Thursday, April 13, 2006

Rest in Dignity

Dr. Raj Kumar the Kannada Super Star passed away yesterday. Apart from what is talked in the media about him, I liked him as an actor and singer. Fed up of our bumbling in Kannada, our 4th Std. Kannada teacher told us to watch Kannada programmes on DD so that we could pick up the language easily. Kannada was my third language in school.

( I learnt Malayalam the traditional way, i.e. with a Vidyarambham that was done by an asaan in my Mom’s place. I wrote the letter aa in Malayalam on Rice. Nowadays I have heard that churches too have started Vidhyarambham in Kerala.)

Now I had the perfect excuse to watch TV and I watched quite a bit of Kananda movies those days. DD would show a lot of Raj Kumar movies. And I felt an instant liking for Raj Kumar. He was so comfortable in front of the camera that you felt like he was not acting. And the characters he played were very lifelike. Of course his movies were the feel good movies. He was also the only actor I have seen who treated his heroines like a gentleman on screen, No groping or any suggestive movements. He was the perfect Kannadiga, son, brother, lover and husband in his movies. Perhaps that is what appealed to the masses.

When Raj Kumar was kidnapped there was sheer revelry among the anti social elements and they went about looting shops and indulging in arson in apparent glee. It was evident from TV coverage that the arsonists were enjoying themselves.

Pity that anti social elements have take his death too as the perfect excuse to go on the rampage. These people have scant regard for the final moments of Raj Kumar and are using his death as an excuse to take to lawlessness. Somehow I think he deserved better. As I watched the ambulance carrying the thespians body stuck amidst the crowd I could not but help feel bad for him. I am sure all he would have wanted was to go home one last time in peace.

The media too is scared. Radio City has stopped all programmes and is only broadcasting Raj Kumar’s songs. Cable TV too has gone blank. There is a palpable fear in the city. The TV channels too are cashing in on the TRP bonanza. One Channel even showed a lady questioning Raj Kumar’s death. It was the most irresponsible piece of journalism. Such things just fuel the fire for opportunists and miscreants.

I still remember watching Mother Teresa’s funeral on TV. Millions of people lined up the route in silence and she made her final journey in dignity.

I hope the so-called fans of Raj Kumar will at least grant him that.


Mind Curry said...

so true..i mean it just brings us down as people when such incidents happen, irrespective of who does it.and that too when a man passes away due to cardiac arrest. absolutely senseless.

ofcourse, there is a large section of the media just waiting to cash in on any thing, and they do it best when its someone elses misery.

Immigrant in Canada said...

I too had to watch his movies to learn Kannada!! He was a remarkable actor. May his soul rest in peace

ramya said...

Came here from DP's blog.
Raj Kumar cultivated this crowd.....he deserved the retribution they gave him. Like they say in Hindi aastheen mein saamp paalna What goes around comes around.

Mark Pritchard said...

You wrote:
> He was also the only actor I have seen who treated his
> heroines like a gentleman on screen, No groping or any
> suggestive movements.

Are you saying that Indian actors, except for Rajkumar, almost always grope their female co-stars and act lasciviously?

Perhaps they do -- I have no idea -- but it seems like an odd way to act.

Dewaker Basnet said...

the electronic media was stinkingly cliched on the day. maybe they should have a fair contemplation on how to report breaking news and not say whatever they feel like saying..
the farewell was ne of humilation for the entire state..shame..

the doyen would be grieving up there..

Anonymous said...

did you ACTUALLY just compare rajkumar to mother teresa??? Silverine, get a life, my dear.
this piece of shit man died and it's bad enough that there are enough dumb ppl to stop a city from functioning but it's worse when ppl like you actually are REALLY mourning his death and insulting ppl like Mother Teresa in the process.

Jagan said...

The situation cud b similar if some cine actor died in Tamil Nadu or in andhra ..these stars have larger than life image ..Did you know tht when MGR died in TN, 31 ppl committed suicide ?

Mind Curry said...

@ anonymous - i guess what mother teresa was for some, is similar to what rajkumar was for others. i dont think anyone said both those individuals were same.

silverine said...

@mindcurry: thanks:)
@Anon: What I meant was that the people who loved Mother Teresa gave her a dignified farewell, unlike the so called fans of RK who made his last moments so humiliating.

silverine said...

@Jagan; I think MGR's funeral was not violent. the people who committed suicide were his fans unlike the people who took advantage of RK's death to loot and plunder.

Sachin R K said...

I remember the day he died. I had booked a bus ticket to Kerala. I started from my place around 7pm ( after confirming there was no trouble on TV ). About 2 kms from Majestic the BMTC bus I was travelling in was stopped and its windscreens smashed. I was cowering on the floor with the other passengers cursing the moment I had decided to make the trip. Luckily the police came and we got out of the bus with our bags and bodies intact. And then it was a long hike to Majestic ( lots of people walking with bags, trapped like me ) reminding me of the scenes of refugee exodus from Gandhi. On every junction , people had gathered making bonfires from burning tyres and shouting Kannada slogans. It was terrifying.

And it was all such a tragedy because from what I have read in newspapers, Raj Kumar was one of the gentlest persons around. May his soul Rest In Peace.