TWO FOR.... THURSDAY
The 1960 classic Mughal-e-Azam, recently colourised, opens tomorrow at the Des Plaines Theatre (1/2 hour from Chicago; the Metra train station is less than a block away from the theatre). It's a rare chance to see it on the big screen; apparently it boasts the best and most moving music our friend Bindi has ever heard in an Indian fillum. So clear out three hours (plus an hour for the r/t commute) and go. Timings and directions are at www.desplainescinema.com.
It seems there was a strike, and Mysore (12-ish hours ahead of us) was shut down today. Something tells me it was business as usual at the Ashtanga Yoga Nilam. From today's Star of Mysore (www.starofmysore.com):
TRADE BANDH HITS CONSUMERS
Mysore, Mar. 31 (BLU&BRS)- Majority of traders in the heart of the city and extensions downed shutters today to observe bandh in response to the call given by All India Federation of Traders Association demanding modifications in VAT (Value Added Tax) system. The State Government is implementing VAT from tomorrow.
Consumers dependent on the shops for their many daily needs were left to fend for themselves.
They could be seen swarming around a few shops which were kept half-open in the morning.
Residents of Agrahara, Nanjumalige, Vidyaranyapuram and surrounding areas, took the brunt of the bandh. These areas witnessed curfew-like atmosphere in many thoroughfares.
However, hotels, drug stores, liquor shops and cinema halls conducted their business as usual.
Business establishments in major commercial areas like Devaraj Urs road, Sayyaji Rao Road, Shivarampet, Old Bank Road, Ashoka Road, Irwin Road, Dhanvanthri Road and Gandhi Square remained closed.
Nearly a thousand businessmen took out a procession from K.R. Circle to DC's office at noon holding placards. A delegation of the traders submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner.
The memorandum urged the Government to raise the turnover ceiling for VAT from Rs. 10 lakh to Rs. 25 lakh.
It also urged the Government to suspend harsh measures like fine and punishment for violation of VAT during the first two years. It said it was not proper for implementing VAT in some States while sparing others.
The memorandum also opposed imposition of other Central and State taxes along with VAT.
The procession was led by Mysore Chamber of Commerce and Industry President H.N. Ramathirtha, Hon. Secretary A.S. Satish, Mysore Grain Merchants Association President C. Krishnappa, APMC Grain Merchants Association Director C. Narayan and others.
The bandh at APMC in Bandi-palya badly hit the farmers who had come along with their commodities.
The vendors of perishables such as flowers, fruits and vegetables at the locations of their daily business, however, carried on their trade without any hindrance.
The consumers heaved a sigh of relief for the small mercies shown by at least a section of traders.
Meanwhile, some shops on Devaraj Urs Road opened after the procession passed through. Some activists, supporting the bandh, were seen forcing them to down the shutters.