A beautiful memorial for late film star Ambarish, that attracts visitors from neighboring states too, would be built, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said on Sunday.
In his address after performing the Bhoomi Puja for Ambarish’s memorial at Kanteerava Studio, he, recalling his association with the star, said: “I used to call Ambarish as Ambarish only. It is the same even now. Ours is a 40-year-old friendship. We used to eat and roam around together, did usual things. and also unusual things.”
Expressing his grief at the demise of Kannada film icons Dr Rajkumar, Vishnuvardhan, Shankar Nag and Puneeth Rajkumar, Bommai said that a memorial for Puneeth would be built soon. The date for presenting the ‘Karnataka Ratna’ award to Puneeth would be announced, he said.
“Ambarish’s life is like an open book. He lived on his own terms. One who lives according to his own terms and his conscience is the real hero. Ambarish never compromised with his conscience. It was a God’s gift. He was born with leadership qualities. Though he started his cinema career as a villain, he emerged as a superhero as he was a born hero,” he said.
Terming Ambarish “a friendly man who was ready to do anything for friendship”, Bommai narrated his own experience when Ambarish used to join them abandoning his shooting immediately on hearing the car horn from the friends. “The producers had even come home and requested us not to come when Ambarish was shooting for their movie,” he recalled.
“Ambarish had special affection for the poor and farmers. But he had no penchant to stick to power. Whether in power or not, Ambarish always detested power in politics. Such people are very rare. When the Cauvery water dispute erupted he quit the Union ministry without thinking even for a minute. Ambarish is the only politician who gave up power during Cauvery agitation,” Bommai said.
“He had a strong attachment for Mandya. His presence was electrifying wherever he was. Ambarish had a big role in making Kannada film industry’s presence in other states. He had friends in every place. He was fondly called the Ajatha Shatru. He was loved by everyone,” he added.
Bommai recalled an event in Bijapur where over 5 lakh people turned out to have a glimpse of Ambarish, as he lauded Ambarish’s wife Sumalatha and son Abhishek for carrying forward his legacy.