THE news channels are screaming over the top saying that DEV ANAND, the Bollywood legend is no more. He breathed his last in London at an advanced age of 88. But what does that mean to me?
I’m mourning about the loss of my GUIDE, my JEWEL THIEF, my JOHNNY, my GAMBLER, my own PREM PUJARI taking away my SAPNE going away singing HARE RAMA HARE KRISHNA and reminding me that everyone is so dear to GOD, that he cannot be without them for long. He saw and heard GOD in GUIDE and I felt that he was a GOD man and he would be my way to him. I swayed to him when he sang “MAIN ZINDAGI KA SAATH NIBHAATA CHALAA GAYAA” and all those worries seemed such silly in the face of that acceptance of life.
Dev saab simplified his life by saying that his work was always his GOD and he would continue making films no matter what the society looked at him and branded him as a silly old man. OLD and DEV ANAND? These two words just don’t gel together. DEV SAAB was born young and he shall remain young forever. He remember that head shake and swagger modelled on the lines of Gregory Peck and introduced us to the word called style. Even now in certain pockets of our country, the one who dresses as stylishly is often branded as DEV ANAND. That is what DEV ANAND is, stylish and ubercool. And he was the HERO. When anyone calls anyone a HERO, he should be meaning DEV ANAND.
He was one of the golden trio of Bollywood which comprised Raj Kapoor and Dilip Kumar as the other two. Raj was the personification of the common man, while Dilip was the ultimate tragedy king exploring the pathos but Dev Anand was celebration. He celebrated life. His roles in CID, HUM DONO, KALA BAZAAR in the earlier times and many such films had captured that point of life and people came to his films to feel celebrated. His path was later followed by Shammi Kapoor and all those who wished to be heroes. He was a true hero. Even now, his rule of entertainment always rules.
He may have well passed his prime when I was born. But his was a charm which predates time and era. His was a personality which everyone connected with. He was a personifcation of the ubercool stuff which every male wanted to be. He created a space for himself in a world where space is rarely found to be occupied. His was a special place and there would be impostors to his place but none the rightful claimants. DEV ANAND is just a phenomenon of his times and the times which followed and which shall follow. DEV SAAB, your swagger and style will never go out of fashion.