Glimpses of a Sunday at “INDIA CYCLING FESTIVAL -2017” at Nehru Center in Mumbai.

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As a hobby cyclist for decades since the 1980’s have been one of the innovative “Middle Class” commuter cyclist   in Mumbai where traffic and narrow roads make cycling a “EXTREME ADVENTURE SPORT” .Later over the decades having travelled to 62 Country’s across the Globe was happy to see the mileage hobby cycling has achieved in India in the Millenium.On Sunday(26/11/2017) visited the Nehru Center at Worli in Mumbai for the first exhibition on cycling called “INDIA CYCLING FESTIVAL”.

 

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A Photo shoot with the Rs13,00,000 “CERVELO  CYCLE”. If you thought cars and motorcycles cost a fortune among commuter vehicles then don’t be knocked out on the fact that this cycle exhibit costs only Rs 13,00,000 (Yes over a million rupees only) ! Celibrity cyclist Sir Chris .Hoy staring from the photo sponsors the brand of  “DOLAN CYCLES” costing a few lakhs of rupees.

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The Rs 7 Lakh + Cycle of Mr Pankaj.Malresha as a exhibit at the “First Indian Cycling Festival” at Nehru Centre.Mr Pankaj.Malresha is a “CYCLING ENTREPRENEUR” in Mumbai beside’s being a competitive cyclist himself and a winner of the Maharashtra State Chhatrapati Award.I purchased my “Fomas Cycle” from his father’s shop at Dadar costing a mere Rs 5000 in 2010.In 2017 Mr Pankaj.Malresha is now a director of his own cycle company called “Longshine “ which is a leading  dealer in cycles  that sells racer cycles costing lakhs of rupees. At his own  ancestral cycle shop in  Dadar normal cycles are sold for the common cyclist which includes me..“CYCLING” is no more a poor man’s tram\nsport but a expensive elite hobby of wealthy Mumbaikar’s considering the prices of cycles sold.Today in 2017 its difficult to get a decent gear racer cycle for below Rs 10,000.Recently in 2017 Mr Pankaj.Malresha copleted the “Race across America(RAAM)” with a relay team of 3 other  cyclists  who are Doctor’s by profession. Spoke to him personally and he said that it cost each cyclist Approx Rs 8 Lakhs in expences for the competition.Beside’s having the talent and stamina for long distance cycling a cyclist should also be wealthy to compete in International cycling competitions.

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The “MERCEDES BENZ CYCLE” costing Rs 1,28,000 only on display along with the “MERCEDES BENZ” car ,

 

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Prominent Cycle dealers of Mumbai had set up various exhibition stalls inside the Nehru Center hall and visitors were also allowed to test ride a few of  the cycles. -I wonder what’s the cost of Salman Khan’s cycle ? CYCLING HAS COME A   LONG WAY IN INDIA AND MUMBAI.

 

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Various Cycle stalls and cycling accessories sold and exhibited in the exhibition.

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Test riding a cycle at the exhibition.COSTS OF CYCLES RANGED FROM OVER Rs 10,000  TO LAKHS OF RUPEES !

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For the first time in India “CUSTOMIZED INDIGENOIUS BAMBOO “ cycles on display and for sale costing upwards of Rs 1 lakh.The entire cycle frame is made of bamboo.

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“CYCLING FOR A HEALTHY MIND IS PREFERRABLE TO VISITING A PSYCHOLOGIST” ! Witty T-shirts for sale at the exhibition.

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Colonel Gokulnath Sriniwas of Nashik lecturing to the audience on his preperations,endurance training and team work  in being the first Indian to successfully complete  “RAAM (Race Across America)” in June 2017. The cycle race begins on the West Coast of U.S.A and ends on the east coast  with the total distance completed being  5000 Kms .Thirty seven year old   Sriniwas completed this toughest endurance cycle race on Earth in 11 days and 11 hours competing in the 18 – 49 years age group.The maximum time allotted to complete the race is 12 days.Colonel Gokulnath.Sriniwas who is a Medical officer with the Artillery centre in Nashik had failed in his first attempt in 2016

 

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Colonel Gokulnath.Srinivasan is the first Indian to finish the race around America  in the “SOLO” category titled “RACE ACROSS AMERICA 2017”.After listening to his lecture in the conference room of the exhibition was fortunate to have a photoshoot with this young adventurer who besides having “Cycling stamina” also managed to raise the colossal funds required for such a monumental feat. REMEMBER THAT UNLIKE CRICKET, CYCLING AS A SPORT IN INDIA DOES NOT RECEIVE MUCH MEDIA PUBLICITY OR CORPORATE SPONSORSHIP.

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Shri Krishna.Prakash(I.P.S) Spl Inspector General of Police V.I.P Security is the first Indian civil servant  to have successfully completed the “IRONMAN TRIATHLON “ competition on 27th  August 2017..Here he is giving a discourse  titled ” EXPERIENCES OF A TRIATHLON EXPERT” on his experiences  and also tips for aspiring adveturer’s . In July 2017  Bollywood actor Mr Milind Soman , a household name in modelling and now endurance running brought the “IRONMAN TRIATHLON” into the imagination of the average Indian sports enthusiast by winning this toughest one day endurance race at the young age of only 50 years .He completed the endurance race in 15 hrs  and 19 minutes.The “IRONMAN TRIATHLON” consists of a 2.4 mile ( 3.86 Kms) swim, a 112 milet (180.25 Kms) cycle ride and finally culiminating in a 26.22 mile(42.29 Km) Marathon to the finish line.Mr Krishna.Prakash competed  in the “IRONMAN ” triathlon at Vichy in France completing the endurance race in 14 hrs and 8 minutes.The maximum time liminit for the entire course is 17 hours and participants who complete the race irrespective of timings are also given the title  “Ironman”  On more than one occasion during my daily cycling commute from my residence in Prabhadevi  to “M/G/M/O” pool  i have  passed alongside Milin.Soman jogging incognito and should say that after Actor Kabir bedi he is the definition of the model “MAN” to my generation.

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With Mr Bibhas Amonkar son of eminent Hindustani classical singer Late Mrs Kishori Amonkar who lives in my building and a wild life conservationist. At present Bibhas and his organization is involved in creating awareness of saving the Sahyadri mountains ecosystem by conducting cycling marathons in the mountains.In December they will be conducting a 1200 Km Cycle drive across the Sahyadri mountains.Reduce pollution by utilizing the “CYCLE” for commuting.As for me i have been cycling daily from my residence in Prabhadevi to M.G.M.O swimming pool since 2000 and happy to see that “CYCLING” as a fitness hobby elite status symbol and also as a commuter vehicle has come a long way in Mumbai after being labelled a “POOR MAN’s VEHICLE”. Did anyone in the 1990’s dream that a few “CYCLESHOPS” in Mumbai would be selling cycles ranging from a few thousand rupees to a million rupees ? All these cycles were on display at the “Nehru Center” .Its reality cycling hobby that has gripped India and Mumbai and wishing Bibhas Amonkar all success in their endeavour for conducting India’s equivalent to the “Tour de France” in the Sahyadri mountains of Western India./

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The Grand finale to the day’s Cycling was “BMX STUNT RIDING” which is honestly still in its infancy as a sport in India let alone Mumbai.Returned back home enlightened and happy about the enthusiasm and progress of Commuter and Sports cycling in India and in Mumbai.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A pictorial essay of Ballard Pier and “SEAMAN’S CLUB” on a Sunday holiday.

Sunday (12/11/2017) : – Memoirs and a guide of ” Royal Bombay Seamens Society ( Seamen Club) “ which I happened to visit after years and also noticed the changes inside this historic club. Took a selfie with the fat resident ” MOUSER” of the club. Decades of Sea sailing employment was revived at this club and was sad for the fact that ” City Kitchen “ restaurant established in 1964  by late hockey  Ex Olympian Mr Sacru
Menezes and on his demise managed by his daughter Edna  has shut down shutters permanently. Normally after a beer at SEAMANS CLUB having lunch of Pork Vindaloo was mandatory  at City Kitchen restaurant. Clhrist Church school classmate Jaffer.Gani;s landmark handicraft shop established by his family is still functioning in the premises of “Seaman’s Club” although closed today on a Sunday. Thank God Parsi landmark restaurant ” BRITTANIA” hasn’t shut shop as yet. The times they are a rapidly changing ?

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Sunday (12/11/2017) : – Believe it or not that this road is the main office road of Ballard estate on a Sunday evening. Cricket is being played on the main road and also all the narrow adjacent roads of this Prime office locality on a holiday. This type of Cricket played on the streets of Mumbai is called ” GULLY CRICKET “.Be there tomorrow on Monday and the same empty “GULLY CRICKET STREETS” is congested with officegoers and cars

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A  professional “YOUTUBE FILM SHOOT” in progress on the main street in Ballard Estate vicinity. This scene is unthinkable on any normal.”OFFICE WORKING DAY”.

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Parsi landmark restaurant ” BRITTANIA” is closed on Sunday’s as is the entire Ballard Estate locality .

 

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“PRINCEOF WALES SEAMAN’S CLUB” granite building.Prime location for the welfare of Seamen.

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Lifebuoy  at Entrance of “ROYAL BOMBAY SEAMEN’S SOCIETY”.

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Entrance  to “PRINCE OF WALES SEAMAN’S CLUB” inaugurated by the Prince of Wales  in 1928.

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The “CLUBHOUSE” recreation hall in “SEAMEN’S CLUB”.

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“JOB VACANCIES” and “SHIPPING COURSES” pasted on the notice board inside“SEAMEN’S CLUB”. I myself got employment on a few ships from advertisements on this board. The “Seamen’s Club” is a residence hostel as well as employment bureau for seafarer’s seeking employment on ships and the shipping industry.In 2017 the Shipping Industry is undergoing a employment depression which can be guaged by the lack of employment notices on the board.Hope the Shipping employment situation improves in the future.

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The author has a“SELFIE” with the fat tabby resident mouse keeper of ” Royal Bombay Seamens Society (Seaman Club) ” at Ballard Estate in Mumbai say’s.Keep’s a check on the rodent population in the club premises.The “Seamen’s Club” has always had a resident cat roaming the building since the time i first began visiting this club in 1983 after employment in the “Shipping Industry” as a Marine Engineer.

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The recreation hall of the seamen’s club on the ground floor  has a “Cable T,V” channel for viewing beside’s  “Table Tennis”  and two billiard tables. On board ships i was a decent table tennis player beside’s being a vorascious reader .Bizzarely the movie “RUSTOM” was being screened and whiled away my time until 1800 hrs  watching this sea-faring semi fictional movie based on the infamous “Commander Kawas .M.Nanavati V/s State of Maharashtra” court murder trial case ,Parsi aristocrat Kawas.M.Nanavati was accused of killing his wife ‘s lover Sindhi  business tycoon Mr Prem.Ahuja . This Case polarized the wealthy Parsi and Sindhi community of that era and was a benchmark in changing the jury system of judgement in the Indian judiciary.This was the case that launched young Sindhi Lawyer Ram.Jethmalani’s career in 1959 while making “Blitz” tabloid Parsi  owner and publisher Late Russi.Karanjia a household publishing celibrity. I myself in 1990  had sailed on the Scindia ship “Jala Tapi” on which just before my joining  the Navigating officer  sailing with his wife was accused of throwing her overboard.After spending almost over a decade in jail the officer was released for lack of evidence but sadly his career and life was ruined if genuinely not guilty.SEX AND CRIME DOES SELL ESPECIALLy IF IT INVOLVES GLAMOUR AND POLITICAL POWER.

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The“BAR ROOM” of “SEAMEN’S CLUB” opens at 1800 hrs in the evening and closes at 2200 hrs..Excellent palatial hall which previously had a open-air garden for external dining and beer drinking. Only beer is served at the bar.

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“CHEERS “ :-  Seafarer/Traveller/Blogger Rudolph.A.Furtado at the “SEAMEN’S CLUB” bar.No blueblooded seafarer can leave this club without a drink of beer at the bar !

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Dog’s and cat’s are always attracted towards me and the club’s “MOUSER” is happy in  my presence at the bar,Seem’s to be overfed with the food morsel’s of seamen dining at the bar.After my drink had a little relaxation and finally drove home on my “Bajaj Wind -123 CC” which has its own little history .

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Beer drinking is a popular pass-time among seafarer’s and sold at the minimum price in the club .Tall seafaring voyages,etc are discussed over beer and snacks in the excellent club environment.Sadly the beautiful outdoors open air garden lawn is closed and have wonderful memories of sipping beer under a moonlight sky in the heart of downtown Mumbai.Standard price of Rs 150/bottle and don’t remember the price i paid in the 1980’s.over the devades inflation has taken its toll on the average seafarer but beer is still the cheapest in town at Seamans club.

 

 

 

 

 

ONE OF THE LAST SINGLE SCREEN THEATRE STANDING :-1905 built IMPERIAL CINEMA

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Happened to visit Lamington Road,the “ELECTRONICS STREET” of Mumbai to purchase a Laptop and came across “IMPERIAL CINEMA”.This “Single Screen” theatre built in 1905 is the second oldest theatre in Mumbai and in the last stages of its over a century lifespan as can be seen through the photographs.The Topography of Bombay now Mumbai is changing rapdly with “MULTIPLEX THEATRES” replacing decades or even a century old “SINGLE SCREEN THEATRES” so hence pay a “MUSEUM VISIT” to Lamington road to see one of the last century old theatre of Mumbai.I myself have fond memories of visiting “Single Screen Theatres” to see the occasional Hindi movies with my mother a Hindi film addict during my schooling years. During the 1970’s era excellent Hindi films used to be screened.

 

Citizens opinions :Law Commission invited views regarding legalizing Betting in India.

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West-Indies-A-tour-of-IndiaThe Law Commission of India has invited views of members of the public on the issue of legalizing betting and gambling. See the public appeal reproduced below. I would request maximum racing professionals and race-goers to respond with their views by sending a mail to the Commission.

The Supreme Court, in Board of Control for Cricket in India v. Cricket Association of Bihar
& Ors., (2016) 8 SCC 535, mandated the Law Commission of India to study the possibility of
legalizing betting in India, inter-alia, observed thus:
… the recommendation made by the Committee that betting should be legalized by law,
involves the enactment of a Law which is a matter that may be examined by the Law
Commission and the Government for such action as it may consider necessary in the facts
and circumstances of the case.
While considering the issue, the Commission discerned that gambling is also a subject which
is very closely associated with betting. While considering legalization of betting, leaving aside
gambling may render the whole exercise futile. Therefore, the Commission would like to study the
issue of legalizing betting as well as gambling in the country.
Various media reports time and again point out that betting and gambling, though not legal in
India, is practised across the country clandestinely. These reports argue that many families are
rendered bankrupt and many people are behind the bars owing to these practices. Strict rules against
betting and gambling have not necessarily acted as a deterrent. Online gambling and betting is
another area which has become very difficult to curb. It is understood that a lot of money is involved
in illegal gambling business, creating almost a parallel economy, converting legally earned money
into black money that is drained to gambling operators in other countries online.
The Commission has been mulling this idea for quite some time now. Discussions were
initiated with some of the stakeholders and the Commission is working towards a possible report.
Will legalizing betting and gambling help in curbing the illegal activities undertaken by the citizens of
our country in this regard? Will licensing such activities help the Government earn substantial
revenue and generate employment? How far will legalizing betting and gambling be morally correct
in the Indian circumstances? What could be a possible model by which the people engaging in such
activities can be safeguarded against bankruptcy? If legalized, should foreign betting and gambling
companies be allowed to have a foothold in the country? These are certain basic areas that need to be
addressed, along with any other issues that may come up while considering the matter.
The Commission would like to invite views and suggestions from all concerned – the
stakeholders and the general public, with regard to legalizing betting and gambling, so as to arrive at a
judicious opinion and make suitable suggestions and recommendations to the Government, which are
balanced and protect the interests of the common man and the stakeholders alike. Your suggestions
may be sent either by post or in person, to the Law Commission of India, 14th Floor, Hindustan Times
House, Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi – 110 001; or by email at lci-dla@nic.in [i.e.,
LCIDLAt>NICIN]; or by fax at +91 11 23355741, so as to reach the Commission
within 30 days.
[Dr. Justice B S Chauhan]

REPUBLIC DAY -2017 :- LEGALIZE SPORTS BETTING IN INDIA.

Thursday(26-1-2016) :- On “REPUBLIC DAY” i voice my opinion for “LEGALIZING SPORTS BETTING” in India .Its a “Fool Proof” method of prevention of illegitimate money besides providing legal employment .I had started the game titled “Mittoo alias Mittoo the poppat” on “F.B” akin to a “Stock Market Game” and have proved to critics as well as observers that speculating on “SPORTS RESULTS” is a skill and not random gambling.”ILLEGAL CRICKET BETTING” is a part of our folklore also resulting in damaging the careers and reputations of a few players and officials.I have started a page on “F.B” titled Legalize Cricket Betting”.
HERE ARE THE PRESENT FINANCIAL STATEMENTS OF MY GAME :- As the manager of “Mittoo alias Mittoo the poppat” estate i have invested Rs 5,35,72,000 in Debt bonds and mutual funds as fixed income for the estate.
“SPECULATION/BETTING BUDGET” of the Estate is now Rs 5,20,15,000 .
If the estate goes bankrupt then i close the game as i would not spend the “INVESTMENT MONEY” of the estate( Rs 5,35,72,000).IMPORTANT RULE IN ANY SPECULATION IS KNOWING WHEN TO QUIT IF IN LOSSES.This is a game and all betting is notional and no actual money involved. A game of money & luck akin to playing the “STOCK MARKET”..
THE GAME IS STILL ONN AND BANKRUPTCY A DISTANT DREAM.
The Estate of “Mittoo alias mittoo the poppat” thanks the followers of the game which also teaches the method of earning money through “SPORTS BETTING AND SPECULATION”. Remember,”YOU CAN FOOL SOME PEOPLE SOMETIME BUT YOU CAN NEVER FOOL ALL THE PEOPLE ALL THE TIME”.WHEN WILL SPORTS BETTING BE LEGALIZED IN INDIA ?

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MASCOT OF MY GAME “MITTOO ALIAS MITTOO THE POPPAT”  :- Late  22 year old Alexandrine parakeet “Mittoo”.

“JACKFRUIT”, the most underrated fruit and tree.

DSCN6486” Jack of all and master at eating “JACKFRUITS” ? Its “Jackfruit season” in Mumbai with truckload of jackfruits having arrived in our locality for the Hindu festival of “Vata Purnima” on Sunday(19-6-2016).

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Its auspicious to serve jackfruits on this day after the normal Puja rituals..One of my favourite fruits and for the last few days it was “JACKFRUIT CARNIVAL ” at my house.The “Jackfruit” is one of the most useful tree’s and nothing is wasted from this tree during its lifetime and after its death. The delicious fruits are eaten and cooked into various Indian recipe’s and finally the timber derived from this tree is second best after teak wood.Royal mansion’s and palaces in India have support timber pillars and carvings made from jackfruit tree.Tourists visiting India please don’t return home without a taste of the “Jackfruit”.

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Changing face of “SOBO”

DSCN6477On Thursday(16-6-2016) after ages visited my old youth and bachelor hide-outs in “Sobo(South Bombay)” locality , a tourist in my own city. Was traumatized to see “Metro House” building  which housed the iconic “CAFE MONDEGAR” partly in ruins due to the fire that engulfed it .Miraculously cafe Mondegar although closed is completely intact with artist Mario Miranda’s cartoon’s on its iconic walls.Is this the end to the over century old “Metro  House ” which could face demolition as the damage to a wing of this iconic building has caused parts of it to collapse onto the main road.Entire main Colaba traffic is blocked due to debris of “Metro Building”.

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Is “CAFE MONDEGAR” with its cute “Juke Box” history in 2016  or will it re-open ? Anyone who has lived in Mumbai or now a “N.R..I” must have definitely visited Cafe Mondegar which on every  New Year’s eve had a waiting list queue catering to loners, singles and couples.Although a niche restaurant having the ambience of a  “5-Star restaurant” minus the A/C its prices were affordable to the average Mumbaikar. .Later visited the plush iconic Taj Mahal hotel and was sad to know that the ages old “Starboard Bar” restaurant which had live music has disappeared having been shut in December-2015 ! Thankfully the “Nalanda” book shop in this hotel hasn’t closed permanantly although temporarily  closed for renovation.Beauty of “Nalanda “ was that although situated in a 5-star hotel the prices of the books and magazines was normal as sold in any common shop.If lucky you could also rub shoulders with celibrities or even meet a author !

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“Rhythm House” a iconic music shop landmark of Mumbai  closed months ago.Later visited “B.N.H.S(Bombay Natural History Society)” building which thankfully hasn’t changed much nor hasn’t disintegrated much !Visited the library that houses some of the best “Natural History” books on India and the World.Was glad to see  the library room ceiling being made water-proof after years of leakage.The entire libary book shelf used to be covered with plastic  sheets to prevent seepage of rain water from the leaking terrace of this heritage building.Suddenly i realized that i was growing old with the fact that landmarks of the 20th century were gradually being phased out or tragically succumbing to unforeseen calamities.Thankfully main Colaba locality upto Sasoon Dock hasn’t changed much and has preserved its charm of a combination of the old and the modern existing in perfect harmony .A few photo’s of tragic “Metro Building”,the classic Colaba road  and iconic. “Cafe Mondegar.

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“The Rozabel line” by Ashwin.Sanghi:- A review by blogger Rudolph.A.Furtado

“THE ROZABEL LINE” By Ashwin.Sanghi :- Just finished reading this semi-fictional novel that is a Asian model of the “Da Vinci Code” with religion being the focus of the story. Author Ashwin.Sanghi is known as the Indian Dan.Brown for his novels being religious mysteries akin to Dan.Brown. Ahwin.Sanghi first published “Rozabel Line” in 2007 under the pseudonym of Shawn.Higgins.In 2008 he published the book under his own name and it became a best-seller.Bizarrely he has written in the future tense with the year 2012 being central in the story’s plot which is the main flaw of this book post 2011 and the assassination of Osama Bin Laden.Osama Bin Laden died in 2011 but seems author Ashwin.Sanghi like most of the World presumed that Osama Bin Laden had died and his body never found or he simply disappeared from the face of the Earth. Hence he gambled on his prophecy and “DATED” Osama Bin Laden’s fictional death as happening in 2012 ! I am sure that sales of this novel must have dropped abruptly post 2011 and the death of osama in Pakistan. Otherwise its a excellent researched novel that also helps the reader discover and learn about many religions and customs barring the fictional account of Jesus having been married and buried in Kashmir.
Ashwin.Sanghi should pen his next historical-fictional novel on how did Pakistan not know that Osama was in Abbotabad ? Still better is betting on the ultimate end-game of Dawood .Ibrahim and hope he is more accurate in his futuristic predictions .Ha Ha Has Hee hee hee ?