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Writer-Dastango drowns in a lake near Pune

According to the police, the incident took place a little after 5 pm at Uksan lake near Kamshet, around 60 kilometres from Pune. Chadha was in the city to perform Dastan-e-Kabir at the Gyaan Adab Centre on Saturday.

Ankit Chadha, Uksan lake, writer dastango, writer drowns, writer death, ankit Chadha death, India news, Indian Express news Ankit Chadha (Source: Twitter/@ankitchadha)

Ankit Chadha, known for weaving research-based narratives and performances in the Dastangoi form of Urdu storytelling, died Wednesday night near Pune. According to the police, the incident took place a little after 5 pm at Uksan lake near Kamshet, around 60 kilometres from Pune.

“As per information, the incident took place when Ankit Chadha and his friend had come to the Uksan lakeshore for a walk in the evening. We have been told by his friend that at a point near the shore of the lake, Chadha slipped and fell into the water and drowned. Some local villagers were informed about the incident, and subsequently, the police station was also informed. His body was taken out around 8.30 pm by the police and local villagers,” said an official from Kamshet police station.

“We are probing the sequence of events that led to Chadha’s death… As of now, a case of sudden death pending investigation… has been registered,” the official added.

Chadha was in the city to perform Dastan-e-Kabir at the Gyaan Adab Centre on Saturday. His body was brought to the city late Thursday night, and the last rites for the 30-year-old will take place at the Lodhi Cremation Grounds Friday morning. He is survived by his parents and elder brother.

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A history graduate from the Hindu College, University of Delhi, he was the president of its street theatre society, Ibtida, before joining Mahmood Farooqui’s Dastangoi workshop. He quickly picked up the art form and gained fame in theatre and cultural structures. “He was incredibly talented and a beautiful person and was taking Dastangoi to new heights. It is a devastating loss, after all, I trained him for six years,” said Farooqui.

The dastans he performed were on a range of historical personalities like Kabir, Rahim, Dara Shikoh and Majaaz, and Amir Khusrau. He has also worked with non-profit organisations to weave modern tales on sustainability, technology and hunger. He has spoken on and performed Dastangoi all over the country and globally, including at Harvard, Yale and Toronto Universities.

First published on: 11-05-2018 at 04:43:48 am
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