Malayalam movie actor and mimicry artist Abi, father of upcoming actor Shane Nigam, died on Thursday at a private hospital in Kochi.
Other than being a popular actor, Abi was Amitabh Bachchan, Aamina Thaatha, and Maveli/Mahabali for Keralites across the world.
Abi was the voice of Big B for Malayalis in ads and dubbed versions of his Hindi movies aired on TV channels. At one occasion, during a party, Abi surprised Amitabh Bachchan by impersonating him. Abi left Bachchan impressed and spellbound by rendering the Bollywood superstar's voice with utmost perfection.
During the prime time of audio cassettes, no Onam went by without the spoof series Onathinedakku Puttu Kachavadom in which Abi brought to life Aamina Thaatha and Maveli. Aamina Thaatha was a Muslim old woman who had a laser sharp tongue, a character Abi essayed in Malayalam movie Kireedamillatha Rajakkanmar and later adapted for his comedy cassettes.
Abi's Aamina Thaatha was daring enough to tackle social issues head on. Aamina Thaatha's criticisms, dipped in great sense of humor, made even those at the receiving end in splits.
He was a contemporary of Dileep, Kalabhavan Mani, Nadirshah, Harishree Ashokan, etc. Abi will be missed on stage, screen, and and mini-screen by Keralites. Rest in peace!