Gharota (Pathankot), Dec 4 : Residents of Gharota, where Dev Anand spent his childhood along with family before shifting to Lahore, are sad that their decades-long yearning to see him on the village soil will remain unfulfilled.
The family had shifted to Lahore in pre-partition days and later after the country's division, the family settled in Mumbai.
“We did not see him all these years as he never visited us ever since they shifted to Lahore and then to Mumbai.
Now our desire to see him among us in his native village will never be realised,” said Sanjeev Kumar (35), resident of the village and an ardent admirer of Dev Anand.
Elders in the village have hazy memories of how Dev Anand went to complete his college studies in Lahore after his elder brother Chetan Anand shifted to that city and how his father Kishori Mal Anand, a well-to-do lawyer practised in Gurdaspur district court before partition and visited the village during vacations.
Rajiv Mahajan, a resident of the village said when the family left the village in 1946, they gave power of attorney of their ancestral house to one of his aunts settled in Pathankot, who further sold the house to one Satpal Mahajan who demolished the old structure to build a new house.
Neither Dev Anand, nor any of his brother Chetan or Vijay Anand visited the village, lamented a village elder.
Sham Singh, resident of neighbouring Chauhan village,said the mannerisms of the evergreen hero were still imitated by the youth of the district.
“His death is unfortunate and our life time wish to see him in Gharota have been dashed. It is unfortunate that he got so busy in his film career that he could not
find time to visit his native place,” Sham rued.Sanjeev said residents of Gharota were in a mood to celebrate today after Punjab government's announcement that Gharota has been made a block of Pathankot district but after news of the actor's death, they changed their plans.
“Both the young and old loved Dev Saheb. The young still loved his inimitable hairstyle and his mannerism on screen”, said Sanjeev.