India’s entertainment capital of Mumbai is in a state of shock due to the terrorist attacks across the city, with reports of at least one Bollywood superstar sleeping with a gun under his pillow.
Mumbai is home to the Hindi film industry, popularly known as Bollywood.
Iconic star Amitabh Bachchan, who has played the role of superhero in several Hindi movies, described it as a “terrible situation” that disturbed him.
“As the events of the terrorist attack unfolded in front of me, I did something for the first time and one that I had hoped never ever to be in a situation to do,” Bachchan an icon of the Hindi cinema wrote on his blog.
“Before retiring for the night, I pulled out my licensed .32 revolver, loaded it and put it under my pillow, for a very disturbed sleep,” he said.
Bachchan said he was glued to the TV screen late on Wednesday night when security personnel battled the terrorists who killed 125 people across the city formerly known as Bombay.
Today is World AIDS Day, and MTV is marking the 10th anniversary of its AIDS awareness campaign this year with an hour-long documentary by singer and Destiny’s Child founding member Kelly Rowland.
The music channel launched MTV Staying Alive in 1998 and has produced films, competitions and celebrity tie-ins to educate young people about the risks of HIV and AIDS and encourage them to talk about it.
The latest initiative is a video diary featuring Rowland who along with Beyonce Knowles helped launch the successful girl band Destiny’s Child in 1990. The group split in 2005.
In The Diary of Kelly Rowland, the 27-year-old travels to South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania and the US and meets young people affected by HIV/AIDS and those trying to educate people about the risks.
Starting today, the video can be watched at www.staying-alive.org.
Travis McCoy, lead singer of hip-hop band Gym Class Heroes, will be the Staying Alive Foundation’s ambassador in 2009. Beyonce, Mary J Blige, Justin Timberlake and Sean “Diddy” Combs have also lent their names to the campaign over the last decade.
According to MTV, 33 million people are infected with HIV globally, and the daily death rate from HIV/AIDS is 6,000 people.
French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy will also take up a role in the global campaign against AIDS, marking a new departure for the model-turned-popstar.
Bruni-Sarkozy married President Nicolas Sarkozy in February, less than three months after they met, in a whirlwind romance that generated a blaze of publicity.
She has since released a new pop album, which she had started working on before she met Sarkozy. But she said she wanted to dedicate herself to humanitarian work.
The Elysee, the presidential palace, said in a statement on Thursday that the first lady would work with the Geneva-based Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
She will give more details about her new work at a press conference today.
Back in the US, popstar Whitney Houston is denying rumors of a reunion with ex-husband Bobby Brown.
A report in Wednesday’s Chicago Sun-Times said Houston and Brown had been spotted out and about in Georgia looking romantic, but the singer’s publicist Nancy Seltzer calls speculation that the exes are getting back together “a complete fabrication.”
Houston and Brown divorced in April 2007 after 14 years of marriage. During their tumultuous union, Brown was arrested on drug and alcohol charges, and Houston twice entered drug rehabilitation programs. Houston has custody of their teenage daughter, Bobbi Kristina.