By Ashraf Padanna/Thiruvananthapuram
Popular comedian Mala Aravindan, who has acted in more than 650 Malayalam films in a four-decade-long career, died yesterday at the age of 74.
He was admitted to a hospital in Coimbatore after a cardiac attack last week and was put on life support, family sources said.
Thousands of people, including top stars and filmmakers, paid their last respects when his body was kept at the Kerala Sahithya Akademi Hall in Thrissur and St Antony’s High School in Mala.
Aravindan began his career as a tabla artist with the state’s vibrant travelling professional theatre groups after he relocated to Mala from Ernakulam where he was born in 1941.
A noted theatre personality, Aravindan entered the film industry in 1968 with P Chandra Kumar’s blockbuster Sindhooram. Since then he has been an integral part of the industry in the state, working in popular films such as Meesha Madhavan, Tharavu, Patalam, and Thadavara.
Aravindan worked with three generations of Malayalam actors, from Prem Nazir, Jayan, Soman, Mammootty, Mohanlal to Dileep and now the younger actors.
He was the president of the AMMA, the association of Malayalam movie artistes currently headed by Innocent MP, and owned a troupe of mimics Oscar Mimics.
He will be cremated in Mala village in Thrissur district today. He is survived by his wife Geeta and children Muthu and Kala.
Mala is a small, sleepy town. It was the assembly constituency of four-time former Kerala chief minister K Karunakaran.
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