Anindya Chatterjee is one of the busiest actors of Tollygunge (Kolkata) . Working in popular movies, serials and web series one after another. But a few years ago, his life was different. He used to fall down on the streets, railway stations or parks due to drug intoxication. His parents were ashamed to introduce him, he could not walk with his head high in the society. Many nights have passed in the custody of the police. That Anindya turned around in 2008. He came back after drug free himself. Later he also worked as a goodwill ambassador with Calcutta Police. He wrote the story of his struggle with drugs on Facebook. He also gave permission to publish it in Prothom Alo. A slightly edited version of his post was published today on International Anti-Drug Day
That day in 2008 is still clear to me. I had to go back to rehab after appearing in the Banksal court. Bangaon local at 9 o’clock and was with me for the last time to get drunk, a little brown sugar, a few leaves in Pati Bengali and a syringe, a little cotton.
A little further down at Habra (Howrah) station is the rehab, from where my struggle to stay fit began. Had about 28 or 29 detoxes and rehabs before that. There was a pattern of relapse the day I quit. A continuous circle for 6-7 years. Either I’m drunk outside, or I’m fine under lock and key. After getting out of the lock and key, addiction again. I didn’t believe that I would ever get better, nor did anyone believe that I would ever quit. North Kolkata’s middle-class family and how much power?
Everything in the house is almost finished by that day. Be it mother’s gold jewelry or father’s savings. Then there is the outside lot. Iron, aluminum, bronze things were as precious to me as gold. It took exactly three minutes to unlock any car. A Nokia mobile phone means cash two-three thousand. That’s a lot for me.
I started from the bottom and my struggle is a little bit different, a little bit harder. My fight is with that monkey, which is still inside me. Which I have to keep constantly. If the expensive car-house is a little late for him, it will be. I don’t mind if not. Mom saw me sober before she left, but dad saw me turn around before she left. Proudly told everyone, I am Anindya’s father. I am also proud of my sister. What else do you want?