Ashok Mehta critically ill, hospitalised

Subhash K. Jha

Mumbai, March 1 (IANS) One of India's most accomplished cinematographers Ashok Mehta is critically ill and is being treated at the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital here.

"Yes, I got to know of Ashok's condition. He's like a father-figure to me. I'm in fact on the way to see him now. I guess he wanted to keep his illness very quiet," said Arjun Rampal, who is Mehta's discovery.

The fact of Mehta's illness surfaced during the recording of a new chat show "Isski Ka Naam Zindagi Hai", hosted by Raveena Tandon. It was a segment featuring Arjun and one of the people who came on the video monitor to talk about Arjun was Mehta.

The cinematographer had discovered Arjun and had cast him in the lead in "Moksha", the only feature film that Mehta has directed.

Apparently when Arjun saw him rasping his good wishes from a hospital bed, his face went ashen.

Mehta shot some of the most vivid and evocative films including Shekhar Kapoor's "Bandit Queen", Shyam Benegal's "Mandi" and "Trikaal", Aparna Sen's "36 Chowringhee Lane" and "Paroma", Shashi Kapoor's "Utsav", Subhash Ghai's "Ram Lakhan", "Khalnaayak" and "Kisna" and M.F. Hausain's "Gaja Gamini".

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