Saturday, January 12, 2008

Cherie Blair takes Mumbai’s poor children to film set

Cherie Blair, wife of former British prime minister Tony Blair, accompanied a group of underprivileged children to the picturesque Film City in Mumbai yesterday evening and visited the sets of an under-production film starring Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan.

She briefly visited the sets of Alladin at a helipad atop a hill inside the sprawling Film City complex in northwest Mumbai. The shooting for the film, however, was going on at Studio No.8 when Blair and the children reached the set.

The group went around the sets, which recreated a mansion with a huge library. Bachchan was shooting there earlier in the day. The actor waited to receive Blair and the children at the set but left for home as they did not arrive till early evening.

The visitors were delayed as they were stuck in one of Mumbai's monstrous traffic jams as they travelled from south Mumbai to Film City, a distance of around 40km.

Actor Mayur, who as a child attained fame by playing young Bachchan in several films, chaperoned Blair to the Film City. He took her and the children around and showed them important shooting locations in the sprawling complex.

Blair has come to India to attend the 10th anniversary celebrations of the Loomba Trust in New Delhi on Sunday. She is actively involved with the trust since it was founded in Britain in 1997.

She expressed desire to meet the underprivileged Indian children, whom the Loomba Trust helps pursue their education. In Mumbai, she met about 20 of them along with their mothers. Blair arrived in Mumbai from New Delhi, and was accompanied by Raj Loomba, founder chairman and trustee of the Loomba Trust.

Loomba said that the trust offers scholarship of Rs500 each to 100 poor boys in each of the 29 states of India. The scholarship is given for a period of five years. The trust is currently helping 36,000 children of poor widows in India, irrespective of religion, caste or gender. The students are selected from the government-run schools, Loomba said.

Source: http://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/Display_news.asp?section=World_News&subsection=India&month=January2008&file=World_News2008011112411.xml

Forget yourself for others, and others will never forget you.

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