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Actor-Writer-Director Neeraj Vora Passes Away!



Neera Vora, the man who made  us laugh  on screen and  off it too, is no more.  Vora   who came into his own as the writer of Ram Gopal Varma’s Rangeela and Daud and also made a big impact playin gcomic  roles in films like Akele Hum Akele Tum, DaudSatya and Welcome Back, brsodes directing Phir Hera Pheri passed away early morning on  Thursday, December 14.

 Producer Firoz  Nadiadwala who had been looking after the ailing Vora for more than  a year informed this writer of Vora’s demise, “He passed away at 4 am on Thursday. I’ve lost the battle  to save my brother and friend from death. His health had improved so  much. But it deteriorated suddenly on  Friday. He had  to be out into hospital. But it was no use. We lost him.”

For the past one year Firoze  had been looking after all the medical expenses  of comatose filmmaker Neeraj Vora who fell ill and was given up for almost-dead by the doctors until Firoz stepped in.

Since that fateful day Neeraj Vora occupied a special room in Firoze’s bungalow where  the ailing writer-director was attended by a fleet  of medical experts, nurses, dieticians and well-wishers.

 Reluctant to talk about his astonishingly noble deed Firoz says, “It was one  year on 19 October since  I got Neeraj to my home in Mumbai from AIIMSin Delhi where the doctors had declared he would be dead in  a few hours. Quite frankly, I don’t know what powers made me do what I did. I couldn’t leave  him to die. He had nobody to look after him. Neeraj did have a brother. But he was  financially incapable  of  shouldering the responsibility. I had known Neeraj for 12 years. We’ve worked together in several films and we’ve shared a close bonding. How could I leave  him  there to die?How would I’ve lived with myself if I had been so callous?”

Firoze still recalls that fateful  day when he decided to step in and save his friend’s life. “As I said the doctors at AIMS had given up on him.I don’t know what got into me. I immediately hired an air ambulance  to bring Neeraj from Delhi to Mumbai. I have to confess my heart was in my mouth. IfNeeraj had passed away during that journey  from Delhi to Mumbai , or even after landing I’d have been in serious legal and moral trouble.Luckily God was on my side. He willed that Neeraj live and I be the tool to save his life. I sincerely believe we are all instruments of God brought to earth  to do HIS will.”

 Neeraj was  slowly recovering  under Firoz’s care. “I had set aside a room in my house for him. That was his home  for  the past year.The room has pictures of his parents. His father , a classical  musician, used to play an instrument  called the Veena. We had that music playing in his room. We had  the Hanuman Chalisa recited for him…All that was familiar to Neeraj was there for him .Plus there were four attendants—two each for the day and night shifts—to look after him round the clock, a dieticianneuro-surgeons, a cook who lives closeby and cooks all the special food that Neeraj has to be fed through his stomach….Under all this care, Neeraj was slowly recovering. And now, he is  gone.”

Firoz feels all his efforts  to save  his friend has gone to waste. “I  lost Neeraj.  I  was so sure he would recover fully. But God willed otherwise. We are now giving a  proper send-off with pooja and rituals. The cremation is at the Santa Cruz cremation at4pm today.”

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