I was never a Dev Anand fan. But then I was born in the wrong decade. The decade that saw Hare Rama Hare Krishna, and I am told my favourite song as a toddler was Kanchi Re Kanchi guaranteed to get me smiling and clapping happily no matter what I was tantrumming about. As I grew I saw his black and white movies and failed to recognise his rakish charm. I was after all a Shammi Kapoor fan, the slight tilted beret wearing figure didn’t cut a swathe through my heart. But the songs. The songs he got to sing on screen. They were something else. And I will remember him by those songs.
Abhi Na Jao Chod Kar
Din Dhal jaye
Tere Mere Sapne from Guide
Dil Ka Bhawar
Wahan Kaun Hai tera Musafir
And am sure many many I can’t remember right now.
And for the token Dev Anand memory.
A party at a friend’s home. M F Husain had invited Dev Anand. The house was on the seventh floor of the building, and as luck would have it, the lifts had both decided to die at the very moment. Dev saab, reached, was informed by the watchmen that the lifts weren’t functioning. A modern day star would turn around and go right back, given that he didn’t really know the hosts. But Devsaab bounded right up the stairs and reached without gasping for breath. How do I know? Because I was huffing and puffing behind right behind him. And I all of a college student at the time.
RIP Dev Anand. You will be missed. For your never say die attitude. You were truly the Peter Pan of Hindi cinema.