If Mir comes, can laughter be far behind?

7 months ago | 17-08-2016 | IBNS

Kolkata, Aug 17 : While a sharp shower dampened Kolkata, laughter and warmth embraced the Elgin Road outlet of lifestyle store STORY as author Satarupa Bose Roy introduced the gathering to her Bengali book, Mir Ei Porjonto, on Tuesday.

It is a biography on Mir Afasar Ali, better known as Mir, who wears many hats -- radio jockey, television show presenter, actor, musical band leader and more.

Although the event started a little late, Mir was everywhere, talking to his old buddies, interacting with guests, conversing with the author, and of course following up on the cellphone regarding the arrival of the guests of honour, and no matter to whom Mir spoke on the floor, the other person broke into peals of laughter.

Just as things seemed to drag on, Mir, in his usual flippant self, took control of the situation fast and the event proceeded without a glitch.

Mir thanked STORY for helping with the venue and the book promotion.

It was impossible to stay glum when Mir was around.

Later during the evening, actor Sudipta Chakraborty would say how, as a co-newsreader with Mir -- on the television news programme Khas Khabar --she would be terrified because during commercial breaks, even in the middle of the most serious news, Mir would either say something so funny or do a mimicry that she would break into fits of uncontrollable laughter and would find it difficult to put on a straight face when they were back on air.

Mir is such a successful person today, said author Satarupa Bose Roy while talking to IBNS reporter, but he had had to face a lot of struggle to reach here. When I face some hardship in life, I always think how Mir tackled his miseries, what Mir would have done in a situation like this and I get the courage to face the problem.

I want this book to be a source of inspiration for people. To make people believe in themselves, said Bose Roy.

Satarupa Bose Roy had met Mir while she was a copy editor of a leading publication house who regularly brings out a Food Guide. She had the opportunity to work with Mir for the first edition of the Guide and thats how the friendship grew.

I approached Mir with the idea of a biography and he agreed, said Bose Roy. It took her nearly two years to complete the book.

I stay abroad. Therefore, except for the first chapter for which I interviewed Mir in Kolkata, it was a long distance interview, through email, whatsapp, skype, all forms of digital communication because it was so difficult to pin down Mir, who follows an almost punishing schedule, said the author.

I would whatsapp him a question and then would have all modes of communication open because Mir could reply in any. A reply to a whatsapp message could turn up in skype, said the author.

Writes Bose Roy in her book that on a typical day Mir would rise very early in the morning, follow a fitness regime, go to the studio for his stint as radio jockey,and then after talking for a few hours straight, he would leave for the shooting of his television show Mirakkel, which could go on until 11pm. In between Mir would attend to his family duties.

Mir admitted he sleeps four hours a day.

Guests of honour, actor Saswata Chatterjee and lyricist Anindya Chatterjee too said how Mir is dedicated to his work and is equally attentive to all his assignments.

Mir and his ways have become so popular that now people aspire to be him, said Anindya Chatterjee, which is a great complement to any artist.

Actor Abir Chattopadhyay, who arrived rather late and fell victim to Mirs usual antics, said though the book was about Mir ei porjonto (so far), he would love to see Mir continue with his funny ways and more books published about him.

The biography, which was launched in the 2016 Kolkata Book Fair by publisher Shristi Sukh, was completely sold out.

The aim of the programme held in STORY was to introduce the book to more readers as the store is a popular haunt of book lovers.

(Reporting by Uttara Gangopadhyay/IBNS;Images byAvishek Mitra/IBNS)