Best remembered for portraying roles of the iron willed patriarch
in several serials, Singh brought a touch of theatre professionalism
and acting calibre to Indian television. Producer actor Neena Gupta,
with whom he worked in several serials including Dard and
Palcchin, remembers him as an actor with a beautiful sense
of dialogue delivery.
Described as a shining example of toil, tenacity and talent, Singh
was last seen on the big screen in a bit role as Pooja Bhatt's father
in law in Rahul Bose's Everybody Says I'm Fine. Singh, 64,
passed away on Thursday morning at the Apollo Hospitals, Delhi,
after a protracted battle with lung cancer.
A graduate of the National School of Drama, he started off with
a role in Bertolt Brecht's Caucasian Chalk Circle in 1968-69
while still in his first year. Theatre director Amal Allana says
the integrity he brought to his work was simply stupendous.
Best known for his performances in the Ebrahim Alkazi directed Tughlaq
as the despotic king, as Jimmy Potter in Look Back in Anger,
in Dante's Death, Mohan Rakesh's Adhe Adhure, Sandhya
Chaya and other plays such as Nagamandala, King Lear, Mother
Courage (where he played Mother Courage) and as "Chanakya"
in Mudra Rakhshas, Singh also essayed strong roles in several
TV serial director Feisal Alkazi, who worked with Singh in serials
Mullah Nasiruddin and Raj Se Swaraj says he had a
very detailed approach to acting. "When I was handling costumes
for these serials, he would get into every little bit of his own
outfit. From the belt he would have to wear to the wig and down
to his footwear he wanted to know everything. And he managed to
carry off those outfits, unlike a lot of actors who don't know how
to handle elaborate costumes," Alkazi has been quoted as
A soft spoken actor, theatre remained Singh's first love. Among
his performances on television are Dard, Gumraah, Palchhin, Raag
Durbari and Mahayagya. In a tribute, I&B minister Sushma
Swaraj has said that his roles will continue to motivate upcoming
film and stage artists.