Krishnakumar Kunnath
Krishnakumar KunnathIANS

Kolkata bids farewell to singer KK with full honours

Kolkata, June 1, 2022

Kolkata on Wednesday bid an emotional farewell to popular playback singer Krishnakumar Kunnath (KK), who died late Tuesday evening in the city after a concert.

The state government organised a gun salute for the deceased singer at the cultural centre, Rabindra Sadan, which was attended by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who rushed back to the state capital, cutting short her political programmes at Bankura district.

KK's wife and daughter were present on the occasion and the Chief Minister was seen consoling them as they were sobbing over the loss of their dearest one.

Soon after the post-mortem formalities were completed, KK's mortal remains were brought to Rabindra Sadan on Wednesday afternoon. His popular track "Yaad Aayenge Ye Pal," was playing at the background then. Many of his fans were seen bursting into tears at that emotional moment.

After the gun salute, his mortal remains were taken to the airport via a "green corridor". His body will be flown to Mumbai and his last rites will be performed there on Thursday.

Meanwhile, a team from Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA), the controlling entity of Nazrul Manch, where KK appeared for what turned out to be his last concert on Tuesday night, went to the venue on Wednesday afternoon. The team led by KMDA's Director General, Supriyo Maiti especially checked the air-conditioning machines there.

KMDA, it was learnt, will soon issue a set of guidelines for conducting such mega events at Nazrul Manch.

Meanwhile, the preliminary post-mortem examination report has said the cause of KK's death was "normal", with no trace of any foul play.

However, the detailed post-mortem report, along with chemical analysis, will be available only after 72 hours, said sources in Kolkata Police, which received the preliminary report late Wednesday afternoon from the state-run SSKM Medical College & Hospital, where a team of doctors conducted the autopsy.

According to the report, following the contracted arteries, it can be assumed that the cause of death was massive myocardial infarction. However, the exact cause of death can be ascertained only after the final report is available.

Krishnakumar Kunnath's wife Jyoti paying last respects to her husband and Bollywood singer Krishnakumar Kunnath aka KK at Rabindra Sadan in Kolkata on Wednesday, June 1, 2022. KK passed away due to a heart attack after performing at a concert in the city on May 31, 2022.
Krishnakumar Kunnath's wife Jyoti paying last respects to her husband and Bollywood singer Krishnakumar Kunnath aka KK at Rabindra Sadan in Kolkata on Wednesday, June 1, 2022. KK passed away due to a heart attack after performing at a concert in the city on May 31, 2022.Kuntal Chakrabarty/IANS

On Tuesday after completing his stage performance at Nazrul Mach in south Kolkata, KK returned to his hotel in central Kolkata. After returning to the hotel, he vomited and became seriously sick. He was immediately rushed to a local hospital where he was declared as "brought dead."

Now, here the question is being raised by a section of the city- based physicians on why KK was not rushed to the hospital directly from Nazrul Manch, especially after he complained of uneasiness while performing on the stage there. During the show, KK asked for switching off the high-voltage spotlights and also took a rest backstage for some time.

Questions are also being raised about the mismanagement in crowd handling at Nazrul Manch on Tuesday evening, where a crowd of double the capacity of the venue entered, which might have created contributed to the difficult conditions inside.

KK came to Kolkata on Monday and on the same day, he had performed at the same Nazrul Manch for another city college.

"While the capacity of the venue is around 2,700 to a maximum of 3,000, on Thursday evening around 6,000 spectators flocked in at the venue, with many watching the shows either sitting on the staircases or standing at the wings of the venue. This is quite common in case of college events. Probably, that over-crowding could have created some suffocation. But it cannot be definitely said that suffocation was the reason for KK's death since no one else fell sick during the event," said a Kolkata Police official on strict condition of anonymity.

However, that has not stopped political mudslinging. West Bengal Congress president and veteran MP, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has demanded a thorough enquiry in the unfortunate event. "All said and done, I do demand a thorough inquiry behind the sad demise of #KK by a competent authority. The prevailing ambience of the Najrul Manch, during his performance reveals many unsavoury questions including critical mismanagement of the said platform which might have triggered his death," Chowdhury said in a Twitter message on Wednesday morning.

BJP's national general secretary Anupam Hazra said in his Twitter message that the organizers of the show should be arrested for pushing a talented singer to death by confinement in a suffocated room. "But I know that this will not happen since the state is West Bengal," Hazra said.


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