Noted filmmaker Kundan Shah died of heart attack at in Mumbai on Saturday. The director who helmed the classic comedy Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro was 70, when he died in his sleep. Shah is also popular for his TV series Nukkad with Saeed Akhtar Mirza. He was one among the 23 other directors who announced to return their National Awards to the Central Government as a part of their protest against growing intolerance in the country, in 2015.
He studied direction at the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune, where he developed a knack for comedy genre. He made his debut in directorial with Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro in 1983. He also co-wrote the film with Satish Kaushik. The film marked the beginning of satirical comedy in Indian cinema and was well appreciated by cinema lovers.
He also made a debut in television, where he worked as one of the directors of popular TV show Yeh Jo Hai Zindagi, which aired in August 1984. He became a partner of Iskra, a company founded by Saeed Akhtar Mirza, Aziz Mirza and others. In 1985, he directed the TV series Nukkar with Saeed Akhtar Mirza. In 1988, he started directing sitcom, Wagle Ki Duniya, based on cartoonist, R. K. Laxman's character, the common man, starring Anjan Srivastav.
After contributing largely to Indian cinema and television, Kundan Shah took a break of 7 years from the industry.
He made a comeback in 1993 with Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, which featured Shah Rukh Khan. Both SRK and Shah were appreciated for their work. Kundan Shah bagged Filmfare Critics Award for Best Movie, becoming the first filmmaker to win this award.
In 1998, he helmed Kya Kehna, which released in 2000. It was the super hit film of the year, dealing with the sensitive subject of single parenthood.
Shah's next releases were Hum To Mohabbat Karega (2000) starring Bobby Deol and Karisma Kapoor, Dil Hai Tumhara (2002) with Rekha and Zinta, and Ek Se Badhkar Ek (2004). None of these fared well at the box office.