A major astronomical disaster was averted as the collective sigh from the world of literature nearly pushed the planet off its orbit after Amlan Chakraborty’s fifth death ‘hoax’ proved correct.
Admirers of the writer remember Chakraborty as a man who had embarked on changing the world but did not advance much beyond changing diapers, TV channels and light bulbs.
Oracles were not pronounced but a goat suggestively bleated when Chakraborty was born in 1979 along Indo-Bangla border in a room reeking of poultry litter.
Friends revealed he did not smoke, never sipped a drink stronger than hot milk and had no friends.
Not a copybook Romeo, he briefly went underground after a classmate had proposed; on another occasion, he travelled 1500 km to deliver a five-page letter seeking details of the circumstances under which he was being dumped.
He eventually settled with a university batchmate, regretting the haste when Katrina Kaif materialised in Bollywood.
A responsible citizen, he never voted. He did not believe in god and the feeling was mutual. He wrote 12 books and the jury is still out on whether he was a genius or a fraud or both.
Chakraborty received the Nobel months before being euthanised in a posh London hospital by a young Pakistani doctor he was planning to propose.
Haruki Murakami called his death “end of an era”, later confessing he had been paid to say so. Fellow Nobel loser Neil Gaiman called it “end of an error”, later confessing he had not been paid to say so.