Thursday, January 15, 2009

CNN Transcript: An interview with Asma Al Assad, Syrian First Lady.

ASMA AKHRAS AL-ASSAD, SYRIAN FIRST LADY: Just imagine your children living in Gaza. How could that reality be? Let's talk through the scenario.

You wake up in the morning, you feed -- you give your children a glass of milk. Mothers in Gaza can't do that. But why? Because no milk gets through.

You send your children off to school knowing that they'll be safe, knowing that they're going to get a good education. Mothers in Gaza don't do that. Children don't go to school because it's not safe, because -- it's just beyond belief, to be honest.

You cook a meal. Mothers in Gaza can't cook. Why can't they cook?
Because they don't have access to fuel. They don't even have access to the basic food stuff (ph) that is required to get a meal together. So children don't eat.

Mothers -- think about when you put your children to bed at night. This is something I think on a daily basis. You put your children to bed at night and you expect to see them in the morning. That's a luxury that people in Gaza just do not have.

So what would it have been like for you having -- living under those circumstances? That is something that we just cannot survive and wait for it to stop.

CAL PERRY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Let me ask you this, are you sad? Are you frustrated? Are you angry? I mean, you have to go to these meetings, you have to go to these dinners. Is it difficult with what's going on?

AL-ASSAD: It's been difficult to smile, and that's not just me, it's a lot of people that I'm meeting, it's a lot of people that I'm talking to. It's the U.N. agencies on the ground that are seeing some really horrific things.

The stories of the psychological trauma that we're not hearing on our TVs, we're not seeing on our TVs and we're not reading in our newspapers. It's something that's going to have a long-term effect on life not just in the region, but actually in the global community that we all live in, because when you see people suffering like this, it doesn't give you a sense of optimism, it doesn't give you a sense of hope. If anything, it pushes you to become more desperate, and when you are desperate, you have nothing to live for.

PERRY: Now, the Israelis say they're protecting themselves, right to self-defense, they're under bombardment of missiles, their children are under threat.

What's your response to that?

AL-ASSAD: Lift the embargo. Lift the embargo. It will -- lift the embargo and engage in a peace process, a real process.

As you said, talk is cheap. It's not enough to say that we want peace.
What are you going to do to achieve peace? What we're seeing on our TV is not a step in the right direction.

PERRY: Do you have any optimism for the future, in the near future?

AL-ASSAD: You have to remain optimistic. You have to remain -- you have to try and keep working towards your goals and objectives, otherwise you get sucked in with everything else that's going on. So, yes, you have to.

It's difficult, especially at times like this, that you have to keep looking in the direction that you want to go. You have to keep not just looking, you need to keep working towards it, to be honest. And you need to grab every opportunity, every platform, every exchange, every experience to work towards the agenda that is set, and that is peace.

Again, give peace a chance.

CNN International.

Arre Deewano Mujhe Pehchano

Airing Star Plus on Friday, Jan 16th at 20.00
The fun and Laughter has reached a new high with the eight celebrity contestants who not only pull a fast one on the unassuming ‘common man’ but also make him roll with laughter. This Friday four ‘behrupiye’ will perform their wittiest best on ‘Arre Deewano Mujhe Pehchano’. Mona Singh, Mahesh Manjerakar, Yash Tonk & Divya Dutta will be the four maharathis to perform this Friday. Guess who will be the beherupiya of this week?
The sultry host Kavita Kaushik along with the lover boy Gadhashree, this week will witness some of the best comedy acts.
So watch out for:
  Mona Singh act as an eccentric mother in law

Leading from the forefront, Mona Singh starts off the show disguised as the fat mother in law where she tries to steal a bride for her son. She bumps into a girl who is supposedly engaged to her son but is dating somebody else in the hotel. The guy sitting next to her is perplexed throughout the gag not knowing how to react to his girl friend being engaged to somebody else.
Mahesh Manjerakar in disguise of a spooky broker

Witness what happens to a young girl who comes to see an apartment and is spooked into stories and the legend! Mahesh shares his experience on how renting flat in Mumbai is tougher day by day in his stand up act.
Yash Tonk dares to put up an eunuch act
Watch out for Yash Tonk who dares to enter a dance workshop dressed as a eunuch and manages to fool one and all including the trainer giving him hard time training Yash with few good dance moves.
Divya Dutta, the innovative beautician
Last but not the least our very own Divya Dutta disguised as the beautician makes a nimbooda out of TV actor Mauli Ganguly’s friend who falls for Divya’s ‘Lemon week’ deceit. Divya shares her trade secrets on how she makes people look beautiful in her beauty parlour!
Watch out for your favorite celebrity playing gags and pranks on the chosen prey. You can be the next victim!! Stay tuned to watch the laugh riot ‘Arre Deewano Mujhe Pehchano’.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Sharjah City Centre celebrates its expansion

Sharjah City Centre celebrated the opening of its major expansion renovation and redevelopment programme on Tuesday that began last spring. The substantial expansion will be home to some significant new fashion brands and offer customers unparalleled choice and value. With more than 20 new retail outlets, cafes, and restaurants Sharjah City Centre is now brighter, bolder and better than ever before.

"We are constantly looking to offer our customers the greatest choice and value, and the result of the redevelopment of the already successful Sharjah City Centre shows that we have undertaken this project with the needs of our customers in mind," said Ali Al Abdulla, VP-Asset Management-Shopping Malls, Majid Al Futtaim Properties.
"Even though we are already the highest drawing shopping destination in the emirate, we want to make sure that the development of Sharjah City Centre continues our commitment to bringing the best value oriented retail brands to the region--giving out customers a real and varied choice, while at the same time keeping the Centre fresh and interesting," he concluded.
Senior government officials from Sharjah visited the mall in the morning to take a tour of the expansion and expressed delight at the timely completion of the development. The new extension has been designed to expand the world-class shopping facilities to residents and tourists of the Emirate. It has also helped in introducing new international chains and generating additional employment opportunities in Sharjah.
The expansion project now takes the mall's retail area to more than 37,500 square metres, with a total of 114 shops. Among the new stores opening, four are being introduced for the first time in the emirate. These include the UK's leading fashion retailer New Look, Swedish retail giant H&M and worldwide book retailer, Borders, all opening their first flagship stores at Sharjah City Centre. BHS Women will be the first store of its kind in the Middle East.

Other new additions include fashion retailers Pierre Cardin, Monsoon, Evans and Jennyfer; shoe retailers Pablosky and Vincci; lingerie brands La Senza and Women's Secret and department store BHS, among many others.


The redevelopment also saw some stores like Areej moving from their current locations, which facilitated the introduction of a bigger and better family entertainment pace. At the same time, Magic Planet has relocated to the first floor and has introduced some exciting new rides for 2009.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards Live on Star World at 4am on Monday Jan 12 and the same day encore at 7pm.

Drew Barrymore, one of the presenter.

Celebrating the best in television and motion pictures, this prestigious event honors the best box office champs, critically-acclaimed arthouse movies and ratings-toppings TV dramas.
Fashion followers and celebrity scouts won’t want to miss the Red Carpet Pre-Show Special from 8am. In this one-hour glam-fest, find out who scores in the all-important style stakes, which stars rule the red carpet and who are this year’s hot favourites.

In the film category, the stage is set for a three-way battle. The Brad Pitt drama The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Meryl Streep’s Doubt and director Ron Howard’s Frost/Nixon are all tied with five nominations apiece.
Among the contenders in the TV categories, nominees include former Golden Globe winners Sally Field (Brothers & Sisters), America Ferrera (Ugly Betty), Tina Fey (30 Rock) and Tony Shaloub (Monk).
Steven Spielberg will also be presented with the prestigious Cecil B DeMille Award. The two-time Golden Globe winner is being honored for his outstanding contributions to the film and TV industries.
As in previous years, Hollywood’s best and brightest will be presenting the statuettes. 2009’s list of presenters includes such luminaries as Drew Barrymore, Aaron Eckhart, Laurence Fishburne, Salma Hayek, Jennifer Lopez and Seth Rogen.
Don’t miss all the stars, surprises and style of The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards when STAR WORLD telecasts the event live.

YEH RISHTA KYA KEHLATA HAI on Star Plus from January 12.

After eight years of delivering innovative programming and fresh content on the small screen,  STAR PLUS, General Entertainment Channel is now all set to mark the beginning of the Year 2009, with the launch of Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai.  The new primetime fiction show that premiers on January 12, Monday-Friday at 8.00pm on STAR PLUS will have a mega line-up of promotional activities and marketing blitz to bring it closer to its viewers.

Upholding traditional Indian beliefs and value systems, STAR Plus celebrates the institution of marriage as in the union of two individuals, their ideologies and their endeavor to shed their inhibitions and experience the wonderful expression called ‘love’. Building on the show’s premise of ‘Marriage being a journey of celebration and not just a destination’

Commenting on this launch event, Anupam Vasudev, Executive Vice President Marketing, STAR India Pvt Ltd said, “Yeh Rishta is a very traditional and endearing concept with the central idea of finding love after marriage. With this program STAR Plus has once again invested in its belief that relationships need to be nurtured and constantly renewed.  In keeping with this commitment to our viewers, Star Plus has created an opportunity for 50 couples from across India to renew their marriage vows and revisit their magic moments when they were first bound in matrimony.”

Monica Mogre starting Jan 16 on Zee TV

Monic Mogre at 8:00pm (UAE) on Friday and Saturday.

Maa on Zee TV

The show that attempts to highlight a mother’s significance in our lives debuts on 18th January 2009 and is scheduled from Sunday - Thursday at 8.00pm (UAE).
‘Maa’, a story about the struggles of three siblings who suddenly find themselves stripped of the shade and protection of their mother’s caring arms. Sacrifice, care, warmth, patience, tolerance, tenderness, shelter, etc come together to form the perfect image of a Mother who stands in the face of challenges in life. Destiny intervenes and separates the mother and children from each other. ‘Maa’ is about this very severing of the maternal bond and the tribulations that arise thereof.

Speaking on the launch, Zee TV Content Head, Mr. Rajeev Kheror said, “The channel has made successful shows with various subjects like social issues, political stigmas, paranormal forces, mythology and comedy but a topic like this was never touched before with such depth. We thought of starting the New Year with a propitious subject. The word ‘Maa’ spells purity and piety. The story is a mother’s description of her trials and endeavors to create a happy family; the story of the children’s suffering when they realize that they have been separated from their mother. The character of Maa is being essayed by Chitrapama who makes her comeback to the small screen after a hiatus of 6 years. She was earlier seen in shows like Thodi Si bewafai, Kamini Damini, the popular movie Deewanapan and also was the lead in a Tamil movie. We have Amar Upadhyay playing her husband and three young kids, again popular faces on Indian television, Aditi, Shyam and Hirak who form the Bharadwaj family based out of Mumbai.”
Adding further he said, “Our byline reads, ‘Dhoop mein thandi chaav’ and literally translates to a mothers caring hand in the face of adversity.
Story briefly

The show is about Apara’s tirade against society and her three children’s suffering in the light of the fact that they are separated from her safety. Circumstances force Apara and her children to seek refuge in another house and how she overcomes the obstacles and tries to come out unscathed and unmarred, at the same time not letting go of her family’s honor.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Nach Baliye 4 in Dubai

STAR Plus sends 1 COUPLE to perform on the sets of NACH BALIYE 4, in Mumbai…
Glory. Fear. Pride. Envy. It’s amazing how much you can fit into a pair of dancing shoes! STAR Plus and Tang present a dance competition - "Nach Baliye 4" Decibel Challenge at “Chi at The Lodge”, Oud Metha, Dubai every Saturday 10pm onwards, starting Jan 3. The event is in association with Rufi Real Estate, Hitachi, Bajaj Veola, Colgate and Aveo.

From jhatkaas to thumkaas, watch the jodis sweat it out and put their best foot forward…all this to make it winning couple who will get to perform be on the sets of Nach Baliye 4, in Mumbai…
Nach Baliye - Season 4 airs every Friday & Saturday @ 10pm only on STAR Plus.

Shree: A New Show on Zee TV

A love story with a paranormal element!

This is the first time that a love story and a paranormal angle are being merged together to form a show like never before.
Airs every Sunday to Wednesday at 11.00pm (UAE) on ZEE TV