Anil Panachooran, the Malayalam poet and lyricist, died on Sunday after a cardiac arrest while being treated for Covid-19 at the KIMS hospital in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. He was 52.
Anil was brought to KIMS at around 7 pm from another hospital in Kollam district. He was being treated in Kollam after he collapsed at the Mattam Mahadeva temple near Mavelikkara. He died within an hour.
Anil is survived by his wife Maya and two children, Maithreyi and Arul.
Speaking with Silverscreen India, the Deputy Superintendent of Police in Kayamkulam said, “Based on the family’s request, a case of unnatural death was registered. The post-mortem results have however revealed that a heart attack was the reason for his death. So we have dropped further action in this case.”
Anil was born in Kayamkulam, a town in Alappuzha district of Kerala. Over a span of 16 years, Panachooran wrote over 200 songs for a number of films, including Arabikadha (2007), Kadha Parayumbol (2007), Minnaminnikkoottam (2008), Madambi(2008), Marykkundoru Kunjaadu (2010), Maanikyakkallu (2011), China Town (2011), Velipadinte Pusthakam (2017), Kuttymaama (2019), Marconi Mathai (2019), Prathi Poovan Kozhi(2019), and Urriyadi (2020).
Leaders in Kerala from across the political spectrum also posted tributes.
Kerala Chief Minister Vijayan said on Facebook, “His lyrics for the movies Arabikadha, and Kadha Parayumbol will remain in the hearts of Keralites forever. His untimely demise is a loss to the cultural and the film fraternity of the state.”
Kerala Congress leader Chennithala tweeted, “Anil Panachooran has left us leaving behind his evergreen poems and lyrics. His works are so gripping and shall live forever. Sharing my grief with his family and friends. May his poetic soul Rest In Peace.”
Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader and Minister of Tourism Kadakampally Surendran tweeted, “I am shocked to hear the news of the demise of beloved poet and lyricist Anil Panachooran. My deepest condolences to the family, friends & all those who loved & adored Anil. Tributes to the poet who wrote “The idea of equality will never die!” Lal Salaam Anil.”
Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee Secretary Jebi Mather tweeted:
Heartfelt Condolences on the demise of poet Anil Panachooran whom all of us were fond of.
ചൂടുകൊണ്ട് വാടി കരിയുമ്പോളും;
തളരാതെ മുന്നോട്ടു ഓരോ അടിയും വെക്കാൻ ആവേശം പകർന്നത്
പ്രിയപ്പെട്ട അനിൽ പനച്ചൂരാന്റെ
— Jebi Mather (@JebiMather) January 4, 2021
Director Lal Jose, who had worked closely with Anil on several projects, including Arabikadha, shared a video of Anil singing Pookkaatha Mullakku. He also posted a tribute on Instagram, paying homage to the impact that Anil’s poetry had.