December 18th – 7000 participants, December 25th – 25000, January 8th– 30000??
Like the proverbial snowball that grows and grows as it rolls along, “Malad Masti” in just its 3rd week is gaining immense popularity, drawing large crowds, and spreading the mantra of fit and healthy living.
The event saw the presence of Sakshi Tanwar, Shakti Arora, Neha Saxena, Shabab Sabri, Meet Bros, writer Kiran Manral.
Aslam Sheikh MLA, who envisioned the “Malad Masti” concept, says, “In this internet age our citizens are well educated, well-informed, and their expectations are accordingly high. Malad Masti met their inherent desire to engage in fitness and cultural activities, in an enjoyable, safe, outdoor setting. Other free street events focus on sports and fitness alone, Malad Masti gives opportunity to people to engage in performing arts and entertainment also.”
Noella, General Secretary of the Vision Charity Foundation, co-organiser of “Malad Masti”remembers that in Aslam Sheikh’s MLA’s two successive terms as MLA he witnessed the changing lifestyles and aspirations of suburban Malad, and he came up with the idea of an event that matches the same”.
According Mr. Rajagopal, founder of the ALM it took almost a year for Aslam Sheikh, Vision, and the ALM to chalk out the entire concept, take regulatory permissions, rope in support from the BMC, Traffic Police Department, Local Police Station, etc. And all this planning and work resulted in what you see as “Malad Masti” today.
For the 3rd time in 4 weeks, the 3 km stretch of well-maintained concrete roads will freed from vehicular traffic and opened up for not just local residents but also to many who come from faraway locations like Vasai, and Dadar. Each of the Sundays has a different theme and scheme, and on January 8th participants witnessed“Malad Masti” in its New Year avatar, in a Pink and Grey colour scheme
A look at the activities map revealed 5 zones on either side a centre-stage. Each zone is divided into two sides East and West in typical Mumbai fashion. As many as 50 activity stations including Yoga, Zumba, Rock Climbing, Creative arts, etc.simultaneously engage crowds of around 5000.
In the words of Mr. Sheikh, “With the New Year theme, on centre-stage of Malad Masti was singing performance from some of the youth icons like Shabab Sabri, and Music Directors Meet Bros, demonstration of Capoeira, a Brazilian Martial Arts form. To spice up the scene, we had visits from the mainstream Bollywood fraternity who shared their fitness regimen and inspire the crowd”.
It is not all fun and frolic though. There is intense planning, promotions, and organising activities going on round the clock to stage the biggest event that has hit the Malad suburbs. Event Managers Mashra Enterprises have rallied in volunteers from all the building in the locality and made expert groups to handle the crowds, and distribute the activities into the zones. Mindspace residential societies are home to highly educated sections of the society and it is as if they were all waiting for an opportunity to render service for a great cause that will improve social and sporting activity in the region.
Undeterred by the fanfare associated with such a massive event, the ALM remains committed to their original mottos. Mr. Shazad Rustomjee, Chairman ALM, says, “We have been active in protecting our mangroves, and in tree plantation.Through our annual tree plantation initiative we have planted more than 10000 trees in this small area of 3 sq.km. We have a 6 acre Forest Garden developed by Mr. Aslam Shaikh, and almost 25 acres of total garden space in the entire Mindspace belt. This Sunday we will be motivating the 30000 participants to join hands with us in making the Mindspace area the greenest belt in Mumbai.
Principal Event partners were Modispaces Real Estate & People’s Gym along with other prominent retail icons like Shoppers’ Stop, Hypercity, Inorbit and Infiniti Retail. Puneet Khanna, and Subha Baranwal, responsible for ground level management, confirms, “We are overwhelmed by the response and the goodwill generated by Malad Masti. It has been so successful that residential organisations from Kandivali, Santacruz, and Kalyan are now inviting us to help them set up similar events in their localities”
With word spreading about the event far and wide across social media and news media, we won’t be surprised if the event is renamed in the future as Mumbai Masti. But for now, suffice to say, Malad Masti has arrived! And it’s here to stay.
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2014 The Global Indian New Network (TGINN)