Monday, April 09, 2007
vini,vidi,vici(i came,i saw,i conquered)
that is what shilpa shetty would have probably said when she was declared winner of the "celebrity big brother" bbc live show. when she was seen initially in this programme, she was considered a write-off and the odds were heavily stacked against her winning the show. as her good luck(looks?) would have it , jane goody(good for nothing) helped her to become a winner. with those racist remarks. shilpa became overnight the underdog. and in one brilliant sweep she got the indians,paks and bangladeshis supporting her. her tears melted their hearts. while some sceptics said how can she now cry when she knew what she was in for when she agreed to participate in the show in the first place. 'volenti non fit injuria'. when you knew the risks you cannot claim injury,they said.many others rallied behind her. "didn't we tell you that she is a good actress?". well-known feminist germaine greer who was in india recently paid her a left-handed compliment by saying that she is manipulative and a very good actress.
there was lot of debate on the racial overtones and britain itself came under attack for being racist. their leaders had to run for cover and do some major damage limitation exercises. tony blair wanted to meet her and the queen extended an invitation for high tea which shilpa graciously accepted. keith vaz,a labour mp took up cudgels on her behalf and it looked as if there was a groundswell of sympathy. shilpa magnanimously said that she did not think jane goody was a racist and it was only an off the cuff remark. goi gave the no-gooder jane a visa to visit india and see the truth for herself. jane goody apologised and made up.shilpa emerged the winner.and with it came a lot of money and goodies.
her friendly rapport with jermaine jackson earned her a special viewer.michael jackson.he saw her and called her to congratulate her.she literally swooned when she heard michael jackson's voice.that is one of her happiest memories in an otherwise bitter slugfest.
winning the 'celebrity big brother' was not just a coup for statuesque shilpa and her mom. she has come a long way from a young limca model at age 16. she has endorsement deals from scents to jewellery,a tv documentary,host show offers,a role in a tv series,a part in andrew lloyd webber's 'bombay dreams' and so on and so forth all neatly tucked under her beautiful arms. but then, success can be punishing too.while some love you for your achievements there are many more who hate you for your success.they dig into the past and pull the skeletons out of the cupboards.shilpa had to face that ignominy.screaming headlines in newspapaers said that akshay kumar with whom she had had a six-year romance had claimed in an interview that he had bedded her. she responded that akshay would never say a thing like that. and he too said the same thing.
like superstars of the silver screen,she has been visiting temples of late. after siddhivinayak came tirupathi to thank balaji for having showered so much fortune on her.she has now a battery of professionals helping her to deal with her new found stature.her london apartment in the trendy hoxton area of north london bought for about 1.5 million pounds, is abuzz with activity round the clock. her uk publicist,max clifford,predicts that shilpa will earn a million pounds this year and "the sky is the limit after that". he said that shilpa is considering a career in theatre. and don't good fortune and social work go hand in hand? a shilpa shetty foundation has beeen established with a corpus of 500,000 pounds sterling,towards the aids campaign in india. and she has her pet 'peta' project too to be funded. yes,the lanky lass has a big heart!
we have to accept certain things. like growing old.it is inevitable.the rich and the poor.the haves and havenots.racism is one such thing.it is a part of every day reality, whether we like it or not. and it is not restricted to uk. it is there all over the world. in different forms. another way of discrimination.
all is well that ends well.shilpa is in and jade is out.jade's career has taken a plunge inspite of her public relations efforts on her india tour. she was hounded out by the media. she is not getting any tv offers. atleast till all this noise dies down. shilpa's comatose career is back on track. she need not worry about success in bollywood(she has clocked 45 turns on the marquee!) anymore. hollywood is beckoning her. and an unknown man too.after all amma knows best.she wants her favourite "mulgi"' to settle down.