Director David Dhawan can’t get over the fact that his dear friend is gone.
“Chintu(Rishi Kapoor) and I were much more than professional collaborators. Of course we did 5 films together…which other director has done five films with Chintu? But more than this, we were friends. Our families were friends. My elder son Rohit and Chintu’s son Ranbir are very close friends. My wife Laali and Chintu’s wife Neetu are close friends. We attend all the functions in each other’s families.”
David gets emotional as he recalls his times with Rishi. “I have been crying since morning when I heard the news of his going. I couldn’t believe it. And to nake it worse,we couldn’t attend his funeral. This is the worst punishment God could have given us. Aur kitni imtihaan lega Bhagwan hamara?”
Of the five films David has done with Rishi Kapoor he is the fondest of Bol Radha Bol. “That film was so much fun to shoot. Me, Chintu, Juhi Chawla, Kader Khan …we all had a riot shooting it.And the film was a superhit. The song Tu tu tutu tara was a chartbuster. The thing about Rishi was, he was a clean-hearted mooh-phat insaan. Jo dil mein woh zubaan pe. He was famous for his plainspeaking. But he had such a clean heart. I am going to miss him.It is sad when friends start going away.It reminds one of one’s own mortality.”
David remembers Rishi’s struggle with cancer. “He struggled so much. But he never allowed anyone to feel his pain. He came back from New York after treatment and all seemed well. But then this disease can strike you any time. We fear coronavirus so much when there so many other diseases on the prowl.”
David has started taking care of his own health. “It’s thanks to my sons Rohit and Varun who have made sure I eat and exercise properly. They are sometimes harsh with me. But I know it’s for my own good.”