‘Slumdogs’ no more

Their homes in the slums of Mumbai were demolished recently, but things are looking up for Rubina Ali Frieda_pinto and Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail, two of Slumdog Millionaire's child stars.

The filmmakers have agreed to raise the amount of money they will spend on new apartments for each family from $30,000 to $50,000, a Jai Ho trustee and Rubina's father, Rafiq Qureshi, both told The Associated Press on Saturday.

Family members had worried that $30,000 would not be enough to secure decent housing in Mumbai's pricey real estate market.

In addition, the filmmakers have agreed to give each family a stipend of $130 a month and a lump sum of $3,000 a year to support the children while they are in school, the trustee and Qureshi said. [Link]

They also sent $130 stipends to Frieda Pinto and Dev Patel. Freida used the money to get her nails done. Well, not all of it. She did let Dev keep 10 bucks.

If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through Amazon.com and McNallyRobinson.com You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.

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