“I don’t know how old I am right now. My father had scripted our horoscopes. But after his death, my younger brother set them on fire. My mother also passed away. So, there is nobody left to ask my age. I think it’s between 50 and 60...” These are the lines from a letter written by Vaikom Muhammed Basheer in 1973 telling that he has no idea of his precise age.
Earlier, Kerala Film Chambers of Commerce had decided to prepare a detailed history of Malayalam cinema. Film historian Chelangatt Gopalakrishnan was appointed as its chief editor. As part of the job, Gopalakrishnan sought details of all related to film industry. It was then, Basheer told him in the letter that he had no way to know his exact age.
It has been mentioned in the letter that he has penned the screenplays for ‘Balyakalasaghi’, ‘Ntuppooppakkoranendarnnu’ and ‘Bhargaveenilayam’ and is working on the screenplay of ‘Mucheettukalikkarante Makal’. Basheer passed away on July 5, 1994. Even after the death of Chelangatt Gopalakrishnan, the letters written by Basheer have been treasured in his residence.