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Shabana Cuts A Bizarre Birthday Cake In The Shape Of A Mumbai Slum

Veteran Bollywood actress  Shabana Azmi celebrated her 60th birthday party last Saturday after cutting a bizarre birthday cake in the shape of a Mumbai slum, reports The Guardian.The Guardian article  headlined 'Is a slumdog birthday
PTI September 24, 2010 12:58 IST
PTI
Veteran Bollywood actress  Shabana Azmi celebrated her 60th birthday party last Saturday after cutting a bizarre birthday cake in the shape of a Mumbai slum, reports The Guardian.

The Guardian article  headlined 'Is a slumdog birthday cake not the real poverty porn?' is a scathing denouement on the attitude of Bollywood celebs towards the metro's slums.

The piece read: "India's Bollywood elite turned out in force for a 60th birthday bash. The birthday girl in question, Shabana Azmi, is almost as old as independent India, having been born just three years after the British Raj ended.  A friend disgusted by this cake sent me a picture. I was appalled and needed to write about it.

The half-eaten cake is a baked replica of what a slum looks like to India's large middle class and its rather small elite.



”A river seems to run through it in blue icing but a careful look reveals it is a nallah or a sewage-filled open drain -- the trademark of neighbourhoods where India's urban poor build their makeshift homes.
”A clothes line full of washing can also be seen among the remains of the cake.

”As I look at the picture of Shabana Azmi's birthday cake, I wonder about her husband's sense of humour.
”I wonder if the irony was lost on most of the Bollywood elite, who dutifully showed up and no doubt ate big chunks from the makeshift huts and open sewage drains.

”I wonder, if they are aware of India's latest poverty statistics. I am sure the cake, like the rest of the food on offer, was delicious.

”Some of these very same elites had been up in arms against what many activists called the 'poverty porn' of Danny Boyle's film, Slumdog Millionaire.

”The question is: Is eating Shabana Azmi's slumdog cake while dancing to Bollywood music at a rather posh and expensive party not a tasteless representation of 'poverty porn' yet again?"