Mushtaq Kak passes away, Artistic Community Pays tributes

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Noted theatre actor and director Mushtaq Kak as Kabuliwala in 2015 Bollywood film for which he will be remembered for long. Photo: Open Source

JAMMU: Counted among the front-ranking theatre activist, actor and director Mushtaq Kak passed away in the early hours of Sunday morning at his residence in Sidhra, on the outskirts of Jammu city.

He was 62. He had a prolonged battle with cancer during the past few months. His family members were by his side when he breathed his last at about 2.30 AM on Sunday. His

His Namaz-e-Janaza was held this afternoon at Sidhra, where he was laid to rest at the nearby graveyard.

Born to a Kashmiri father and Dogra mother in 1961, Mushtaq Kak carved a niche for himself in the field of theatre of J&K and rest of the country and later immensely contributed in the field of cinema and television even at the national level.

According to his family, Mushtaq Kak, after fighting a long battle with Cancer, breathed his last early this morning at his residence.

A multi-faceted personality, Mushtaq Kak received several awards and honours for his contribution and these awards also included Sangeet Natak Akademi award in 2015 for theatre direction. He was associated with Shri Ram Centre, New Delhi as the artistic director for a number of years. To maintain a close rapport with his team and theatre actors, Mushtaq Kak shifted to Delhi for many years.

He also received the best director award for “Andha Yug”, “Malika”, and “Pratibhimb”. Of his plays, “Maha Brahmin” and “Alladad” were adjudged best plays for the years 1999 and 2000, respectively.

He directed more than 100 plays, including those based on short stories by Saadat Hasan Manto, Anton Chekhov, Vijay Tendulkar, Krishan Chander, Sharad Joshi, Vasant Kanetkar and Moti Lal Kemmu. Kak also worked in some of the popular movies of Indian cinema between 2007 and 2022.

A file photo of Mushtaq Kak

Some of his movies included Amal (2007); Hijack (2008); Sikandar (2009); Vishwaroopam-I (2013); Dishoom (2016); M S Dhoni: The untold Story (2016); Vishwaroopam II (2018); Romeo Akbar Walter (2019); The Family Man (2019); Shikara (2020); Kesari (2019) and Tejas (2023).

People associated with film, television and stage have expressed grief and sorrow over his death.

His daughter Ifra Kak, who is also a theatre activist and working in Jammu University said that her father was fighting a battle against cancer for the last one year but his condition started deteriorating in August this year.

People from all walks of life, especially those associated with the arts and culture expressed their grief and sorrow over his death.

“Mushtaq Kak was an excellent actor, theatre director of Shri Ram Centre, Delhi but he left the director’s job… In his departure I see the end of an era, especially in the modern theatrical movement of Jammu & Kashmir,” former additional director general of Doordarshan and former secretary of J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages Rafeeq Masoodi wrote on X.

The artists of Natrang have also condoled the sad and untimely demise of Kak.
Director Natrang, Padma Shri Balwant Thakur expressed his sorrow over this tragic loss and asserted that this created a huge vacuum in the theatre scenario of the country. He was a multifaceted personality and had great skills of design and direction. Other than theatre, Mushtaq Kak, son of the soil had contributed immensely in the field of Cinema and Television. Balwant Thakur expressed his sorrow over this tragic loss and asserted that this has created a huge vacuum in the theatre scenario of the Country.