Kamal Haasan's niece Suhasini Maniratnam offered the reason for the 68-year-old actor's absence
Sarath Babu's sad demise on Monday, May 21, is being mourned by the entire film fraternity and his admirers alike. The actor was being treated in a private hospital in Hyderabad for various issues including 'multiple myeloma' and despite the continued efforts of the doctors, he would succumb to prolonged illness. Sarath Babu was 71.
The legendary actor's last rites were held in Chennai on Tuesday afternoon and several noted names from the Tamil Film Industry were seen in attendance, including superstar Rajinikanth who has worked with Sarath Babu on multiple cult movies such as Annaamalai and Muthu. Also seen in attendance were Karthi, Suriya, Raadikaa Sarathkumar and husband Sarathkumar.
In the same vein, the absence of another of Sarath Kumar's well-known collaborators Kamal Haasan caught the attention of fans and netizens. Many wondered why the Vikram actor would skip paying his tributes to his beloved friend and while a few gave Kamal Haasan the benefit of the doubt, the rest were slightly critical in their comments.
Luckily, Kamal's niece and fellow actor Suhasini Maniratnam came to the actor's rescue and duly offered an explanation for his absence from the last rites. Speaking to the media present, Suhasini divulged that Kamal Haasan was shooting for Indian 2 at the time and the make-up he had put on did not allow him to step out in public.
"He [Kamal Haasan] spoke to Sarath Babu's family and urged everyone to not mistake him (over his absence). He had wanted to help and save Sarath Babu sir right from the beginning and both Kamal sir and Rajini sir said that they would do anything for his treatment," said Suhasini Maniratnam.
However, despite the context being set, netizens were not fully convinced of the reasons put forth for Kamal's absence. A number of them criticized the 68-year-old actor for giving his work more priority over these personal commitments, with one of them adding that he did not attend mentor K. Balachander's funeral either due to work. Telugu superstar Chiranjeevi, too, missed attending Sarath Babu's final rites.