Crediting Amitabh Bachchan for playing an instrumental role in her father’s success, Antara, daughter of the late comic-actor Raju Srivastava, on Tuesday expressed her gratitude towards the megastar for standing by their family in these tough times. The popular comedian, who was first noticed for his resemblance to Bachchan, regarded the veteran actor as his childhood hero and idol. Raju Srivastava Dies: President Droupadi Murmu Extends Condolences, Says ‘He Had an Uncanny Talent to Enthrall the Audience’.
Srivastava died last Wednesday at the Delhi-based All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) after 41 days in hospital. He was 58. In an Instagram post shared on Srivastava’s official page, Antara thanked Bachchan for being a source of “strength and support” to the family. According to Antara, Srivastava had saved Bachchan’s number as ‘Guru ji’ in his contacts. “You are my father’s idol, inspiration, love and Guru. Since the first time dad saw you on the big screen, you have stayed within him forever. He not just followed you on-screen but off it also,” she said. Raju Srivastava Funeral: Kapil Sharma and Bharti Singh Attend Actor-Comedian’s Prayer Meet (View Video).
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During his hospitalisation, Bachchan had sent a voice note to Srivastava’s family to help them with the stand-up artiste’s treatment. “Him reacting on listening to your audio clip clearly shows what you meant to him,” added Antara in the post. A day after Srivastava’s demise, Bachchan had posted a tribute on his personal blog and remembered the comic for his “sense of timing and the colloquial humour”.
Srivastava was admitted to the AIIMS on August 10 following a heart attack while working out at a Delhi hotel gym. He was cremated in the presence of family and close friends in Delhi last Thursday. Srivastava, whose career spanned almost four decades in the comedy and film circuit, featured in hit Hindi movies such as Maine Pyaar Kiya and Baazigar before gaining nationwide fame as a participant in the 2005 comedy competition show “The Great Indian Laughter Challenge”. He was also the chairperson of the Uttar Pradesh Film Development Council. Srivastava is also survived by wife Shikha and son Aayushmaan.
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