Mumbai’s corporators have earned some reknown for travelling abroad to study a host of civic issues, ranging from landfill management in Singapore to the Bus Rapid Transport System (BRTS) in Istanbul. In a surprise move this year, the councillors have demanded a trip to Andaman and Nicobar Islands to know more about freedom fighter Veer Savarkar. A senior Sena leader recently expressed her wish to see the areas Savarkar traversed through in the islands by organising an official trip for all Standing Committee members.
Record price for F N Souza
Auction house Saffronart’s Evening Sale of Modern and Contemporary Art, which took place on September 10 at The Oberoi in New Delhi, saw Bombay Progressive artist F N Souza’s Man and Woman Laughing selling for Rs 16.84 crore, the highest ever paid for any work by him. The oil-on-masonite work, made during a particularly important period in the artist’s career, comes from the collection of Harold Kovner, who discovered Souza’s work in 1956 and financially supported and promoted him. Record prices were also fetched by three other lots, including G Ravinder Reddy’s massive sculpture Devi (Rs 2.7 crore), Nilima Sheikh’s River: Carrying Across, Leaving Behind (Rs 1.02 crore) and Sailoz Mukherjea’s Untitled (Dreaming Girl) (Rs 10.8 lakh). Apart from Souza, some of the highest prices were fetched by other modern masters, including Tyeb Mehta’s Untitled (Standing Figure), which sold for the second highest bid of the evening at Rs 11.51 crore, and S H Raza’s Surya Namaskar, which went for Rs 4.8 crore.
The chief minister’s right-hand man in the bureaucracy, Praveen Pardeshi, was left red-faced during his last official foreign trip with Devendra Fadnavis when he forgot to carry his old passport with the US visa. He had to face ample flak from the media after reports of the flight being delayed due to the wait for Pardeshi’s visa. While Fadnavis’s principal secretary’s case caught the media glare, sources said one of former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan’s secretaries too had faced an almost similar situation. The bureaucrat had completely forgotten to carry his passport. However, fortunately, unlike Pardeshi, this official realised his blooper before reaching the airport. Racing against time, he turned his car around at Worli to fetch his passport.