Silence zones being ‘silenced’?
Though the 10-day-long Ganesh festival will be celebrated in September this year, activists, as well as BMC officers, have started working on several issues, including registration of Ganesh Mandals. However, there is hardly any talk on the implementation of silence zones this year. Last year, the Maharashtra government changed rules which led to cancellation of 1,537 silence zones in the western metropolis. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) that had identified 1,117 silence zones in 2009 sent a list of only 110 zones so far for approval to the government. Activists fear several silence zones in the city are likely to be ‘silenced’ for fear of restrictions by the authorities.
Heritage tour in the offing
St. Thomas Cathedral, which gives the Churchgate railway station its name, has organised a heritage tour of the oldest British structures of the city as a part of its tercentenary celebrations. The first-of-its-kind tour had received a very good response. Enthused by the response, the trustees of the church have decided to organise second such tour on July 7. Visitors will get to see a silver chalice presented by Gerald Aungier, the then governor of Bombay who laid the foundation stone of the church, to the Anglican Christian community in 1675, which is among the historic treasures at the church. The architecture and the pieces of history attached to it make the tour a very memorable one.
Biopic on Marathi writer
Marathi writer Purushottam Laxman Deshpande, also known by his initials ‘Pu La’, remains a favourite of readers even after two decades of his death. To coincide with his birth centenary celebrations slated to start later this year, actor-director Mahesh Manjrekar is coming up with a biopic on him. The writer who created his space in the hearts of readers through his unmatched humour wore several other hats such as teacher, actor, composer, film and TV producer, film-maker, music composer, singer, scriptwriter, lyricist, theater person, orator, socio-political observer and commentator. It will be interesting to see whether and how far the biopic is successful in capturing Deshpande’s versatility.
Museum of aquatic fauna to come up
The forest department has developed the Coastal and Marine Biodiversity Centre as a part of the proposed flamingo sanctuary and the mangroves conservation centre at Airoli in Navi Mumbai. The centre will have yet another attraction by the time it is thrown open to the public by this year end, that is the first ever museum of aquatic fauna. Recently a Blue Whale corpse had flown ashore at Uran last month. Officials decided to preserve the skeleton of the giant fish. Most of such corpses in last few years were buried at the shore itself. Now skeletons will be recovered from all such places and will be preserved at the centre.