"Slumdog" child star moves into new Mumbai home
By Shilpa Jamkhandikar
MUMBAI (Reuters) - A child star of the Oscar-winning movie "Slumdog Millionaire" moved into his new home in an upmarket Mumbai suburb Saturday, a far cry from his family's former dwelling -- a shanty by the railway tracks.
Azharuddin Ismail, 9, played the youngest Salim in British director Danny Boyle's rags-to-riches film about a slum dweller trying his luck on a TV gameshow.
His eyes bright and a big smile plastered on his face, Ismail showed off his new home to guests.
"I like it here, it is really nice. But I will miss my old friends back in Bandra. Maybe I will go and visit them once a while," a grinning Ismail told Reuters as he pranced around the house.
Ismail and his family moved into the 250 square foot (25 sq meter) ground floor flat, which is in a modern building complex, with electricity and running water. It is a short drive away from Juhu, a suburb home to some of India's most famous film stars.
The Jai Ho Trust, named after the film's award-winning track and set up by the producers, bought the $42,000 home on Ismail's behalf and will give it to him when he turns 18.
Ismail's earlier dwelling, a tarpaulin and sheet hut, was demolished by the civic authorities in May as it was illegal.
Pictures of Ismail and a child co-star picking through the debris of their old homes caused uproar in Mumbai, where more than half its 17-million population is homeless. Continued...