THRISSUR: When the legend of Mollywood, finally came down to meet the eloquent man of letters on his deathbed, Amala Hospital here became witness to the climax of an off-screen battle that ended in silence.
Mohanlal, the actor stood beside Sukumar Azhikode, quietly, on Monday. Nothing could be said - after all, Azhikode, the titan who shook the tall trees of the Malayalam cinema was beyond the stage of dialogues.
Lal reached here around noon, without prior information, though the grapevine had spread that he might visit Azhikode to end the tangle both had engaged in, about the state of affairs in Malayalam cinema, which was dragged to the court.
The row had ended last year, with the news of Azhikode being admitted to the hospital and Mohanlal expressing his regret and anguish over crossing swords with the scholar whom he respected.
Both had exchanged pleasantries over phone as well. But the actor had not come to visit Azhikode till now.
Now, it is too late, or so it seemed, reading the face of the accomplished actor who had portrayed such emotionally charged scenes on celluloid, playing down the emotions.
He stood by the bedside, amidst the crowd of cameras and eyes, peering at the closed eyes of the man who wrote, ‘Tatvamasi’ - thou art that.
After about 10 minutes, Lal walked back. He did not speak much to anyone, except a line that, “I spoke to him. He would have heard me, felt my presence.”