Renowned art director and producer Nitin Chandrakant Desai aka Nitin Desai passed away on August 2. He was found hanging at his studio in Karjat. On August 4, his last rites were performed at his studio. Nitin was the art director of several films. 'Lagaan' was one of them. Aamir Khan and Ashutosh Gowariker attended the funeral to pay their last respects. Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Sonali Kulkarni among others were also present at the funeral of the creative genius
Nitin was laid to rest in the presence of his family, friends and colleagues. The pics and videos have gone viral and in one of the pics, we can see his daughters shedding tears.
Desai worked as an art director in movies like '1942: A Love Story' which made him popular in the industry. 'Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam', 'Devdas', 'Lagaan', 'Jodhaa Akbar', 'Prem Ratan Dhan Payo', 'Once Upon a Time in Mumbai', 'Dostana', 'Lage Raho Munna Bhai', 'Munnabhai MBBS', and 'Slumdog Millionaire' among others are the movies he worked too.
Nitin Desai was awarded the National Film Award for Best Art Direction four times and he bagged the Filmfare Best Art Direction Award three times.
As per reports, he was going through a financial crisis with debts of a whopping amount of over Rs 250 crore. Independent MLA Mahesh Baldi of Uran (Raigad) in whose constituency Desai’s ‘ND Art World Pvt Ltd’ is located told the media that Nitin was going through financial problems since four-five years, which may have triggered his suicide.
Reportedly, in 2016, he, his wife Naina and their firm had taken a loan of Rs 150 crore and then in 2018, they took another loan of Rs 31 crore, total of Rs 181 crore.
In 2019, there were irregularities in the repayments of the principal amount, and problems started arising. In March 2021, the loan was declared as a non-performing asset and by June 2022, the total outstanding amount had accumulated to Rs 252 crore.