KARACHI, March 29: Renowned artiste Latif Kapadia died of cardio-respiratory arrest here on Friday morning. He was 68.

His funeral was held after Zuhar. He was buried in Mewashah graveyard. Soyem will be held at B/4, Kamla Nehru Road, Cosmopolitan Colony, on Sunday between Asr and Maghrib. He leaves behind his wife, a son and four daughters.

He was busy recording a PTV play on Ghalib, titled Afsos hasil ka, Thursday night when at 8.30pm he had some breathing problem. Actor Moin Akhter took him to the Liaquat National Hospital from where he was discharged after minor treatment.

Born on March 27, 1934, in Nasik, Maharashtra, Latif Kapadia was one of the 12 children of a government official who migrated to Karachi after the partition of the subcontinent.

He was initiated into acting in 1953 by a theatre-loving couple, Meherji and Pervaiz Dastur. The two were the leading lights of the Bombay Amateur Artists Association. The group put up many plays in the 1950s and Kapadia featured in most of them. About the same time, he befriended comedian Safirullah who afterwards became famous as Lehri. They presented many comic skits on stage.

In 1957, Latif Kapadia joined the Avant-Garde Arts Theatre formed by Ali Ahmed and Latif’s elder brother, Ghulam Ali Kapadia. Ali Ahmed’s play, Sheeshay kay aadmi, was a great hit. Latif Kapadia had played a pivotal role in it. Other plays that earned him fame were Qissa jagtay sotay ka (also Ali Ahmed’s), Ek din ka sultan and Phir bhi hum jeetay rahay.

When television came to Karachi in 1967, Latif Kapadia did his first PTV play, Sheeshay kay aadmi, recreating the same role. His other television plays include: Baarish, Barzakh, Shikastay Arzoo, Gurez and Nadan Nadia.

Latif Kapadia also played a role in a film titled “Very good Dunya, very bad log.”

Besides being a talented artiste, Latif Kapadia was a humanist to the core. Always smiling and apparently happy-go-lucky sort, he never missed any opportunity to espouse the causes of the under-priviledged. He did not need, or wished, any labels but progressive he was and remained so till he breathed his last.

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