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By: Fuad Omar, IndiaFM
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Shilpa Mania continues in the UK after the starlet dazzled at this year's IIFA in Yorkshire and launched her perfume earlier this month. After the public it's the institutions which are after her as she was the main cultural ambassador chosen to launch the Mayor of London's 'India Now' initiative in central London yesterday.
Shilpa Shetty, draped in a studded pink outfit by Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla sparkled as she met the Mayor of London Ken Livingstone and officially opened the series of cultural events with a backdrop of a floating Taj Mahal which had onlookers gawping with delight. The miniature Mahal floated down the Thames River adding to many of London's most famous landmarks and Shilpa was asked how it was as compared to the real thing.
"It's fabulous and a much smaller version, but it's great to see London bringing such an initiative here that celebrates the ties between the two countries and promotes Indian culture to everyone."
"Every Indian here is an ambassador for their country and I'm just extremely lucky I was chosen to be the person to launch this. I'm proud of my country and through events like these I'm very happy people will celebrate our differences and contributions to the world. I thank the Mayor of London for inviting me and for India Now which will ensure London enjoys an Indian Summer."
Shilpa's reign in the UK continues as her perfume, S2, is marked for the month in August by the popular chain of chemists Superdrug and is being highlighted at all stores of The Perfume Shop across London. The recent success of Apne which entered the UK top ten at number 6, slipped only one place to number 7 in the second week and rests at number 12 this week has also helped with many seeing her first family film post Big Brother.
Today she is set to receive an Honorary Doctorate for Outstanding Contribution to Cultural Diversity from Leeds Metropolitan University which sees her return to the north of England closer to where she set IIFA ablaze a few weeks ago.
"I am sincerely grateful and humbled by the honour that such a prolific academic institution has so kindheartedly presented to me," she said. "Education and knowledge are the tools we pick up while we're growing and they last a lifetime. Leeds Metropolitan University gives those tools to thousands of its alumni and I'm proud to be here today to support the university and receive this honour of being one of its alumni."
"No filmmaker has been so bold as to give me the role of a doctor in any of my films but you managed to do what even the magic of cinema hasn't!"
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