Celebrities who rang in 2019 in Dubai

Celebrities who rang in 2019 in Dubai. (Shutterstock)
Updated 01 January 2019

Celebrities who rang in 2019 in Dubai

DUBAI: Bollywood actress Jacqueline Fernandez partied in Dubai on New Year’s Eve, sharing pictures from the celebrations on her Instagram. “So blessed to ring in this 2019 with my famfam,” the Sri Lankan beauty wrote.

The actress, who was born and raised in Bahrain, is in the UAE on a four-day visit with her family. She visited the Harvey Nichols store in Mall of the Emirates on Dec. 30, inviting fans to meet her there and tagging the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) in her post.
Fernandez posted an image of herself and her family members with shopping bags, captioning it: “@dsfsocial you sure know how to spoil us!! Love from my famfam!!!”
She also shared a short clip of an impromptu dance performance at the hotel she was staying in – the Emerald Palace Kempinski Dubai on the Palm Jumeirah — writing: “This is saying goodbye to you 2018!!!! Love you so much for everything you taught us!! Will never forget you; time to dance ahead into the future!!”
Fernandez will be visiting the UAE again for a concert with actor Salman Khan on Mar. 15.
“Dabangg: The Tour — Reloaded,” which will be held at Dubai Festival City, also stars Katrina Kaif, Sonakshi Sinha, Prabhu Deva, Manish Paul, Daisy Shah, Guru Randhawa and others.
Meanwhile, former Irish model and businesswoman Pippa O’Connor and husband Brian Ormond were also in Dubai for New Year’s Eve. The TV presenter shared photos of her vacation with a series of snaps on Instagram.
“A different type of NYE for us… feeling so grateful to end such a memorable year here… with everyone I need by my side,” O’Connor wrote alongside photos of her New Year celebrations with her husband and two boys at Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort. Dressed in a blue sequinned dress, the Irish beauty seemed to revel in her family time.
Footballer Cristiano Ronaldo was also in Dubai for New Year’s Eve, witnessing its magnificent firework show with fiancée Georgina Rodriguez and son Cristiano Junior and posting the picture on his Instagram. Rodriquez also documented her stay for her 8.5 million Instagram followers, posting images of a boat trip the family took off the Dubai coast.
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Happy New Year!

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Ronaldo is in the UAE for the Globe Soccer Awards at Madinat Jumeirah on Thursday, where he has been nominated for the Best Player Award.
Another celebrity in the UAE for the holiday was English model Ferne McCann. The former reality TV star, who was holidaying with her daughter Sunday Sky in the Middle East, flaunted her washboard abs in a yellow bikini on the beach. She also posted images of her New Year’s Eve party from Dubai’s Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa on Instagram.
“So happy to be away this year to welcome in 2019. I have had a lovely year 2018 I will never ever forget. My baby girl turned 1 & I have so many special memories made,” she wrote.

Netflix Review: ‘Leila’ offers a frightening fictional glimpse into India under draconian rule

Netflix’s original six-episode series, “Leila,” is an unflinching look at a fictional futuristic India run under a draconian political, social and cultural structure. (Supplied)
Updated 19 June 2019

Netflix Review: ‘Leila’ offers a frightening fictional glimpse into India under draconian rule

CHENNAI: Netflix’s original six-episode series, “Leila,” is an unflinching look at a fictional futuristic India run under a draconian political, social and cultural structure.

Adapted from Prayaag Akbar’s novel of the same title, and directed by Deepa Mehta (known for bold films such as “Fire,” “Earth” and “Water”), Shanker Raman and Pawan Kumar, “Leila” is set in 2047, a century after the country had gained independence from the British Empire, and is a daring take on what India could become if authoritarianism and radical forces had their way.

India, in “Leila,” is called Aryavarta, a dictatorial state ruled by Joshi (Sanjay Suri) with the help of a ruthless police force, where painful segregation of people on the basis of religion, caste and economic status is routine. They are separated by formidably tall walls to ensure purity of race.

Children of mixed parentage are whisked away from parents, and women who marry outside their religion are sent to places resembling concentration camps, where they are reformed and re-educated.

One of them is Shalini (Huma Qureshi), whose marriage to Rizwan (Rahul Khanna) outside her community is branded a crime. Her little daughter, Leila, is taken away, and her husband murdered.

The series follows the distraught mother as she goes looking for the girl. Hurt and humiliated by a draconian administration which relies on thugs and a highly intrusive surveillance system to maintain order, Shalini befriends a state-appointed minder, Bhanu (Siddharth).

Penned by Urmi Juvekar, Suhani Kawar and Patrick Graham, the series is slightly different from the book, and runs like a thriller showing chases, brawls for water (“Bandit Queen” director Shekhar Kapur had once wanted to make a movie on water wars, but could not) and torturous living conditions in filthy slums.

Qureshi portrays flashes of brilliance as a deeply troubled woman who pines for her child, but her character is often roadblocked in her quest by an unfeeling regime with a zero-tolerance approach to dissent.

Order is enforced through inhuman forms of punishment, and at one point Shalini has to roll over plates of half-eaten food.

With Netflix outside the purview of sometimes rigid Indian censorship rules, Mehta and the other directors have been able to present most graphically a scenario that is well within the realms of possibility.