Death of a close acquaintance robs us of objectivity. Grief keeps pouring out of welled-up eyes and chokes our breaths. Attendant rituals and surrounding mourners give rise to claustrophobia. It is then that numbness sets in. Profound gloom envelops everything. Days become long and dark, nights darker and endless. Pain might heal, loss always haunts. Death brings finality to the stories of close relations. They never get replaced. A man drowning in sorrow is far too concerned with keeping his head above water to gauge the height of waves or colour of the sky.
Reflection and meditation upon death are possible only from a distance. A death that touches, singes but does not cause deep burns is quite revealing. A departure of someone dear that hurts unbearably, but does not affect our daily life is instruction in spirituality. Departures that do so end-up being lessons in life. Death of an actor we adore, or a sportsperson we admire or a public figure we follow are cases in the point. Given the absence of social or religious obligations and any kind of personal touch, we remain detached enough to meditate upon the meaning and weight of their physical deaths.
Irrfan has passed, but Haasil’s Ranavijay Singh shall always remain with us, among us, a couple of clicks on the laptop away in the age of Youtube. I must have watched Haasil fifteen times, remember every single dialogue and scene in the film and sometimes even imagine myself sitting across and conversing with Ranavijay Bhai. He is as alive for me today, as he was yesterday and shall always be. There would not be any new offerings, maybe he had another Paan Singh Tomar, or the Lunchbox or Piku in him. We would not be worse for those unmade films because they shall never exist in reality or in our consciousness. That loss is notional. Our loss is notional. The last few films were mundane fares – Hindi Medium, Blackmail, Jazbaa, English Medium. Irrfan shall still remain a Baaghi in Chambal, Macbeth in Maqbool and a Roohdar(ghost) in Haider. His eyes shall keep probing us from behind the silver screen as intensely as they used to, just that we would not be able to field live questions.
Let us leave the evaluation of his filmography for critics, and an analysis of his life and his struggle and his personality to film historians. Lists of his work shall be published by magazines, websites and newspaper obituaries. Comparisons of his own performances and with other actors shall keep his fanboys occupied forever.Settlement of bills and provision to his family shall be taken care of by insurance companies and estate managers. A re-viewing of Haasil or the Warrior shall be my tribute to the actor I admire more than any other.His roles are all he means to me.
In death, it no longer matters if he came from Tonk or Tatanagar, was or wasn’t a pucca Mussalman, nor even if he succumbed to neuroendocrinal cancer or colon infection or something else altogether. The fight he put up does not matter. Neither do his zest for life and eagerness to carry on. Life had dealt him lemons, he said. He conceded there was no choice but to squeeze them into lemonades. Death did not surprize him in the end. The noose got tightened gradually and last bits of life were claimed. He accepted the fault in his stars. Now there is no longer any pain, no disease, no more bad news. Irrfan died a hero, and his legend shall grow with time.
Death won’t be blamed for the final act of release. This is the fate that awaits us all bar none.
Nothing matters in the end.
Nothing else matters.
Except that I shall never quite figure out how he managed with his accent to dupe Allahabadis as well as Rajasthanis into believing that he hailed from Allahabad, which he actually did not!
**The following dialogues and songs of Irrfan shall always remain with us –
1.The ROG dialogue-
2.The ROG song- Maine Dil Se Kaha
#Irrfan #death #Haasil #rog #mainedilsekaha