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I am the same person who came to this city Mumbai a few years ago to act in Hindi films, and I am just continuing doing that. I did not change as a person. All that happens is people change around me.
The centuries-old history and culture of India, majestic architectural monuments and museums of Delhi, Agra and Mumbai have a unique attractive force.
Mumbai may not be my city. But it is my kind of city.
In Mumbai, the air is saltier. The sea is roilier. The traffic is snarlier. The pinks are pinker. The ostentation is crazier.
Mumbai's infectious. Once you start living in Mumbai, working in Mumbai, I don't think you can live anywhere else.
The thing about Mumbai is you go five yards and all of human existence is revealed. It's an incredible cavalcade of life, and I love that.
Terrorism doesn't have a border. Terrorists attack Mumbai, Peshawar, and also Paris.
I am an engineer by profession, but I knew I wanted to act. My parents always encouraged me, and when my father shifted to Mumbai for work for a brief while, I came along.
Mum is from West Waterford, Dungarvan. She's a farmer's daughter. She's a nurse. She left home very young - I think she was 18 - and went off to train as a nurse in England. My dad is from India, just south of Mumbai. He was one of the first in his family to go to college, and he went to England in the '70s; he emigrated there.
When I told people in Dubai that I am going to leave my job here and head to Mumbai, they were convinced that I will not survive in the dust, grime, pollution.
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After 'Chandni Bar' there was a shutdown of such bars in Mumbai. After 'Page 3' people started avoiding such events. 'Traffic Signal' exposed the money flow through the mafia. I'm not apologetic about the brutal truth in my films. Almost 70% of my films are based on reality, and 30% I fictionalize or change to suit my film.
I came to Mumbai in 2000 to do a hotel management course. Following this, I worked as a marketing executive with Hotel Sheraton in Muscat for a year. It was in 2004 that I participated in the Gladrags Mr. India contest and bagged the most popular model award. After that, I did few ramp shows and ads.
Karan Singh Grover
Diwali means family, so either I go down to Bangalore, or my family comes to Mumbai. I always ensure I take a few days off.
More people are asking me to come and sing for them, so obviously I am getting more work. But apart from singing, I have been parallely programming and producing music tracks and assisting music directors. That is my bread and butter, which is how I survived in Mumbai. Now I can't leave it.
When I look back at my journey, it gives me a sense of confidence. I have been through an odd journey from Delhi to Mumbai, struggling, not having a job, shifting houses... Today, I am giving interviews. So it does give me gratitude and confidence. The fear is gone.
In every conversation I've had - with housewives in Mumbai, with middle-class people, upper-class, in the slums - everyone says there is an underlying consciousness of karma. That people believe in karma - that what you're putting out is going to come back. If I do something to you, the energy of it is going to come back to me in the future.
I love being in Mumbai and want to continue being here.
I have a lot of friends, but my biggest fear is loneliness. I miss my family in Mumbai, and my biggest nightmare every day is to go back home alone.
Mumbai is like Manhattan. There's a certain pace, a social life and the thrill of a professional life.
Moving to Mumbai was difficult, as survival was a major concern. I was not from a very well-to-do family.
I love trying out different cuisines. In Delhi, I love Megu at the Leela, and TK's at the Hyatt. I also enjoy Khan Chacha's rolls. In Mumbai, it's Royal China and Shiro. And in Bangalore, I like the food at Bricklane.
It's not so much what you learn about Mumbai, it's what you learn about yourself, really. It's a funny old hippie thing, but it's true as well. You find out a lot about yourself and your tolerance, and about your inclusiveness.
My father is conservative but has always supported my decisions. He lets me take my own decisions. His only condition while allowing me to come to Mumbai was that my mother must accompany me.
Usually, I head for another performance or back to Mumbai right after my performance. But whenever I come to Delhi, I make it a point to stay back in the city for at least a day so that I can unwind.
I love to get on the road, but I also think arriving is such a thrill. Turning up at the train station in Mumbai, for example, to see people hanging off all the wonderful old carriages. It's extraordinary - everyone sitting with their chickens on their laps, moving forward but not going anywhere fast.
When I used to teach yoga in Bangalore and Mumbai, I noticed many clients struggling to cope with their weight. During some days, they would come in with plans to work out harder than usual because of events they'd have to attend later that week. The insecurity of appearance is something everyone goes through... even I.
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