Viraf Patel aka Ashish Mehta played a dutiful son of his mother Dayawanti Mehta aka Reema Lagoo in Mahesh Bhatt’s show, Naamkarann. He was an obedient son who despite loving Ayesha Haider aka Barkha Bisht didn’t go against his mother who wanted him to marry a girl of her choice in the daily soap. Though Viraf quit the show after it took a leap, he still continued to share a special bond with the veteran actor.
As the veteran actor breathed her last on Thursday morning after suffering a cardiac arrest, it was hard for Viraf to believe that Reema who used to scold him with authority, encouraged him to do well in life and guided him is no longer there to shower her blessings on him. Hours earlier, Viraf was flipping through the stills of Naamkarann and even selected a few of them to send them to Reema. But little did he know that his wish will remain unfulfilled.
Coming to terms with his on-screen mother’s death, Viraf who happens to be Reema’s last on-screen son, wrote an emotional letter remembering the good old times he spent with his on-screen mother on the sets of Naamkarann.
Here is what he wrote on Facebook sharing a still from Naamkarann.
Strangely, late last night while you may have been grappling with your last breadth i was awake going through the stills of #naamkarann and guess what i stumbled upon? This photograph i had pulled aside, to send it to you. But now I wake up to news of you moving on to another form; another world and my hands have a strange tremble as i type this.
This picture for me is our most special picture, amongst many others as it somewhat captures the quiet offscreen bond we had. The love and authority you would scold me with, encourage me with, guide me with, be mad at me will always remain special.
Your smile, your tenacity, your sense of humour, your love for life, your enthusiasm for acting even after doing it for over 4 decades shone through as much as you.
Am so glad we made up the last time we fought and i got to say sorry and you said lets make a new beginning Viraf, am so glad I got a chance to work all those hours with you and learn from you, all that i did.
Am just very sorry for not sending you this pic earlier but am sure eventually you will see this note and picture, in your own way just the way you managed to do so most things that didn’t meet your gorgeous eyes. till then .. #withlove
your last (onscreen) son.”
Zain Imam who joined the cast of the show as Neil (Avni’s love interest) after the leap took to his Instagram account to express his feelings for the late actor. He wrote, “A very humble human being. I still remember i used to tease you and that pat u would give me on my back. A god mother to half of #bollywood and a mentor to us. It was indeed a pleasure working with u ma’am #rip #Reemalagoo ji # May u shower ur blessings on us from heaven P.s:I would still remember u as kokkie ji from #shreemaan shreemati.”
It is difficult for the team of Naamkarann to come to terms with Reema’s sudden demise as they were shooting with Reema till 7 in the evening. Mourning the death of one of the pivotal character of their show, the team has cancelled the shoot of the show for a day and will be attending the last rites of the actor in Mumbai.