Press Trust of India
December 14, 2012 14:48 IST
Bollywood's distinguished character
artist A K Hangal, who endeared himself to the audience by
playing the role of the lovable old man in films like
Sholay, Shaukeen and Namak Haram, died today following a
The 95-year-old actor, remembered for his role as Imam
Chacha in the blockbuster Sholay, passed away at 9 am at the
Asha Parekh Hospital in suburban Santacruz in Mumbai where he
was admitted on August 16 after fracturing his thigh bone.
A surgery was to take place, but doctors at the hospital
called it off as he had several complications including chest
problem, breathing and lung ailments.
Best known for his one-liner from blockbuster Sholay -
Itna sannaata kyun hai bhai (why so much silence is there),
Mr Hangal made his entry in Bollywood when he was in his 40s and
went on to act in over 200 films.
"This is really a sad thing...now I am left all alone.
I have no words to describe his loss," his son Vijay told PTI.
"He was a strong man...he has been a great support to
me," he said.
Avtaar Veenit Kishan Hangal was born in a Kashmiri
Pandit family in Sialkot (Pakistan) and came to the city of
dreams Mumbai - at the age of 21, with Rs 20 in his pocket.
He initially worked as a tailor and had customers like
the Nawab of Pataudi and Britishers and was paid Rs 500 per
Known for his roles in films like Namak Haram,
Sholay, Shaukeen, Aaina, Bawarchi and others, Hangal
played the role of father, uncle or friend to leading actors
like Rajesh Khanna, Jaya Bachchan, Sunny Deol and others.
He made an impressive mark as the old man who gets up and
joins the troupe in the song Ghanan Ghanan where he sang one
line Kale Megha Kale Megha Pani To Barsao in Aamir Khan
starrer movie Lagaan.
The actor, who was honoured with the Padma Bhushan for
his contribution to Hindi cinema in 2006, was in the news last
year for living a life in penury.
His son Vijay, a retired still cameraman in Bollywood,
appealed for help after failing to meet Mr Hangal's medical
expenses. Several Bollywood celebrities like the Bachchans,
producer-director Vipul Shah, and actors Mithun Chakraborty,
Aamir Khan and Salman Khan came forward to help him.
Recently, he returned to face the studio lights after
several years for TV series Madhubala.