Dancing Shoes and Gadbad

Dancing shoes from Dharavi, Chocolate Dad from Mangaluru and organic jaggery fresh from the farms of Sangli are all part of our newsletter this week

Urvashi Dev Rawal
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jaggery being made from sugarcane soil aroma

Making organic jaggery on the farm

Dear Reader,

The popularity of Bollywood dance is immense. From children to youngsters and old men and women, everyone shakes a leg to upbeat songs from Hindi films at parties and weddings. Bollywood has also gained popularity abroad with musicians in the West incorporating Indian dance moves.

But did you know that special shoes required for dancing were not available in India and had to be imported until 2007 when Jameel Shah came along?

Jameel is the first shoe person to customise handcrafted dance shoes that have been worn by stars from Madhuri Dixit, Katrina Kaif and Kajol to Aamir Khan and Hrithik Roshan, writes my colleague Partho.

Jameel, from a poor family in Darbhanga, Bihar, moved to Mumbai where his mentor Sandip Soparrkar asked him to make dancing shoes similar to the ones that were imported from England. After toiling for many months, Jameel came up with a satisfactory pair.

Since then, he is the go-to person for dancing shoes with celebrities lining up to get a pair from him. Working from his 10ft X 10ft unit in Dharavi, he literally makes Bollywood groove in his shoes. Do read up on his story.

My colleague Riya writes about husband-wife Rennis Joseph and Immaculate Mary who have developed a culturally relevant and affordable English and Life Skills curriculum for underprivileged students. 

The couple began work from Banapuram, a village in Khammam district of Telangana where they developed their model. Their firm Ignis Careers collaborates with private and government schools and has helped over 350,000 students and trained more than 11,000 teachers across 800 schools. By promoting learning instead of rote memorization, Ignis is giving a better future to lakhs of children.

While working as an engineer, Sumit Kinikar had to frequently travel and developed Irritable Bowel Syndrome. He had to quit his job and returned home to Bhilawadi village of Maharashtra’s Sangli district in 2018.

Sumit realised that the food grown using chemicals had contributed largely to his health condition. So, instead of returning to the corporate world, Sumit took up organic farming, writes my colleague, Rashmi.

Sumit’s family owns 4 acres of land where he now cultivates sugarcane along with peanuts on about two acres of farmland and grows other crops like turmeric, banana, papaya, and peanuts. Sumit processes the sugarcane to make organic jaggery, chikki and millet-jaggery laddus. His income from sugarcane farming is Rs3.6 lakh per acre. How? Read on to know.

With micro-cap stocks getting popular, Karan has listed five micro-cap stocks that have the potential to attract interest from mutual fund investors which could lead to a rise in their stock prices.

In our Sunday story, read about India’s ice cream capital, Mangaluru and its unique ice creams including ‘Gadbad’, ‘Dilkhush’, 'Chocolate Dad' and ‘Panaki’, which are loved equally by Indians and foreigners.

Have a tasty read!





From labourer to celebrity shoemaker, Bihar man makes Bollywood stars dance to his shoes


This couple’s innovative English & life skills training provides upward mobility to underprivileged students


How this Maharashtra engineer-farmer earns Rs 3.6 lakh per acre through organic sugarcane farming