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Subhash K Jha’s Open letter To Sridevi



Dear Srideviji

You are gone. There,  I said it. We are in a  state of disbelief. As one of your most ardent filmmaker friends said to me, “I want  to wake up to find out that this was  just a dream, a bad dream.”

But no. It is true. You are  gone , leaving a behind a legacy that is  hard to match. We will continue  to discuss your cinema  in  the weeks months and years to come. But what a  shameful send-off a section of the media gave  you!  Salacious headlines, sleazy photo-fudge,bath tubs  with a body and  goblets filled with blood…Your death was reduced to  pulp fiction by the frenzied tv channels.

I feel sorry for the absence  of dignity at the time of your final farewell. Photographers were jostling and pushing each other for images  of  actors and film stars who attended the dear departed actors farewell rituals.What I want to ask the immaculately dressed star guests at the Kapoors’ home is ,when they  know they will strip the occasion of solemnity shoouldn’t they be more discreet about their public appearances and not make their grand appearance  through the front gates in their easily identifiable cars?

 You  want  privacy. But you show up at venues  of  private  grieving in  long cars  and dark glasses ensuring the  cameras  capture the  goodwill gesture (of showing  up for  the death of one of  the entertainment world’s enduring legends).

 Nope.  It’s not just the paparazzi that  lacks discretion and sensitivity. The day you died was also the day Shahid Kapoor celebrated his birthday. Yes ‘celebrated’. That’s what his  PR team put out  a  day after death of  Sridevi. That Shahid was celebrating his birthday  outside Mumbai with his  wife daughter and  family.God bless the happy souls.

 The depths of insensitivity  within the film fraternity is daunting. Sure, the Holi bashes have been cancelled in deference to your going away. But how many actors actually feel and communicate  the enormity  of  the loss? Madhuri Dixit who was wrongly and irrationally seen as  your rival tweeted on  Twitter about  the death of a legend, blah blah ,got into her white  clothes and dark glasses(stars always wear dark glasses at solemn occasions to create the impression of swollen crying eyes in the public’s mind) and waltzed into your prayer meeting.

 Where  is  the grief in the industry? There is  disbelief, yes. But no real grief. A prominent filmmaker was saw you as the only choice for his  next film is already scouting  for a  replacement. Juhi Chawla may be the actress to occupy the newly vacated seat. No one will object. The dead don’t demand justice.  Only the right to rest in peace.

So go easy into the night, my dear Diva. And may you live on  in your daughter Jhanvi’s screen presence.

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