Veteran actor Soumitra Chatterjee died at the age of 85 on November 15 in Kolkata. He breathed his last at Bellevue Nursing Home in Kolkata after being hospitalised for nearly a month. Soumitra Chatterjee had tested positive for the novel coronavirus on October 6. After he tested negative for coronavirus, Soumitra Chatterjee was shifted to a non-Covid Intensive Trauma Unit (ITU). Since then, the veteran Bengali actor had been under expert medical care with a special team set up to monitor his health. He was facing secondary infections due to the Covid-19 repercussions.
An official statement confirming the thespian’s demise read, “We declare with heavy heart that Shri Soumitra Chattopadhyay breathed his last at 12-15 pm at Belle Vue Clinic today (15 November 2020). We pay our homage to his soul.”
In the last few days, Chatterjee’s condition had deteriorated and he was on ventilator.
A hospital spokesperson had said on October 28, “We are dealing with the secondary infection and its repercussions. We have given all sorts of antibiotics and anti-fungal medicines in accordance with the sensitivity and we are expecting he would respond to it. We are expecting favourable results and hopefully, his kidney function will bounce back.”
The doctor also told the media that since Soumitra Chatterjee had secondary pneumonia and there were increasing chances of aspersions, members of the medical board decided to protect his airway through ‘Endotracheal Intubation’ and ventilation support.
SOUMITRA CHATTERJEE’S HEALTH WORSENED ON OCTOBER 26
Soumitra Chatterjee’s health condition worsened drastically on Monday (October 26) evening and Tuesday (October 27) morning. His neurological condition also deteriorated, which left the doctors concerned. Soumitra Chatterjee was put on ventilator support with endotracheal intubation to protect his airways on the evening of October 26. It was also reported that his haemoglobin and platelet count have gone down.
On October 25, doctors had said that he had stopped responding to treatment and even though his organs were ‘functioning well’, his platlet count had dropped.
Arindam Kar, who led the team of doctors treating the legendary actor, had said, “Soumitra Chatterjee’s consciousness is little down compared to what it was 72 hours ago. Not very sure which way it is heading to. We have received reports of tests and we can deduce that the Covid encephalopathy is progressing.”
SOUMITRA CHATTERJEE ‘S BATTLE WITH COVID-19
“Mr Chatterjee has been shifted to the ITU after he has been experiencing restlessness and reached an acute confusional stage. We have shifted him to the ITU for close monitoring. He is having several co-morbidities, that’s why we need to be more careful,” a doctor had told PTI.
A special medical team was set up to monitor the health of the legendary Bengali actor, who was a patient of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
After he tested positive for coronavirus, his daughter, Poulami Bose had said, “He is stable. He had a fever in the last few days. We wanted to admit him as a precautionary measure since he has multiple comorbidities.”
On October 15, the thespian tested coronavirus negative. The same day, a senior doctor treating the actor had told news agency PTI, “Today, the health condition of Mr Chatterjee has improved compared to what it was in the last 48 hours. He is now responding to verbal commands and opening eyes at times spontaneously.”
AN ILLUSTRIOUS CAREER
Soumitra Chatterjee had an illustrious career and was conferred with many accolades including the Dada Saheb Phalke Award and Padma Bhushan Award. He was bestowed with France’s highest civilian award, the Legion of Honour, in the year 2018.
Soumitra was always drawn towards performing arts. His acting stint started with essaying bitsy roles in theatre director Shishir Bhaduri’s production when he was in college. Soumitra took up a full time job as an All India Radio announcer, but continued to pursue his passion.
And then, Soumitra happened to cross paths with Satyajit Ray who was looking for fresh faces for his 1956 film, Aparajito. Soumitra did not fit the bill, for he was too old for the role of Apu. Two years later, Ray cast him as the adult Apu.
COLLABORATION WITH SATYAJIT RAY AND MORE
Soumitra Chatterjee was known for his collaboration with Oscar-winner Satyajit Ray and the Feluda series. The thespian immortalised the titular role of Feluda in Satyajit Ray’s films.
Soumitra Chatterjee was also a part of several other works of Satyajit Ray including Apu’r Sangshar or The World Of Apu. Some of Chatterjee’s best works include Ashani Sanket, Ghare Baire, Aranyer Din Ratri, Charulata, Shakha Proshakha, Jhinder Bandi, Saat Pake Bandha, and more.
(With inputs from Indrajit Kundu)
Courtesy – IndiaToday