Panaji: Actor Irrfan Khan’s wife, Sutapa Sikdar walked down the memory lane Friday. She emotionally remembered the times spent with the late Irrfan Khan star. Sutapa Sikdar said, though her husband passed away too soon, he lived a fulfilling life.
Irrfan is rated one of India’s finest and most versatile actors with acclaimed performances. His memorable films are Maqbool, The Namesake, Paan Singh Tomar and Hindi Medium. He died in Mumbai April 29, 2020 at the age of 54. The actor was diagnosed with neuroendocrine tumour in 2018. It is a rare form of cancer that attacks various parts of the body.
To pay tribute to his legacy, the 51st edition of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) screened Irrfan’s Paan Singh Tomar here. The screening was attended by Sutapa and son Babil. She said the 2012 film, about an award-winning athlete who is forced to rebel against the system, is an apt homage to Irrfan.
“IFFI couldn’t have chosen a better film. It talks about a race, an athlete. To quote Irrfan’s dialogue from the film, ‘you have to finish the race. Whether you lose or win. You have to touch the finish line’,” Sutapa said.
“Irrfan’s finish line came too soon. But he played well. We are proud of you Irrfan,” an emotional Sutapa said, as Babil hugged his mother.
Directed by Tigmanshu Dhulia, Paan Singh Tomar bagged two National Awards. One was for the ‘Best Film’ and the other for ‘Best Actor’, which went to Irrfan.
At the screening, Sutapa recalled attending the movie gala with Khan when both were students in New Delhi. She said the two would have ‘cutting chai’. They would then ‘drown in conversations about cinema’ after every film screening.
“That was the beginning. I remember Irrfan having dreams in his eyes. It’s a special moment. It’s an honour and privilege to be appreciated, given a tribute by the same institute – IFFI,” she added.
Sutapa said it was a ‘brave decision’ for her to step out. It was her first public appearance since Irrfan’s demise, but one that provided her a closure.
“This is the first time I’ve come out of home. I had to, because one needs closures also to walk ahead. IFFI is the closure for me. It’s like being there for what we have done 30 years ago as students. I am happy people are here even in today’s exceptional times. It feels nice that we are here together to celebrate a person,” added Sutapa.