It was late in the morning when my Whatsapp beeped with a message which knocked a cold thud in the heart, ’45 year actor Inder Kumar is no more. He suffered an heart attack at his residence in Four Bungalows, Andheri, Mumbai at around 2 am today. He worked in more than 20 films, also few with Salman Khan – Wanted, Tumko Na Bhool Paayenge and many others. These days he was shooting for his next film Phati Paid Hai Yaar.’ (sic)
The news business in today’s time is all about speed. Instead of being humane and deliberating on the death, the immediate reaction is to flash the news. Once the need subsides, consciousness peeps in churning varied emotions of sadness, hollowness and futility of life.
Inder Kumar, I first came across the name when one of my cousin sisters was working in a movie with him, long time back, titled Ek Aur Amar Prem. Of course the flick hit the abyss of oblivion, however, the connect etched a forever memory in my mind.
Later, as fate would have it, I entered the field of entertainment journalism and we got in touch, eventually becoming Facebook friends, liking each other’s picture upload and so on so forth…
His death came as a shocker, as to many of his friends and well wishers. The news evoked confusing multiple emotions in me. I have always found it very baffling to express condolences… what to say at the time of grief, so have always chosen to withdraw, cut the noise and let the moment gnaw into your senses, experiencing the puniness of existence in an otherwise bloated judgemental perceptional world, where everyone is a someone, yet no one.
The harrowing scenes and media madness around Pratyusha Banerjee’s untimely demise also found a new wave of recollect. The dance of death has always been the favourite newsbeat of many.
Inder Kumar’s life had its share of bumpy rides, like everyone else’s. Nothing new about it. However, he got what he always wanted after he breathed his last…nationwide popularity, thus becoming another artist to enter the list of ‘posthumous’.
Posthumous, as per Oxford dictionary is ‘occurring, awarded, or appearing after the death of the originator’ and is indeed the most harrowing experience for any artist. One should work hard and taste fame, success in lifetime, though difficult, yet wishful.
Inder’s death gave him popularity and media (mainstream and web) weaved stories one after another. Some sordid (with clickbaity senseless headlines), some dignified…sad but true.
However, if we flip the coin, one may put the argument forward that it’s not necessary that all artists hit Khan-like stardom. Collectively, everyone is contributing to make the performing arts space vibrating and entertaining. To quote a line, “Har shayar mashhoor ho jaye toh shayri ka maza chala jaye”.
The key is to enjoy the craft and live the moment. Everyone, in his or her capacity is popular and successful.
Yet, let the word posthumous not be part of any artist’s life, let success kiss everyone’s forehead in lifetime. And on death, oh dear media brethren, let’s be civil and cordial.
RIP Inder… here’s sending strength to his family.