A. K. Hangal

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A. K. Hangal
A K Hangal at 14th Hira Manik Awards.jpg
A. K. Hangal in 2011
Born Avtar Kishan Hangal
(1914-02-01)1 February 1914[1]
Sialkot, Punjab, British India
Died 26 August 2012(2012-08-26) (aged 98)
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Cause of death
Respiratory disease
Other names Padmabhushan Avtar Krishna Hangal
Occupation Actor
Years active 1929–1947 (freedom fighter), 1936–1965 (theater actor), 1965–2005 (film career), 1980–2012 (television career)
Notable work(s) Ram Shastri in Aaina
Inder Sen in Shaukeen
Imaam Sa'ab in Sholay
Bipinlal Pandey in Namak Haraam
Brinda Kaka in Aandhi
Children Vijay (Retired Bollywood photographer)

Avtar Kishan Hangal (1 February 1914 – 26 August 2012),[2] popularly known as A. K. Hangal, was an Indian freedom fighter[3] from 1929–1947 and also stage actor from 1936–1965 and later became a character actor in Hindi language films from 1966–2005.[4][5] His most notable roles are as Ram Shastri in Aaina (1977), as the Inder Sen in Shaukeen, as Bipinlal Pandey in Namak Haraam, as Imaam Sa'ab in Sholay, as Anokhelal in Manzil and the antagonist in Prem Bandhan and the 16 films he did with Rajesh Khanna.[6] He has acted in around 225 Hindi films in a career spanning from 1966 to 2005.[7]

Early life[edit]

Born into a Kashmiri Pandit family, he spent his childhood and youth in Peshawar, where he had performed in theatre for some major roles.His family home was inside Reti Gate as mentioned in his memoirs. His father's name was Pandit Hari Kishan Hangal.[8] However, his primary occupation for the early part of his life was that of a tailor.[9] He was an active participant in the Indian freedom struggle from 1929–1947. He joined Shree Sangeet Priya Mandal, a theatre group in Peshawar in 1936 and continued to act in many plays in pre Partition Pakistan till 1946.[10] Following his father's retirement, the family moved from Peshawar to Karachi. He moved to Bombay after the Partition of India in 1949 after 3 years in prison in Pakistan. He was involved with the theatre group IPTA along with Balraj Sahni and Kaifi Azmi, both of whom had Marxist leanings. He was jailed because he was a communist[5] in Karachi for two years from 1947–1949 and after his release came to India and settled in Mumbai.[11] He later acted in many plays in theatres in India from 1949–1965.

Hindi cinema career[edit]

He started his Hindi film career at the age of 50 with Basu Bhattacharya's Teesri Kasam in 1966 and Shagird, and went on to play as the man of principles playing the on-screen father or uncle of the leading men/women in the films in the 70's 80's 90's or sometimes the quintessential meek and oppressed old man. His pivotal roles in the films like Chetan Anand's Heer Raanjha (1970),Namak Haraam, Shaukeen (1981), Sholay, Aaina (1977), Avtaar, Arjun, Aandhi, Tapasya, Kora Kagaz, Bawarchi, Chhupa Rustam, Chitchor, Balika Badhu, Guddi, Naram Garam are considered to be among his best. He, as a character actor was part of 16 films with Rajesh Khanna as the lead hero like Aap Ki Kasam, Amar Deep, Naukri, Prem Bandhan, Thodisi Bewafaii, Phir Wohi Raat, Kudrat, Aaj Ka M.L.A. Ram Avtar, Bewafai till Sautela Bhai in 1996.[6] His best performances in his later years was in Shararat (2002) his character roles in Tere Mere Sapne (1997) and Lagaan.In movies he has played a very large number of character roles, mostly positive, with rare exceptions where his negetive roles became famous like in Manzil and Prem Bandhan . According to film expert Rajesh Subramanian, the producer Debika Mitra had signed Madan Puri for Inder Sen's role but a friend advised that A K Hangal would be a better choice. The superlative performance went om to become one of the most cherished acts of Hangal.

On 8 February 2011, Hangal 'walked' the ramp in a wheelchair for fashion designer Riyaz Ganji for his summer line in Mumbai.[12]

Hangal made his last appearance in the television series Madhubala – Ek Ishq Ek Junoon in May 2012, in which he had a cameo.[13] Madhubala – Ek Ishq Ek Junoon was a tribute to 100 years of Indian cinema. The episode that featured Hangal aired on 1 June at 22:00 on Colors.[14] In the early 2012, Hangal also gave his voice for the character of King Ugrasen in the animation film Krishna Aur Kans which was released on 3 August 2012. This was final work in his career before his death.[15] His expressions for character of Ugrasen was much appreciated by critics.[16]

Awards[edit]

The government of India awarded him the Padma Bhushan for his contribution to Hindi Cinema in 2006.[17][18]

Old age problem[edit]

Hangal, who had more than 200 films to his credit in a career that spanned nearly five decades, due to his old age post 2007 found it difficult to meet his medical expenses. His son Vijay, a retired cameraman and former Bollywood photographer, himself is 75 and has not had a full-time job since 2001. As a result, the family had financial difficulties. Though previously Vijay would take up small jobs but later in like he suffered from back problems and was unable to work. After 2007, Hangal has been suffering from an illness[which?] and could not afford the treatment. At this point, following a media spotlight on 20 January 2011, many filmstars and directors[who?] promised to help him financially. Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan also pledged to give him Rs 50,000.

Jaya Bachchan, who worked with Hangal in 9 films including Guddi, Anamika, Bawarchi, Abhimaan, Kora Kagaz, Doosri Sita, Jawani Diwani, Parichay and Sholay, on getting to know about his condition, said: "Please tell Hangal saab that his daughter was not aware of his condition and I am really sorry about it. My office will be taking care of all his hospital expenses."[19]

Mithun Chakraborty from the Cine and TV Artists Association (CINTAA) asked the association to release funds for the senior actor. On 21 January 2011, Dharmesh Tiwari, the president of CINTAA concurred and said the association has helped Hangal in the past and will continue to do so and that they sending a cheque of RS 50,000. On 21 January 2011 Salman Khan contacted Tiwari on Thursday to pledge his support. Director Samar Khan used then a popular social networking site to spread the word, and by 22 January 2011 evening friends and fans had pledged about Rs 1 lakh. Tiwari said, "If the government can allot some land, we can use it as Hangal saab has suggested to build an old age home for artistes. Mumbai, which is the birthplace of Bollywood, is not paying any heed to us."

Then Ranjan Thakur, the personal secretary to I&B minister Ambika Soni said, "The minister has spoken to Ramesh Sippy and the Film Federation and has asked them to keep us updated on the funds collected for A K Hangal. We are looking at the possibility of a long-term health insurance program for retired actors. Now as per the reports of Times of India dated 24 Jan 2011, he has been offered some help from some from Bollywood fraternity for his medical expenses. On 4 March 2011, it was reported that Amitabh promised to take care of his medical expenses and Aamir Khan promised in one of the press conferences, that now, when he has known about it he would go see him and would help him in every way.

The actor had last shot for Amol Palekar's film, Paheli in 2005. In fact, he had not gone out of his house for the last eight months. "We were surprised to see him get out of home. He would have done it only for acting," said his son Vijay and added, "My father had remained at home for the past few months. The show producer Saurabh Tiwari and senior executives from the channel came to our place to offer him the role. Several filmmakers had approached him in the last few years. But father did not take those up due to health issues."

A K Hangal returned to face the studio lights after seven long years. Having reached the sets of a TV Series Madhubala - Ek Ishq Ek Junoon on a wheelchair, the then 97-year-old actor wasn't sure he would be able to handle it physically. But once the cameras started rolling, there was no stopping the actor within.

Freedom fighter[edit]

Hangal participated in the Indian freedom movement when as a student, he joined protests in the North West Frontier Province against the massacre at Jallianwala BaghHe was 5years old ?.[20] He later moved to Karachi, where he spent three years in prison for protesting against British rule.[21]

Political disputes[edit]

Hangal, a lifetime member of the Communist Party of India, was critical of what he called the role played by political parties such as Shiv Sena, particularly during the Bombay riots.[22]

Death[edit]

Hangal was admitted to the Asha Parekh Hospital in Santa Cruz, Mumbai on 16 August 2012,[23][24][25] three days after he fractured his thigh bone from a fall in his bathroom. His son said that he went to the hospital as he had "suffered a back injury and had to undergo a surgery. But that could not take place as later it was found that he has chest and breathing problems." On 26 August, he was put on life support. Dr Vinod Khanna, an orthopaedic surgeon at the hospital said: "He is on life support system. One of his lungs is not functioning. He is also having respiratory problems." His cremation was due to be held the same afternoon at Pavan Hans crematorium.

In reaction to his death, Shabana Azmi wrote on Twitter: "An era comes to an end. Theatre and film were enriched by him."[26] The Communist Party of India described Hangal as a committed social and political activist who withstood the Shiv Sena onslaught.[27] The BJP's L. K. Advani and Nitin Gadkari also condoled his death.[28]

Selected filmography[edit]

Films[edit]

Year Film Character/Role
2008 Humsey Hai Jahaan
2005 Sab Kuch Hai Kuch Bhi Nahin Narayan Prasad
2005 Paheli Jeevraj
2005 Mr Prime Minister
2004 Hari Om Old Man
2004 Dil Maange More Himself
2003 Kahan Ho Tum Ghanshyamji, Jai's grandfather
2002 Shararat Gajanan Desai
2001 The Adopted
2001 Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India Shambu kaka
1999 Thakshak Homeless teacher
1998 Zor: Never Underestimate the Force
1998 Yeh Aashiqui Meri Mr. Joshi
1998 Main Solah Baras Ki
1996 Tere Mere Sapne Dattabhau
1996 Sautela Bhai Bindiya's maternal grandfather
1995 Live Today
1995 Kismat Nanaji
1994 Dilwale Inmate
1993 Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja
1993 Khalnayak Shaukat Bhai
1993 Jaagruti Raghunath
1992 Meera Ka Mohan
1992 Laat Saab Dinanath/D'Mello
1992 Apradhi Vishembar Nath
1991 Farishtay Abdul
1991 Dushman Devta Suraj's Father
1990 Police Public Ram Swarup
1989 Ilaaka School master, Vidya's father
1989 Abhimanyu Shyam Lal
1988 Khoon Bhari Maang Ramu kaka
1988 Aakhri Adaalat Retired Judge Kapoor
1987 Satyamev Jayate Mr. Shastri
1987 Mera Yaar Mera Dushman
1987 Jalwa Jojo's father
1987 Jaago Hua Savera
1987 Jaan Hatheli Pe
1987 Dacait Bighu chacha
1986 New Delhi Times Vikas' father
1986 Ek Chadar Maili Si Hazur Singh, Trilok's father
1985 Surkhiyaan (The Headlines) Shera's father
1985 Saaheb Doctor
1985 Saagar Baba (in the lighthouse)
1985 Ram Teri Ganga Maili Brij Kishore
1985 Pighalta Aasman Masterji, Anuradha's father
1985 Meri Jung Advocate Gupta
1985 Bewafai Harihar Nath
1985 Arjun Mr. Malvankar
1984 Sharaabi Meena's Blind Father
1984 Kamla Kakasaab, Sarita's uncle
1984 Aaj Ka M.L.A. Ram Avtar Tripathi
1983 Naukar Biwi Ka Sharma, Sheela's father
1983 Avtaar Rashid Ahmed
1982 Swami Dada
1982 Star Mr. Verma
1982 Shriman Shrimati Vishwanath Gupta
1982 Shaukeen Inder Sen/Anderson
1982 Saath Saath Professor Chaudhary
1982 Khud-Daar Rahim Chacha
1982 Dil... Akhir Dil Hai Ashok Mehta
1982 Bemisal Dr. Ramnarayan Goyal, Guest Appearance
1981 Naram Garam Vishnuprasad/Masterji
1981 Kudrat Billi Ram
1981 Krodhi Masterji, Kumar's father
1981 Kal Hamara Hai
1981 Kalyug Bhisham Chand
1981 Bhaaya
1981 Baseraa Sharda's father
1980 Thodisi Bewafaii Arvind Kumar Choudhary
1980 Phir Wohi Raat Vishwanath
1980 Neeyat
1980 Kali Ghata Deewaan
1980 Judaai Narayan Singh, Gauri's father
1980 Hum Paanch Pandit
1980 Humkadam Raghunath Gupta
1979 Ratnadeep
1979 Prem Bandhan
1979 Meera Saint Raidas
1979 Manzil Anokhelal
1979 Ladke Baap Se Badke Principal, St. Andrew's High School
1979 Khandaan Masterji, Usha's father
1979 Jurmana Pandit Prabhakar Chaturvedi,
Nandlal's Mamaji
1979 Amar Deep Ramu kaka
1978 Tumhare Liye Bhavani
1978 Swarg Narak Geeta's Father
1978 Satyam Shivam Sundaram: Love Sublime Bansi, Rupa's uncle
1978 Naukri Ranjit's Father
1978 Des Pardes Pujari
1978 Besharam Ramchandra
1978 Badalte Rishtey Professor
1977 Paheli Masterji
1977 Mukti Colonel
1977 Kalabaaz Poojary
1977 Immaan Dharam Masterji, Shyamlee's Father
1977 Alaap Pandit Jamuna Prasad, Guest Appearance
1977 Aaina Ram Shastri
1977 Aafat
1976 Zindagi Doctor
1976 Zid
1976 Tapasya Chandranath Sinha
1976 Raees
1976 Jeevan Jyoti Raja Kamlakar
1976 Chitchor Pitamber Choudhry
1976 Balika Badhu Masterji
1976 Aaj Ka Ye Ghar Dinanath
1975 Sholay Imaam Saheb/Rahim Chacha
1975 Salaakhen Ram Lal, Seema's father
1975 Deewaar Chander's Father
1975 Anokha Hridaynath
1975 Aandhi Brinda kaka
1974 Us-Paar Mohan's father
1974 Trimurti Jagannath
1974 Kora Kagaz Principal Gupta
1974 Ishq Ishq Ishq Guruji
1974 Do Nambar Ke Amir
1974 Doosri Sita
1974 Bidaai Ramsharan
1974 Aap Ki Kasam Kamal's Father
1973 Namak Haraam Bipinlal Pandey
1973 Joshila Lala Gulzarilal
1973 Heera Panna Diwan Karan Singh
1973 Garm Hava Ajmani Sahab, A Sindhi trader
1973 Daag: A Poem of Love Prosecuting Attorney/Judge
1973 Chhupa Rustam Professor Harbanslal
1973 Anamika Shiv Prasad
1973 Abhimaan Sadanand
1972 Parichay Ravi's maternal uncle
1972 Jawani Diwani College Principal
1972 Bawarchi Ramnath Sharma (Munna)
1951 Nadaan Seema's father
1971 Mere Apne College Principal
1971 Guddi Guddi's father
1971 Anubhav Hari
1970 Heer Raanjha Court Maulvi
1969 Sara Akash Mr. Thakur
1969 Saat Hindustani Doctor
1969 Dharti Kahe Pukarke
1967 Bambai Raat Ki Bahon Mein [29]
1967 Shagird Kedarnath Badri Narayan
1966 Teesri Kasam

TV series[edit]

Year Series Character/Role Notes
1997 Bombay Blue Saraswami Giri TV mini-series, Episode #1.3 (1997) as Saraswami Giri
1988 Jeevan Rekha TV series
1986 Masterpiece Theatre: Lord Mountbatten – The Last Viceroy Vallabhbhai Patel TV mini-series
1986 Darkness TV mini-series
1996 Chandrakanta Parichand An old man role
2004–2005 Hotel Kingston-star one Cameo in two episodes First comes for an overnight stay in the hotel and then helped hotel kingston financially from being bankrupt
1993–1994 Zabaan Sambhalke Cameo in one episode
2012 Madhubala - Ek Ishq Ek Junoon A.K Hangal (Special appearance)

Works[edit]

  • Life and Times of A.K. Hangal (1999) (autobiography)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "A.K. Hangal's condition very critical". Mid-day.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  2. ^ "Two legends, many tributes". Hindustan Times. 26 August 2012. Retrieved 28 August 2012. 
  3. ^ "An actor, artiste and activist". Mid-day.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  4. ^ "Bollywood Actor A. K. Hangal Funeral Pictures". Careermasti.com. 15 August 1917. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  5. ^ a b "A.K. Hangal cremated; Bollywood biggies miss funeral". Zeenews.india.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  6. ^ a b "Entertainment »". 
  7. ^ Rahi Gaikwad (26 August 2012). "News / National : A.K. Hangal of iconic film Sholay passes away". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  8. ^ "Unknown facts about Veteran actor, AK Hangal, who dies at 98 in Mumbai". Post.jagran.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  9. ^ "AK Hangal, Bollywood's favourite character actor". NDTV.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  10. ^ Life and Times of A.K. Hangal – A. K. Hangal – Google Books. Books.google.co.in. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  11. ^ "AK Hangal desired to bake his last cake before death!". Retrieved 2012-09-25. 
  12. ^ A. K. Hangal on the ramp. Hindustantimes.com (8 February 2011). Retrieved on 2012-05-15.
  13. ^ "Hangal saab made 'Madhubala' special for us: Saurabh Tewari – The Times of India". The Times of India. 27 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  14. ^ "'Madhubala': AK Hangal's last curtain call". Ibnlive.in.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  15. ^ "B-town loses its favourite grandpa: Avtar Kishan Hangal passed away on Sunday | Mail Online". London: Dailymail.co.uk. 1 February 1917. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  16. ^ Box Office India (3 August 2012). "Krishna Aur Kans". Box Office India. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  17. ^ Ziya Us Salam (26 August 2012). "News / National : The curious case of A.K. Hangal". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  18. ^ "Veteran actor A.K. Hangal dead | Reuters". In.reuters.com. 26 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  19. ^ "Veteran Actor AK Hangal Ill; Needs Help | TopNews". Topnews.in. 21 January 2011. Retrieved 2012-08-28. 
  20. ^ "AK Hangal withstood Shiv Sena's 'onslaught': CPI – India – DNA". Dnaindia.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  21. ^ "Bollywood’s ‘grand old man’ AK Hangal dies". Thenews.com.pk. 20 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  22. ^ "Communist Party of India's tribute to 'Comrade' AK Hangal | Mail Online". London: Dailymail.co.uk. 26 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  23. ^ "Veteran actor AK Hangal passes away in Mumbai". BengalNewz. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  24. ^ "PIX: Friends, son bid A K Hangal final goodbye – Rediff.com Movies". Rediff.com. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  25. ^ "AK Hangal passes away in Mumbai". The Times of India. 26 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-26. 
  26. ^ "Actor AK Hangal dies at 95". Movies.ndtv.com. Retrieved 2012-08-28. 
  27. ^ "AK Hangal withstood Shiv Sena's 'onslaught': CPI – India – DNA". Dnaindia.com. Retrieved 2012-08-28. 
  28. ^ Business Standard (15 July 2012). "Advani, Gadkari condole demise of A K Hangal". Business Standard. Retrieved 2012-08-28. 
  29. ^ Kohli, Suresh (April 8, 2012). "Bambai Raat Ki Bahon Mein (1968)". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved May 2, 2013. 
30. Obit by Avijit Ghosh in The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/entertainment/hindi/bollywood/news-interviews/Sannata-in-Bollywood-AK-Hangal-dead/articleshow/15791992.cms

External links[edit]