Singer S P Balasubrahmanyam tests positive for COVID-19

Agencies
August 5, 2020

New Delhi, Aug 5: Playback singer S P Balasubrahmanyam on Wednesday confirmed testing positive for COVID-19 with 'mild' symptoms.

The 74-year-old musician shared the information through a video message posted on his official Facebook page.

In the video, the singer detailed about having a little "discomfort" for two days, stating he had chest congestion along with cold and on-off fever, which led him to get tested for the virus.

However, he also mentioned that he could have stayed at home in self-quarantine, as advised, but did not want to put his family in danger, and hence got admitted by his own choice, to recover quickly.

"I am in good hand, I am in good health. Nobody has to worry about this. The fever has subsided, and in two days I'll be discharged and I'll be home. Thanks for the concern," he said in the video message.

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News Network
September 25,2020

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New Delhi, Sept 25: Sid Mallya, son of fugitive business tycoon Vijay Mallya, will make his debut as an author with a book on mental health, announced publishing house Westland.

Tentatively titled conSIDer This, borrowed from his recent web series where Mallya talked about his own mental struggle and how he overcame it, the book is scheduled to be published in May 2021, they added.

The actor-producer, who has been part of films like Brahman Naman and Best Fake Friends, has garnered "over three million views" for the web series posted on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook.

"When I launched my 'conSIDer This' series earlier in the year, my aim was to just try and help as many people as I could by sharing my own experiences with mental health in an open and transparent manner.

"The amazing response that the series received inspired me to want to keep spreading awareness around mental health, and I'm happy to be able to continue my journey by partnering with Westland to turn 'conSIDer This' into a book," said the 33-year-old.

While in the web series Sid used examples from his journey and addressed a gamut of topics within the sphere of mental health, the book will delve into what tools he used to help him cope and more importantly find a way to highlight the importance of seeking professional help.

"We're delighted to be collaborating with Sid on a book based on his video series on mental health issues, which has resonated with millions of viewers. Mental health is a major concern worldwide and we hope that Sid’s book, in which he will open up about his own journey, will help create an awareness and sensitivity about the issue," said Deepthi Talwar, chief editor, Westland Publications.

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Agencies
September 18,2020

Mumbai, Sept 18: Back in the early 1970s, Marathi playwright Vijay Tendulkar's play 'Sakharam Binder' -- which features the character of a bookbinder who 'takes in' women abandoned or dejected by other men and uses them as domestic help and sexual partners -- struggled with the Stage Scrutiny Board (the censor board) and sections of society. In 2020, a play explores the idea of censorship in the arts through this story.

Titled 'Sex, Morality, and Censorship', the play is based on Vijay Tendulkar's theatre classic 'Sakharam Binder's struggle with censorship. Recapturing the essence of Maharashtra's folk arts 'Tamasha' and the spirit of the 1970s, the play offers a mix of theatre, live music, dance, and video. Play director Sunil Shanbag and co-writer Irawati Karnik this week hosted a guided viewing of the performance of the play recorded at the iconic Prithvi Theatre in Mumbai. The viewing took place on Paytm Insider's theatre initiative, Front & Centre in collaboration with Studio Tamaasha's monthly series - TheatreNama.

The play also looks at the parallel theme of the "sanitisation" the folk arts, namely Maharashtra's Tamasha tradition, by conservative sections of society, director Sunil Shanbag said.

Asked how censorship has impacted free expression of 'taboo' topics on stage, Shanbag shares: "Interestingly only two states in India still retain the equivalent of the outdated colonial law of 1876, the Dramatic Performances Act. These are Maharashtra and Gujarat. In Maharashtra there are several examples of both official censorship of theatre by the stage scrutiny board, and unofficial censorship by non-state players, and mobs. The latter, unofficial censorship, follows no rules or procedures, and is unpredictable, hence very dangerous to deal with. Of late we do worry that official censorship too seems inclined towards conservatism which can be quite oppressive for artists."

In the guided viewing, the makers took the audience on the journey of what began as an idea to do a play about censorship, slowly developed and evolved into a full-fledged theatre production. "This process took about a year of work, and involved many collaborators, which included the actors. We shared these rich experiences and memories with the audience and showed them extensive excerpts from a performance of the play to illustrate and illuminate what we were saying," shared Shanbag.

Varun Khare - Business Head, Live Entertainment (IPs & Partnerships) at Paytm Insider, said, "Censorship has long plagued the sharp-edged satire and other nuances that are characteristic of Tamasha. Sex, Morality and Censorship, brings forth a fresh perspective on decades-old folk arts, with popular folk artists presenting their views on the art form, the ruthless civil censorship, and insights into the play itself."

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Agencies
September 14,2020

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New Delhi, Sept 14: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has decided not to go ahead with any regulatory intervention on Over-the-Top (OTT) communication.

In its recommendations for the OTT services released on Monday, TRAI noted that it is "not an opportune moment to recommend a comprehensive regulatory framework for various aspects of services referred to as OTT services, beyond the extant laws and regulations prescribed presently."

It added that the matter may be looked into afresh when more clarity emerges in international jurisdictions, particularly the study undertaken by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

The authority recommended that market forces may be allowed to respond to the situation without prescribing any regulatory intervention.

The regulator, however, said that the developments shall be monitored and intervention as felt necessary shall be made at appropriate time.

It also said that no regulatory interventions are required with respect to issues related to privacy and security of OTT services at the moment.

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