my best friends and the friendship is exemplary. We used to spend our entire time together in Goa, either in my bungalow or in their mansion. This 350-year-old mansion is visited by all the celebrities, politicians, etc and it has also become a regular spot for shooting of both Hollywood and Bollywood movies.

May God bless them all.

Car Accident, Canacona, South Goa.

At my house in Chandor, I had noticed that domestic help and workers are required for the kitchen as well as for the garden, so I went for the search. I took my Maruti 800 and I picked Rajan Bale with me for my company. Rajan is a good friend, he is a quite person and knows driving well. We chose a small car because the roads are very narrow in  Canacona. When we reached our destination we found two matured boys and one matured girl in their late twenties who were apparently perfect for the job. We gave our address of Chandor to their guardians and parents so that next day they could see our house and finalise about their salaries etc. On Our way back to Chandor I told Rajan, “let’s have food and beer”. Rajan insisted that I should stick to one beer but I took two large beers. Poor Rajan insisted that since he has not taken even one beer that I should allow him to drive. I said, “You are going to witness the best driving of your lifetime”, and laughed it out after that poor Rajan kept mum and sat next to me. We drove hardly fifty kilometres, on a notorious place for accidents emerged and emerged from behind a big car and behind that a huge truck. On one side of me was a dwarf rocky mountain and on the other side was a deep gorge. We had no option but to bang each other, naturally, the truck driver survived and we were finished. My tiny and thin car turned into a vegetable pulp. Rajan’s forehead was bleeding and my femur was broken into two pieces. The entire impact of the accident was shifted to that strong piece of bone and that’s why I am alive today. My spleen, kidneys, liver and heart all important organs were saved. Only a few of my ribs were broken and my head was bleeding profusely. All the three workers did not receive any bruise. Thank God. An angel like person who was luckily and incidentally driving his motorbike behind our car stopped and recognised me too. He somehow managed one small sand loader pickup and put us all on the same,took us to the nearby health centre. That angel also all the way went to Chandor about 100 km away from the health centre and informed my family about my serious accident. Dr Taneja a Govt Doctor and a very close friend of mine got me shifted to Margao Civil Hospital. By that time my friends in the services came to know about my accident. They all gathered in the famous orthopaedic centre. The well-known surgeon was our common friend who was to leave to the US to attend a conference, but instead he stayed back and operated on me. My friends, well wishers and family members saw the whole episode on the Screen. It was a 100% successful operation and Hence, MashaAllah no shortening of my leg, not even one centimetre. Believe my word Sir, Never mix drinking with driving only fools do that. I do not drink anymore, Sir.

Drinking, in any case, is bad and one humble request to you all, take life seriously.

canacona

Gambling!

August 5, 2016

My friends and I went to Nepal twice to gamble in the small casino of hotel Soaltee. I wasn’t  a big fan of Nepal otherwise, probably cause I had kept myself busy indoors rather than appreciate the beauty outside. This was a long time back, we wasted a lot of money over there in a couple of days. Once many of my friends and their wives were having a good time in a suite of a star hotel. Regular chit-chat and food and drinks were on. Suddenly one gentleman from Singapore started coaxing us to leave the ladies table and to come gamble with him. There were about five-six people. The cards were brought and we started playing flash. After the first deal, I won. They dealt again. I placed all the money on the table, all the friends shied away only the man from Singapore stayed back. I won again! By now, there must have been a few lakhs (few hundred thousand) lying on the table. The gentleman from Singapore inquired if I still wanted to play and I said yes and at the end, I won the entire pile of money lying on the table and the jeweller fellow got nervous and irritated but their group invited me to play with them in Singapore. I accepted their invitation.
We all know, how beautiful and clean Singapore is, so who would not like to take this opportunity and visit. The group who called us to Singapore avoided playing cards completely because they were thinking as if I was a big gambler. Sir, my wife and I laughed it out!
When we went to Bangkok we also went to Macau to gamble, at a huge floating wooden casino “Macau Palace”, we had a good time. We have also been to Donald trump’s Casino Taj which is a very poor copy of our Taj Mahal of Agra. I hate Donald trump.
I with my wife went to Las Vegas to gamble honestly and we played for two days in innumerable casinos. We stayed in the famous hotel and casino ‘Stardust’. It was one of the most memorable stays we had in the US. They had a Giant safe, huge beds, big sofas and massive, lavish washrooms. In spite of these amenities provided by the hotel only a fool would want to stay in their room, so long you have the last penny in your pocket. that’s what I thought then. Every five-star hotel has a casino now even in Goa. In Goa, most the casinos are in bad shape, even the floating ones. The moment I see a casino I wish to spend all my time in the casino. My favourite game is roulette. My favorite numbers in casino are 10, 29, 3, 5, 36, 2, 23, 26, 0 and 00. The golden rule in playing in a casino is play till you win and leave the casino at once. I had won a lot but lost much more. I would suggest my dear Sir, never even enter a Casino. A Casino is worse than a Bar and Gambling is worse than Drinking. Well, the real golden rule is, “Never Step into a Casino!” Sir, that is it, trust me you will be the winner!

Mumbai

Mr Mario Miranda and his wife Habiba were our good friends. We would meet occasionally but we were genuine and natural fans of each other. Mario is from Loutolim but most of his life he lived in Mumbai in a very simple but sea facing flat. His house in Loutolim, Goa was a huge and beautiful one. He died recently. One of his son, who is a celebrity gave me a rare haircut at his Mumbai flat, like father like son they had no air of being big or a celebrity. Mario as a cartoonist is a world-famous personality; he had that passion for his work not for money. He earned much less than what his stature was. I thought of starting a mineral water unit in Chandor, Goa with two of my local friends. I simply and very casually asked my dear friend Mario to make and paint a logo for my mineral water bottle “agua da fonte”. He had apologised a lot that he had never done such a thing. But I insisted and waited for six months when finally Mario Miranda gave the wonderful logo.

I met Mr Dilip Kumar three times, twice in Bombay and once in Lucknow. I spent quite a few hours at his pali hill Bungalow. Saira ji, his wife treated and tackled him amazingly. If Yusuf sahib is the best actor, Saira Bano ji happens to be the best wife I have come across until now. May God bless them both with more healthy and happy years ahead.

Late Mr Jammu Sughand was a clean financier of the Mumbai film industry. Suddenly his Hindi films started becoming hits after hits. He died early and became a bit controversial too at the end of his career. His sixth sense for smelling a hit or a flop film was so high that many film producers wanted their films released under his banner. One of my classmate Tanvir Ahmed, who made the film ‘chirutha’ in the Pune film institute, Pune. Later on , out of his entire saving and money from the financiers , he made one more film but the ruthless world of Mumbai never helped this upcoming and hapless chap. Once while I was in Bombay, Tanvir was aware that I know Jammu well so he organised a special screening of his movie and requested me to get Jammu along to see the movie. Jammu told him frankly that this film will not be sold and of course he was right. Poor fellow Tanvir was finished temporarily.