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National Centre of Performing Arts in Mumbai Marking Half a Century of Celebrating Art

The 50th year milestone will serve as a direction for us to grow and be an integral part of the cultural life of not just Mumbai, but the whole nation

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National, Performing Arts, Mumbai
Khushroo N. Suntook, Chairman, NCPA said, It has been a long and exciting journey for everyone who has been associated with NCPA. Pixabay

The National Centre of Performing Arts (NCPA) in Mumbai will celebrate its 50th year with a three-day multi genre extravaganza ‘NCPA Add Art Festival’ to be held from November 29 to December 1 in Mumbai.

The festival will showcase performances across theatre, dance, Indian and western classical music, stand-up acts, screenings, puppetry and workshops.

Khushroo N. Suntook, Chairman, NCPA said, “It has been a long and exciting journey for everyone who has been associated with NCPA. The 50th year milestone will serve as a direction for us to grow and be an integral part of the cultural life of not just Mumbai, but the whole nation. With our constant endeavour to project only the best performances across the country and internationally, NCPA is truly becoming a beacon of culture.”

Artists including Rashid Khan, Zakir Hussain, Aditi Mangaldas, Malavika Sarukkai, Shiv Kumar Sharma, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Birju Maharaj, Ajoy Chakrabarty, Mallika Sarabhai, Astad Deboo, Zakir Khan, Amit Tondon, Jim Sarb, Igudesman and several more would be performing at the festival.

National, Performing Arts, Mumbai
The festival will showcase performances across theatre, dance, Indian and western classical music, stand-up acts, screenings, puppetry and workshops. Pixabay

The festival will commence with Symphony Orchestra of India. Led by music director Marat Bisengaliev and associate music director Zane Dalal, the concert will also feature joint choirs from around India.

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The highlight of this festival will be the India premiere of the 10-time Grammy award winner and six-time Billboard Award Winner Arturo Sandoval. It will also present a special performance featuring the Students of the NCPA – SOI Music Academy & Indian Music. (IANS)

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India Extends Lockdown Till May End

Lockdown in India Extends for 2 More Weeks

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A Kashmiri man tries on a pair of shoes outside a shop in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, May 16, 2020. VOA

India on Sunday extended its nearly 2-month-old lockdown by two weeks after reporting nearly 5,000 new coronavirus cases, but said restrictions could be eased in low-risk areas to boost economic activity.

After surpassing China on Saturday, India now has the most confirmed virus cases in Asia, with nearly 91,000.

New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and some other key regions are still battling to control the rising curve of coronavirus infections. But the Home Ministry said low-risk areas will be allowed to restore economic activity.

All domestic and international passenger flights will remain prohibited. Metro services, schools, colleges, hotels and restaurants will also remain shuttered nationwide, the Home Ministry said.

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All domestic and international passenger flights will remain prohibited. Pixabay

The Health Ministry on Sunday reported a record jump of nearly 5,000 cases in the past 24 hours, raising the number of confirmed cases in India to 90,927, including 2,872 deaths.

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India had fewer than 500 confirmed cases and nine deaths when the lockdown was first imposed on March 25.

On May 4, the government announced an easing of restrictions, allowing the reopening of neighborhood shops nationwide, and the resumption of manufacturing and farming in rural areas. It also resumed running a limited number of trains, mainly to carry stranded migrant workers. (VOA)

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“Where is The National Exit Plan?”, Congress Questions Government Over Lockdown

What is the 'national exit plan' from lockdown asks Congress

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Manish Tewari, Congress spokesperson asked "Where is the national exit plan,". WIkimedia Commons

The Congress has asked the government to spell out a roadmap for exiting the lockdown two days ahead of the expiry of lockdown-3 and following Prime Minister Modi seeking the states’ suggestions for lifting the restrictions.

“Where is the national exit plan,” asked Manish Tewari, Congress spokesperson on Friday.

“India announced a lockdown when the case count was 181 and now when you are lifting the lockdown, the number of cases has crossed 80,000. India is the first country apart from the US to be doing so,” said Tewari.

He said when the government can announce putting into effect the miscellaneous clause in the Disaster Management Act, then it can also come out with the exit plan.

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“The Prime Minister is playing a unique game as he announced lockdown; and now when things are out of hands, then the onus is put on the states to suffer the wrath of people.”, The Congress spokesperson said. Wikimedia Commons

“The Prime Minister is playing a unique game as he announced lockdown; and now when things are out of hands, then the onus is put on the states to suffer the wrath of people. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman too has put the onus of migrants on the states,” said Tewari.

The Congress said since states have to face people, no government can allow anarchy. “Therefore, states should be given more flexibility.”

The party has been questioning the exit strategy and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had asked the party chief ministers to press the Centre for a roadmap.

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The former Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh had asked the party chief ministers to press the Centre for a roadmap. Wikimedia Commons

Former party president Rahul Gandhi has emphasized that states should be consulted on zone categorization. He has asserted that the opening of the economy should be left to the states as they know better about the supply chain.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address on Tuesday said that coronavirus is a reality. He hinted that lockdown 4.0 would be “totally different.”

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The PM has also said in a video conference with Chief Ministers that as the country moves ahead, the economic activities that have been restarted would gain steam. He also asked state governments to ensure that rural India remains free from the Covid-19 crisis.

The Chief Ministers who couldn’t make themselves heard during the video conference on Monday were told to send their suggestions by May 15.

Though Maharashtra, Punjab, West Bengal and Telangana insisted on extending the current lockdown, some other states such as Delhi wanted greater freedom to open the economy, except in the containment zones. (IANS)

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Dharavi Musicians Create Rap Anthem, Urge People to Wear Masks

Music from the lanes of Dharavi

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A rap anthem was created urging people to wear masks. Pixabay

By Puja Gupta

Young rap musicians from Dharavi, Mumbai have created a unique trilingual rap anthem to urge people to wear masks, get timely tests and stay home to curb community spread of coronavirus in densely populated spaces.

The song “Stay Home Stay Safe” in Hindi, Marathi and Tamil is produced by Gully Gang Entertainment, directed by Joel D’Souza and written, composed and performed by Mc Altaf, Tony Psyko (Dopeadelicz) and Bonz N Ribz (7 Bantaiz).

It also features popular rapper Divine along with popular Bollywood, Tollywood and Marathi cinema stars such as Ajay Devgn, Akshay Kumar, Atul Kulkarni, Dia Mirza, Rana Daggubati and Suniel Shetty who have lent their voice to the cause.

Created out of their own experience of living in close quarter in Dharavi which is considered as Asia’s largest slum, the musicians try to reinforce that it is essential to aid the efforts of police and the doctors who are working tirelessly to save people and educate people in densely populated places to adopt safe and healthy habits despite the cramped quarters in which they live.

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The anthem was created by Rap musicians from Dharavi, Mumbai. Wikimedia Commons

Mc Altaf Shaikh of Gully Gang states: “Stay Home, Stay Safe aspires to drive home the message of how safety should be of highest importance to each and every one and we should strictly follow preventive measures as prescribed by the authorities..Right now if you are alive, consider it a blessing and stop complaining. Assist the COVID warriors in carrying out their duties diligently.”

Tony Sebastian of Dopeadelicz states, “Stay Home, Stay Safe is a multi- lingual track about the unprecedented global pandemic and we are creating awareness around the need to follow protocols and guidelines, keeping your surroundings clean, co-operating with the government and supporting the frontline workers. With unity and cooperation, we can maintain social distancing and eradicate this virus by staying home and staying safe. Jai Hind.”

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Lending his support to the initiative, actor Suniel Shetty said: “It’s an absolute honour and pleasure to be a part of this beautiful initiative. These are trying times and it is so humbling to see so many people come together to spread a message, that too, so powerfully. This song truly touched my heart, and I know the emotion will speak to many. Thank you for making me a small part of it.”

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“It’s an absolute honour and pleasure to be a part of this beautiful initiative. These are trying times and it is so humbling to see so many people come together to spread a message, that too, so powerfully.”, actor Suniel Shetty said. Wikimedia Commons

Echoing his words, actor Dia Mirza said:

“This effort is a onderful example of encouraging behavioural change and spreading awareness that has been made possible with these amazing artists! I feel grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this effort and truly wish it encourages more people to understand the importance and need to stay home and stay safe.”

The anthem and music video are a part of a larger #StayHomeStaySafe campaign supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the ATE Chandra Foundation that seeks to unite communities in densely populated areas in the fight against coronavirus. (IANS)