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By NewsGram Desk
Islamism was very subtly promoted by Salim-Javed in mainstream cinema back in the old bollywood days. And the movie Deewaar was their high point. It was Cultural imperialism in the name of “Hindu-Muslim Bhai bhai” and Secularism. Cultural imperialism happens to be the practice of promoting and imposing a culture over a less powerful society.
This record is completely based on a badge or Billa. Yes, the badge or Billa No. 786 which was shown in Deewaar. After this film, the presence of this badge was witnessed not only in Hindi cinema but also in Telugu movies like Khaidi No. 786. Not to forget, there also exists the epic movie of Mithun Chakraborthy with the title Billa No. 786.
In the movie Deewaar, Amitabh Bachchan keeps the Billa No.786 in his chest pocket, which saves him from the bullet on two different occasions.
It might sound very absurd and comical today, but during those times these scenes were the most astonishing highlights of the movie and were a big reason behind the success of the movie. Such scenes were emotionally compelling to the audience.
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The times have changed though.
In the movie Deewaar, Islam was depicted as a peaceful and kind-hearted religion and its fellow members were shown as hardworking victims of poverty, filled with honesty and religion. The movie tried to balance this out with some positive stuff about Hinduism. Back in those days, it was not easy to bash Hinduism through movies unlike these days when movies like Haider, Raman Raghav, PK, Leila, etc are made.
Do you remember the scene from the movie Deewaar that first shows Amitabh Bachchan wearing his coolie badge of 786 and the camera remains focused on Billa No. 786 in front of the Shiva Temple where his mother, Nirupa Roy goes every day? In the next scene, the significance of the badge is told to us by the old Rahim Chacha.
The dialogue explaining the munificence and protection afforded by the number 786 is straight out of some sermon delivered by a kind Maulvi in a mosque, complete with Billa No.786 shining resplendently in the morning sun says Sandeep Balakrishna in his article for The Dharma Dispatch.
The dialouge goes like-“786…hum logon mein is se bohot mubarak samajhte hai. Jaise hota hai na woh OM? Waise yeh 786…786 ka matlab hota hai beta, Bismillah. Shuru karta hoon Allah ke naam se. bohot Mubarak cheez hai beta. Badi barkat hai is mein. Is Bille ko hamesha apne paas rakhna. ”
Sandeep Balakrishna provides a rough translation of the dialougue in his article for The Dharma Dispatch: In our community, 786 is considered to be very auspicious. 786 is similar to OM. My son, the meaning of 786 is Bismillah. It’s like saying, “I shall start by invoking the name of Allah.” It’s a very auspicious thing, my son. It is endowed with a lot of prosperity. Keep this badge with you always.
With this perfect script writing, Salim-Javed managed to pull off an amazing trickery on Hindus. Sandeep Balakrishna calls it “Halal-ing the Hindus via cinema” in his article for The Dharma Dispatch and continues by saying that the subterfuge specifically is equating Bismillah with Om. It’s beyond the scope of this essay to elaborate on this point.
The cunning side of the movie Deewaar cannot be understood without drawing a comparison.
Taking the case Nirupa Roy, who played the role of suffering but loving and caring mother in the film. A Hindu mother who never fails to visit the Shiva Temple and her devotion towards him is unshakable. But what did she get in the end after all the devotion? A criminal son and a police officer son at war with each other leading to death of the former.
Shashi Kapoor, the cop brother had mixed emotions and faith towards Shiva, his mother’s favourite Deity. Whereas, Amitabh Bachchan is constantly angry with Shiva because he believes that he has done injustice to the kind-hearted woman. In an early scene in the movie, the temple Pujari tells Nirupa Roy that Amitabh Bachchan will come to the temple the day he develops Shraddha (faith or conviction) within himself. But Amitabh Bachchan instantly develops Shraddha towards 786 after Rahim Chacha explains its divine powers.
Indeed, Amitabh Bachchan’s extended conversation with Shiva in the same temple towards the end is both a brilliant piece of dialogue and scene execution writes Sandeep Balakrishna in his article for The Dharma Dispatch.
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So the question that arises is that does Amitabh Bachchan visit the Shiva Temple because Shradda had finally developed within him? Aswering the same Sandeep Balakrishna in his article for The Dharma Dispatch writes- It’s clear that that isn’t the case. He goes there because it’s his desperate attempt and prayer to save his ailing mother from dying. So when Amitabh Bachchan’s character pleads with Shiva, “don’t punish my mother for my sins,” and we place the whole thing in the context of the entire film, the impact is like an ideological sledgehammer. Shiva is a punishing God who never heeds Nirupa Roy’s lifelong prayers while 786/Allah is a protecting God. As we’ve seen earlier, it is only Billa No.786 that repeatedly saves Amitabh Bachchan from certain death. It is only when he loses Billa No.786 that he is fatally shot and eventually dies. In other words, he loses Allah’s protection. And where does he die? Precisely in the selfsame Shiva Temple.
Sandeep Balakrishna in his article for The Dharma Dispatch continues to explain that the downfall of Hindi cinema began the day it transmogrified into Bollywood. There was a lull after the end of the Salim-Javed and Angry Young Man and anti-establishment movie era. That lull was filled by the rich and entitled dynasts in Hindi cinema who transformed it into Bollywood. Today, Bollywood has no connection with either India or with reality itself. Consequently, over the last decade or so, it has become artistically barren and increasingly relies on perversion to hawk its wares. It remains to be seen who can fill the vacuum. Scoring ideological points via cinema has brought Hindi cinema to this abyss. Relying on the finest traditions of Indian and classical aesthetics might help.
India is known for its pickles, popularly called 'Achaar', even across the world. But who thought about the idea of pickles in the first place? Apparently, the idea of making pickles first came from the ancient civilisation of Mesopotamia, where archaeologists have found evidence of cucumbers being soaked in vinegar. This was done to preserve it, but the practice has spread all over the world today, that pickles mean so much more than just preserved vegetables.
In India, the idea of pickle has nothing to do with preservation, rather pickle is a side dish that adds flavour and taste to almost anything. In Punjab, parathas are served with pickle; in the south, pickle and curd rice is a household favourite, and in Andhra, it is a staple, eaten with everything. The flavour profile of pickles in each state is naturally different, suited to each cuisine's taste. Pickles are soaked in oil and salt for at least a month, mixed with spices and stored all year round. Mango season is often synonymous with pickle season as a majority of Indians love mango pickle. In the coastal cities, pickles are even made out of fish and prawns.
The Indian Achaar Image credit: Photo by Rahat Hossen on Unsplash
In other cultures, the pickling process has more to do with preservation. Cold countries, where temperatures drop to very low levels, pickle their vegetables in brine, vinegar, or salt. Sweden is famous for pickled herring, because fishing all year round is hard with all the snow and ice. The German Sauerkraut, originally composed of rice, cabbage, and wine, is now made using salt instead of wine. This gives it a sour flavour that is characteristic of the beloved German delicacy.
In Korea, kimchi is the national delicacy. It is a pickle that is made from pickled cabbages with a distinct mix of spices. Kimchi is made with various core ingredients, and is gaining popularity these days with the Korean Wave hitting the globe. It is a practice that represents the Korean winters, which are too harsh to grow anything. The Kimchi business is one of the largest in Korea, while the individual family recipes are also well-preserved as it is believed that each is unique in its own way.
The pickles made from dill and vinegar are most famous in America. It was introduced to the Americans by the Jewish immigrants. Dill pickles are best paired with sandwiches.
Keywords: Pickles, Culture, Brine, Vinegar, Preserves
It is impossible to detail the history of bookbinding without understanding the need for it. A very useful, and yet simple invention, spiral coils that hold books together and allow mobile access to the user came about just before WWII, but much before that, paper underwent a massive change in production technique.
Beginning in China, paper was made of bamboo sticks slit open and flattened. In Egypt, papyrus was made from the reeds that grew in the Nile. In India, long, rectangular strips of palm leaves were stitched together to form legible documents. When monasteries were established, scrolls came into being. Parchment paper, or animal hide, also known as vellum, were used to copy out texts periodically to preserve them. Prior to all this, clay tablets were used to record important events, and in some cases, rock edicts were made.
But all this changed with the invention of the printing press by Gutenberg. Paper became the medium by which inscriptions, announcements, and almost everything was made. Once paper became so accessible, printing began in full scale. Newspapers and the Bible were printed every day.
Metal coils were used before the world war Image credit: Photo by Dan Bucko on Unsplash
With wads of paper, something had to be done about keeping them together. Bookbinding began as a booming business. First, the pages were just sewn together. A special sewing machine was invented just for books. When this did not suit all book types, the process of punching and binding began. Holes were punched in books, and they were tied together.
Much later, an adhesive thermoplastic strip became available by which book pages were stuck together. They sold in this format for a long time. Ideas began to flow in for notebooks when people discovered that they could attach pieces of paper together. A machine was invented that drew lines. This made it easier for people who wrote a lot.
After a while, when people got used to having their books a certain way, The Spiral Binding Company opened in 1932, which changed the way bookbinding was done. Books could now be bound by coil and this was not only economical, but also convenient, because pages could easily be turned without breaking the bind. The original spiral bind coil was made of metal, but when supplies were rationed during WWII, they were made from plastic. This trend has remained to the present day, where spiral bound books are preferred to the other kinds of binding except in cases of publishing and official documentation.
Keywords: Spiral Binding, WWII, Paper, Books, Printing
By N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe
To keep the value and quality of what you offer, whether it's a romantic breakfast in bed or a royal wedding gift that will be remembered for years. The concept of gift-giving has taken on a number of shapes in today's society. Devina Singhania, the Founder of 'LE JAHAAN', a local home and decor accessories company, explains how the gifting paradigm has shifted.
Q: What do consumers expect from the gifting business and packaging designers these days?
A: Today's consumers are expecting more minimal sustainable products, designs and mediums. They are now more conscious about how their purchase affects the environment. Considering this shift in consumer buying, it's extremely important for companies to increase their commitments to responsible business practices and design products that are meant to be reused or recycled.
Today's consumers are expecting more minimal sustainable products, designs and mediums. | Photo by Superkitina on Unsplash
Q: The practice of self-gifting is being driven by millennials. What are your thoughts on the subject?
A: I absolutely agree with this. Millennials are so creative and expressive. They are more into personalized products with which they can tell the world something about themselves. We are often hired by millennials to monogram and personalize products for them. They truly believe it's the best way to stand out from the crowd and establish a signature style and we couldn't agree more.
We are often hired by millennials to monogram and personalize products for them. | Photo by freestocks on Unsplash
Q: What impact do colour trends have on gift designs and packaging?
A: 'Le Jahaan' has always been very influenced by colour and trends and we hope to continue this association with colour even while we break through to more sustainable products and collections.
'Le Jahaan' has always been very influenced by colour and trends | Photo by freestocks on Unsplash
Q: What has changed as a result of the pandemic in terms of how we commemorate special occasions and the gift-giving tradition?
A: It's smaller in quantity but more luxurious and thought through.
Q: What giving trends should one keep an eye on in 2022?
A: Consumers, including millennials and members of Generation Z, are especially concerned with sustainability. So, the trend is definitely to go green with eco-friendly.
Q: How does Le Jahaan keep its clients coming back?
A: Our products speak for themselves. We make small batches with exceptional quality with a personal touch.
(Article originally published on IANSlife) (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: gifts, le jahaan, festive, millennials, sustainable, gen z, paradigm, gifting