Letters to the editor
Indian actor Sridevi is no more
The sudden demise of Bollywood actress Sridevi has sent shock waves throughout the Indian film industry and her fans across the subcontinent. Bollywood celebrities, like Amitabh Bachchan, Rishi Kapoor, Kamal Haasan and Aamir Khan, have mourned and expressed their condolences.
Sridevi, 54, died late on Saturday night in Dubai, where she had gone to attend her nephew Mohit Marwah’s wedding. A versatile actor, Sridevi made her Bollywood debut in 1978 with Solwa Sawan. But it was only after five years with Jeetendra-starrer Himmatwala that she gained commercial success.
Her attractive eyes, scintillating screen presence and acting prowess soon made her one of the most sought-after actresses in the Hindi film industry. She was considered one of the very few Indian female superstars capable of huge box-office success without the support of a male hero. While her films like Mawaali (1983), Tohfa (1984), Mr India (1987) and Chandni (1989) kept her at the top in box office. Her other films like Sadma (1983), ChaalBaaz (1989), Lamhe (1991), and Gumrah (1993) earned her critical acclaim.
She went on to take a break for 15 years after starring in home production Judaai co-starring brother-in-law Anil Kapoor and Urmila Matondkar. It was director Gauri Shinde’s English Vinglish in 2012 that marked Sridevi’s comeback.
Her nuanced performance as a middle-class woman, learning to speak English to feel accepted by her family, won her praise, and the film was also a commercial success. She was last seen in the 2017 film MOM. Her daughter Janhvi is set to make her Bollywood debut this year. Starting her career as a child star, Sridevi worked in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada films before debuting in Hindi films.
The Indian government awarded her Padma Shri, the highest civilian honour, in 2013.
Dr Shiben Krishen Raina
New Muscat airport a landmark achievement
I recently got the chance to participate in the trials of the Muscat International Airport conducted by the Oman Airports Management Company and it was an awesome experience. I spent over five hours at the state-of-the-art facility. As a passenger departing from Muscat, I had the opportunity to go through check-in, immigration and customs formalities at the new facility.
The staff was very cooperative and supporting till the end of each process. For the sultanate, the new airport will be a landmark. Whoever using the facility will certainly remember it for life. The embedded facilities within the new airport should be considered a sign of prosperity the country has achieved over the years under the wise leadership of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said.
The Omani and expatriate community must be proud of this great achievement. The newly built airport is a direct reflection of the sultanate’s achievements. While bringing the new facility in line with international standards, the officials ensure it has the traditional touch reflecting the sultanate’s rich past. Ideally, it resembles the country’s approach to peace and stability with a global perspective.
For thousands of passionate Omanis and expatriates who were a part of the trial run, their experience and feedback would certainly be helpful for the betterment of the operation of the facility in future. Meanwhile, we must appreciate the round-the-clock involvement of thousands of workers and their committed approach to make this dream a reality. Their tireless efforts over the past few years have helped in achieving the desired outcome.