AHMEDABAD: Monday was the saddest chapter in the life of a man who makes the nation laugh. One of Gujarat's best-known humorist, Tarak Mehta, 80, writer of Tarak Mehta Ka Ulta Chashma', a popular TV serial, lost his first love in a rather tragic way.
Driven by depression, Ila Doshi, 75, Mehta's first wife, committed suicide by jumping off the seventh floor of Paradise Apartment. Ironically, Mehta and his second wife Indu, 75, stay on the second floor of the same building.
Though they separated about 30 years ago, Ila and Mehta shared a bond movies are made of. Soon after separation, Ila married Manohar Doshi while Mehta married Indu. The divorce did not lead to any bitterness between the families, who used to stay in Mumbai at that time. While Mehta continued a friendship with Ila, Indu also took a liking for her. Ila's daughter Ishani was also close to Indu and stayed with the Mehtas till she moved to US.
About nine years ago, Mehtas moved to Ahmedabad. When Doshi passed away three years ago, the Mehtas insisted Ila too should move to Ahmedabad.
The couple even helped her find a house in the apartment in Ambawadi area where they lived. "Ila and Indu would attend all social functions together. They would be seen together at book release functions of Mehta," said a family friend.
Even though they lived in separate flats, the three made it a point to have dinner together. The three of them were together on Sunday night as well. Of late, Ila was feeling lonely and had slipped into depression. She was under psychiatric treatment. Aware of mother's deteriorating health, Ishani flew down from US last week. She was at her in-laws' place in Mumbai when she got the sad news. The daughter performed the last rites on Monday. A case of accidental death has been registered at Ellisbridge police station.