“Looking at the Annual Report of the Cine Artists Association (CINTA), it seems like they are providing assistance to the dependents of all the dying artists. But, how do I understand when my husband Balwant Singh Bansal passed away for the whole 13 years (this 9th January’) 22) and if I have not got help from the artist union for Re 1 then…?” The eyes of Priya Balwant Singh Bansal, wife of late actor Balwant Singh Bansal, filled with tears. Taking a sigh, she says- “My husband Bansal sahib had acted in 200 films, not one or two. He used to be a judge mostly. Balwant Singh Bansal used to be the favorite judge of the screen for all the filmmakers. After his death, we had sought financial help from Sinta… I was destitute and still am, but no film union helped me.”
White hair, fair personality, slim body and sitting on the judge’s chair, Bansal used to say “order order” when the artist used to come in the scene. Before coming to the movies, he was into sports (long jump and hockey) and was fond of singing. There were many of his Ghazal albums released. Priya Bansal tells. “Had worked a lot in films as well as in TV serials and did various roles apart from being a judge. He left us and I was left alone to suffer in the world.”
“We expressed our troubles in the artist union… He was a member of ‘Sinta’ for 30 years. Just couldn’t get the renewal of last year done. The association did not listen to us. Ignoring my poverty, rejected my request for three times. Sent letters refusing to help Bansal sahib by calling him a non-member.
“I ask, Bansal was a member of CINTAA for 30 years. He was also a member of the Western India Film Producers Association. He worked in big and small budget films like ‘Indian’, ‘Dil’, ‘Ishq’, ‘Veerzaara’, ‘Farz’. Also in many serials like ‘Krishna’, ‘Jai Hanuman’, ‘Tipu Sultan’ etc. Bansalji had worked. Was there no obligation on these associations to adopt a sympathetic attitude towards his wife? The court considered me as his wife. The court gave me the right of ownership of his house. The court considers me his wife, but the people of CINTA and the film association WEFPA do not care about their artist even to ask the news of his dependent. They didn’t have to worry about collecting their annual fees only.
Priya recalls her time with Balwant Bansal. We spent 14 years together under one roof. There was only love in those moments. There was a lot of love for each other. From where he used to shoot, he used to call me after a while and ask – “Kisi hai re tu…?” This desire for desire had given him an unfulfilled feeling in his mind at the last moment. He used to murmur – “We have not left anything for Priya.” Today she is not there, just a feeling.
Priya Bansal lets out a long sigh- “I have a picture of her in my room as a judge. It has been 13 years since he left the world… do you know the judge sir, I have been sentenced to be alone.” And, a silence goes through the room for years.
Anupama: Malvika is in trouble
7th Mumbai Global Achievers Award and Miss and Mrs Global India Award concluded