Adieu Nayokraj Razzak | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 23, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 23, 2017

Adieu Nayokraj Razzak

It just seems like yesterday. But it isn't. While East Pakistan TV had started and my friend Shimul Billah (Yousuf) would take part in a drama serial called Ghoroa. The handsome gentleman starring as her father was Mr. Abdur Razzak. When I went to the DIT building to perform, I would often chat with Shimul and got to know Mr. Razzak and his wife in the drama serial was played by beautiful Sharmilee. Razzak Uncle called me by my nickname, Evu.

Around the late sixtees, my aunt Ferdausi Rahman was going to a program in Comilla. I pleaded to my Mom to let us go, we meaning my sister Naeela and I. When we arrived in Comilla, the room next to us was occupied by Mr. Razzak, he and actress Suchanda had come for the function. They had arrived by separate vehicles and we peeped to see if Suchanda was still in her puffed up bird nest-like hairdo. She wasn't. Both Razzak uncle and Suchanda were very sweet and humble. They were great fans of our aunt, lovingly called Moyna. Moyna had taken us in her car and we enjoyed chatting through the ride, singing, enjoying the riverine Bangladesh through the ferries of Daudkandi. The ferry was bombarded with beggar women who sang 'E Modina ja boke mone'. Watchers peeped to see if hero Razzak or Suchanda could be spotted in the car while it crossed the river. Their cars were covered with dark paper, they were hardly visible, in spite of that people flocked around with curiosity.

Finally the hour of the show arrived. We were backstage when Razzak and Suchanda made an appearance and within minutes the gates were crashed, chairs were being broken, there was pandemonium. The organizers ran to rescue us from the green room and whisked us off to someone's house where we met a girl of my age, her name was Sharmistha. We kind of hid there while her Mom made us dinner and a few minutes later Razzak and Suchanda joined us. We ate together, all horrified at the fate of the function. Khondoker Faruq Ahmed (the singer) and Moyna had not even performed! That was quite an experience for us and we were never allowed to accompany Moyna outside Dhaka again!

Later on, in the late 60s Moyna lived in Elephant Road Dhaka with her husband and first born Rubaiyat. I was playing hop scotch in front of the alley leading to their flat when suddenly I found a car drawing up near me. Razzak Uncle was driving, young and beautiful Kabori was sitting next to him. Kabori said, “Nashid, where is your Auntie?” “She has gone out,” said I. “Please tell her that we came to invite her to an occasion.” I forget what it was, most probably the inaugural (muhurat) of their film together. Kabori waved at me and said, “Nashid, don't forget.”

How can I forget? Those beautiful days of simple movies like Neel Akasher Neechey, Tero no. Feku Ostagar Lane, Jibon Theke Neya, Ora Egaro Jon, later Rangbaaz and many more. During the late seventies I was hosting several shows for the Bangladesh Betar in Shahbagh. In a series of interviews of all top actors and actresses, I had an interview with Nayokraj Razzak. By then, he was the most brilliant and shining star of our movie world. I felt a bit anxious, wondering if he remembered me from those childhood days of the 60s. He showed exactly the same cordial, loving behavior as he did when I knew him as a child. His answers were also brilliant. I felt very touched and until he bade us goodbye on 21 August 2017, his endearing behavior remained the same. In movies and otherwise, his achievements are a lore. 

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