Tapas Pal, Bengali actor and former MP, passes away

Santanu Chowdhury
Tapas Pal, Bengali actor and former MP, passes away

Tapas Pal gained popularity with his debut film Dadar Kirti in 1980. (File Photo)

Bengali actor and former MP Tapas Pal passed away early Tuesday morning at the age of 61 in a private hospital in Mumbai, his wife Nandini Pal confirmed to ieBangla. He won the 2014 general elections from the Krishnanagar Lok Sabha constituency on a Trinamool Congress (TMC) ticket.

Pal, who had gone to Mumbai to visit his daughter, complained of chest pain at the Mumbai airport during his return to Kolkata and was rushed to a hospital in Juhu but died around 4 am Tuesday. He had been suffering from heart ailments and been to hospitals several times for the treatment.

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Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee condoled his death Tuesday. "Saddened & shocked to hear about the demise of Tapas Paul. He was a superstar of Bengali cinema who was a member of the Trinamool family. Tapas served the people as a two-term MP and MLA. We will miss him dearly. My condolences to his wife Nandini, daughter Sohini & his many fans," Banerjee wrote on Twitter.

Born on September 29, 1958, Pal started his career at the age of 22 and gained popularity with his debut film Dadar Kirti in 1980. Later, several of his films got popular including Saheb (1981), Parabat Priya (1984), Bhalobasa Bhalobasa (1985), Anurager Choyan (1986), Amar Bandhan (1986). He was awarded the Filmfare Award for his role in Saheb. Pal also worked in Bollywood films. He first starred in Abodh opposite Madhuri Dixit.

The actor was arrested by the CBI for alleged link to Rose Valley Chit Fund scam in December 2016 and was granted bail after 13 months. His alleged involvement in the scam was one of the reasons why he was not given a ticket to contest in 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

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Tapas Pal is survived by his wife and daughter. (File Photo)

Pal, once a baby-faced lead actor of melodramatic Bengali films, was among the earliest Tollywood stars to add shine to the Trinamool’s anti-Left campaign. His popularity among people living in rural areas of the state was the reason why he was chosen by TMC chief Mamata Banerjee as a party candidate in 2009 Lok Sabha polls.

In 2014, Pal was caught on camera threatening to kill CPI(M) workers and have their "women raped" if any of his party workers were attacked. Since then he seldom appeared in public.

Pal is survived by his wife Nandini Pal, who is a participant of Bigg Boss Bangla at present, and a daughter Sohini Pal, who is also an actor.