Chintu is alive in our hearts: Friends remember Rishi Kapoor on his first death anniversary
It may have been a year since his passing, but for Rishi Kapoor’s friends, the actor is not really gone. The khullam khulla attitude towards life, great acting chops and fierce friendships is Kapoor’s legacy is going to be according to his long time friends Rakesh Roshan, Shakti Kapoor, Prem Chopra and Padmini Kolhapure. On his death anniversary, they take a trip down memory lane as well as share how their life has been in the past one year without their dear friend.
The only thing I am missing is that I can see him everywhere, I can feel him everywhere but I cannot converse with him. We used to talk on phone an hour every day on every possible issue. He used to talk in an uncouth manner, we used to understand each other so well. He was a very frank person, if he didn’t like anything he would tell you on the face and if he liked something he would appreciate. That is exactly what my nature is too. That is why we got along so well. What clicked between us, I don’t know still. I will never know. Since Khel Khle Mein (1975) we clicked and since then we were friends. The good thing is that our wives, Neetu and Pinky, are also good friends, so that cemented the bond. When Jeetendra and Rishi were on a high I was not doing well as an actor but I never asked them to get me a role. I wasn’t friends with him because he was a star. And when I became a director and became known, they never told me why didn’t you take me in your film. Koi lena dena nahi tha kissi cheez ka. That void is always going to remain. We have travelled together so much with our family. I hope that Ranbir (Kapoor) and Hrithik (Roshan) become as close friends as we were or at least they come in a movie together.
I still can’t believe that it has been a year. Our birthdays are just a day apart. I am September 3 and he was September 4. I used to always tell him that bada bhaiyya bola kar mujhe ek din bada hoon tujhse. It is unbelievable for me even today ki who chala gaya. He was just too frank and that is something that I miss not seeing. We got along like a house on fire. We had lot of similarities. We celebrated our birthdays together when I was an upcoming actor and he knew I couldn’t afford big parties. He was there for me even in the initial phase of my struggle days. We both were fond of good alcohol and I miss our drinking sessions, too. We never fought till date. He had a lovely sense of humour. Very few people can make me laugh but he always did. Our families are close so that helped in building that bond further.
Rishi was my nephew, as I am married to his mother’s younger sister but we were more like friends than relatives. We did so many films together and in fact, his first film (Bobby, 1973) as a leading man was with me , and his last film Patel Ki Punjabi Shaadi (2017) as a central character actor was also with me. I really miss him a lot. He was a wonderful fellow, a great company to be with as he had a great sense of humour. What I feel bad is the fact that he was on top of his career and he had so much more to give as an actor. I miss his attitude, seeing him being so open with his opinions which sometimes used to annoy people but he didn’t care. I miss seeing him and his great performances onscreen. He is always going to be with me in spirit always. He will live on in the hearts of his friends and admirers.
Some people remain alive in your life forever even if they are gone. Chintu is one such person. For me, he still exists. He was such a personality that he had an overpowering impact on you. He created such an impact on me. When Raj (Kapoor) uncle passed away, it took me very long to process that. Even for Chintu, it is too soon to even come to terms with the fact that he is no more. When that thought comes to me, I just miss a heartbeat and have a sinking feeling. But he so strongly lives within. Some people are such strong influence of you that they will always be a part of your life. His charm and personality both on screen and off screen is what I miss the most of him. Whether you met him at a social event or a party, he always made his presence felt. So is it very difficult to understand that it has been a year of him not being around.