The week started on a sombre note with the news of the demise of writer- director Sagar Sarhadi. As the film industry mourns the loss of the writer who gave hits like Kabhi Kabhie and Silsila, and directed Bazaar, it is time to take a trip down memory lane and talk about the gems that came from Sarhadi’s pen.
“I was a student in Chandigarh when Bazaar was released and I saw it three times then,” recalls Setters’ director Ashwini Chaudhary. Though he later enjoyed other films written by him like Kabhi Kabhie, Silsila and Noorie, Bazaar remains one of his favourite films till date. “When I moved to Mumbai in 2000, he was on the top of my wish-list of the people I wanted to meet. He was a passionate man, a fakir at heart. The doors of his office were open for everyone,” says Chaudhary, who fondly speaks about the number of evenings spent in Sarhadi’s office over unending cups of black tea. “He wanted to make a sequel of Bazaar and had already
written the script. He was so full of stories. Three years ago, I took him along with me to Hisar for the Haryana International Film Festival where his film Bazaar was screened. I had the opportunity to conduct a master-class with him after the show. Sagar sahab you will be missed.”
Gadar-director Anil Sharma, who is coming up with Apne 2 featuring the Deol clan, calls Sarhadi ‘a poetic filmmaker’. “His is realistic cinema. The characters that he wrote in the films were always connected with society, see Bazaar for instance. His Chandni and other movies are celebrated even 25 years on. On Sagar sahab’s demise, all I can say is that it’s a huge loss.” —Mona
Meanwhile, celebrities took to Twitter to pay tributes to Sarhadi. Screenwriter-lyricist Javed Akhtar posted, “Sagar Sarhadi, a veteran theatre and film-writer, who wrote films like Kabhi Kabhie, Noori, and directed Bazaar, has passed away. My heartfelt condolences to the late bachelor’s nephew Ramesh Talwar.” “Rest in peace Sagar Sarhadi sahab,” wrote filmmaker Hansal Mehta.
“Sagar Sarhadi sahab, an exceptional talent , writer of immortal films like Kabhi Kabhie, Noorie, Silsila, Doosra Aadmi, Chandni and many more. May your soul rest in peace… You left your mark in this world,” wrote actress Poonam Dhillon.
Jackie Shroff posted a picture of Sarhadi on Instagram and wrote, “Will Miss You…. R.I.P …” Actress Shabana Azmi tweeted, “Deeply sorry at the passing away of Sagar Sarhadi. He will be remembered by his work both in theatre and films, notable amongst them being Tanhai and Bazaar. He drew his inspiration from life, travelled by bus and train because he was a writer of the masses.”