Bollywood skips AK Hangal’s prayer meeting

Veteran actor AK Hangal’s funeral saw a very little attendance of Bollywood fraternities and so at his remembrance meeting. None of the prominent personalities from film industry came to his remembrance meeting except few fraternities like Shabana Azmi, Javed Akhtar, Kabir Bedi, Ila Arun, Anupam Kher, Raj Zutshi, Pawan Malhotra and few others.

AK Hangal passed away on Sunday morning at Asha Parekh hospital. He was 98. He was survived by his son Vijay. His son looked after him in his old days as his wife Manorama left the world few years back. His last rites were performed yesterday and condolence meet was held this evening by the Indian People's Theatre Association (IPTA) at Prithvi Theatre.

Actors present at the condolence meeting shared their fond memories of AK Hangal. "I first saw him on the sets of 'Bawarchi' film and I was impressed by his acting. He was very particular about his work...his role," noted writer-lyricist Javed Akhtar said.

Shabana Azmi said, "He was very enthusiastic about his work. He was a very dedicated actor. We hope to see more people like him around us."

"I remember when he was to undergo an operation he asked me if he will be alive or he will die...I did not have any answer to that. It was when he was in ICU I wrote a poem for him," emotionally perturbed Vijay said.

Actor Kabir Bedi regret that he could not meet him before his demise. "He was not keeping well and I never got an opportunity to see him once and I feel sorry about this. I feel people will live for ever...I feel sorry as I couldn't see him," he said.

When he came to Mumbai, Hangal was actively involved with IPTA along with other veterans like Balraj Sahni and Kaifi Azmi.

"He led a very limited and a simple life. But he was very stylised and dressed well. I was associated with him for a long time. I learned so much from him...from acting to characterisation. He used to go to remote places to look for actors," Anjan Srivastav said.

"During the time when he was not well, IPTA was in regular touch with him. It was only in the last one year that the government started to help," he said.