May 21, 2017 1:15:14 pm
Akshay Kumar won a lot of accolades for his performance in 2016 film Airlift. Akshay’s character Ranjit Katyal was inspired by the real life of Mathunny Mathews, a businessman from Kerala who helped in the evacuation of around 170,000 Indians from Kuwait during the 1990 Invasion of Kuwait. Mathunny Mathews is also known to people with popular nicknames like Toyota Sunny and Sunny Mathews. Mathunny Mathews lost his life last night and Airlift makers shared their heartfelt condolences for the man.
Akshay took to Twitter and wrote, “Extremely sad news, was an honour to portray him onscreen. Thoughts and prayers with his family 🙏🏻 #RIPSunnyMathew.” Producer Nikhil Advani also shared his heartfelt message on Twitter and wrote, “The real #RanjitKatiyal lost his battle with ALS last night. 1,70,000 families pray for you. #RIPSunnyMathew @akshaykumar @RajaMenon.”
The evacuation of around 170,000 Indians from Kuwait is often hailed as world’s largest civilian evacuation in history. Sunny Mathews, a success full businessman played a key role in the evacuation, given his connection with the Iraq government. Sunny’s son George who saw Airlift earlier told Mid-day about his father’s role in the evacuation, “I don’t want to sound vain, but what my dad and his team did is a lot. They sacrificed a lot, but it just was not talked about much. Air India, which flew the people back, ended up getting most of the credit. And people who were evacuated could come back in a year or two, and people chose to forget the entire episode. My dad is not the kind who would even want credit for what he did. He helped people when he thought he should and that’s about it.”
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