For Pune, the year 2013 has been one of excitement, rejoicement, mourning and so much more. Let’s look at 10 events that impacted the city most…
1. Dabholkar’s Assassination
Narendra Dabholkar, an activist who relentlessly ran a campaign against superstition and black magic practices since the 80s, was shot to death by two bike-borne goons. He had proposed an ordinance to the State Government to evade black magic and superstition, for which some antagonists called him ‘anti-Hindu’. Despite in-depth investigations, the police have failed to find the culprits behind the assassination that shocked and enraged the city.
2. German Bakery Reopens
German Bakery, known for its light, healthy snacks and delicious baked goods, finally reopened on the eve of a Saturday in May. The familiar landmark was snuffed out by a terror blast on February 13th 2010, killing 17 and injuring over 60 people. The bakery’s reopening was much awaited by the locals and regular visitors.
3. The LBT protests
The enforcement of a new transportation tax, the Local Body Tax, brought hundreds of thousands of traders on the streets, protesting against the levied burden. The traders finally called off their stir after the State Government proposed to come up with a mutually beneficial solution.
4. ‘Goldman of Pimpri’ featured in the Guinness Book of World Records
A Bhosari-based millionaire, Datta Phuge is a gold lover to say the least. His tailor-made, gold shirt has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s most expensive shirt. Made from 3.5 kg of 22-carat solid gold, it is worth Rs. 1.2 crore. It also consisted of 6 Swarovski crystals for buttons.
5. No more Pune Warriors in the IPL
With no opportunity for us to bid adios to Pune Warriors, BCCI unanimously determined to terminate the team from the Indian Premier League. The decision was made following the non-payment of the franchisee fee by Sahara Group despite several written warnings. In 2014, the grounds will be devoid of Punekars’ cheers for their warriors. Sad IPL!!
6. Google Doodle won by a Pune girl
A 15-year old Puneri mulgi, Gayatri Kethraman, won the Google4Doodle 2013 contest themed ‘Celebrating Indian Women’. Gayatri titled her doodle ‘Sky’s the limit for Indian women’. Using each letter of Google, it shows that an Indian woman is graceful, elegant, adept at balancing work and home, a go-getter, a personification of motherhood and courageous. The competition featured over 1.5 lakh participants from all over the country. Google cheered her work by displaying the art on its home page on November 14th.
7. Mohor Pune Biennale
Pune has always taken the initiative to tout local talent. The Pune Biennale event was arranged to promote and showcase creative talents of Punekars from various fields of art, design and architecture. It was a ten-day event that took place in January with the theme ‘Celebrating Hills of Pune’.
8. Gandhi’s Foldable Chakra made in Yerwada Jail sold at an auction in the UK
One of Mahatma Gandhi’s valuable possessions, ‘The Yerwada Chakra’, went on auction in the UK, which was hammered for a whopping 110,000 pounds. During the ‘Quit India’ movement, Gandhiji devised this portable chakra when he was imprisoned for 8 months in the Yerwada Jail. The Mullock’s Auction House said that the spinning wheel was sold off to an anonymous phone bidder in Shropshire, England.
9. Three coveted awards for Punekars at the 60th National Award Ceremony
Three Punekars, Arati Ankalikar, Vikram Gokhale and Arpan Gaglani won National Awards at the prestigious 60th National Awards ceremony held in New Delhi this year. Arati Ankalikar was presented the award for best playback singing in Marathi film ‘Samhita’. Vikram Gokhale won the award for Best Actor for ‘Anumati‘. ‘Delhi Safari’, with Arpan Gaglani as its creative director, won the award for best animated feature film. Pune is proud!
10. Pune International Literary Festival
For the first time ever and in an attempt to bring literature closer to Punekars, Pune turned host to an international literary festival for three days in the month of September. It was organised by two Pune-based authors; Manjiri Prabhu and Sonja Chandrachud. Over 50 established and up-an-coming authors participated in the fest, which put Pune on the literary map of the world.
German Bakery image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/fraboof
Google Doodle image: www.google.co.in
Shaniwar Wada Feature Image: Hemanshu Rukadikar
Article Contributors: Veethi Telang, Apeksha Bhagchandani, Sapna Sarfare and Vedvrat Shikarpur