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June stars on kids’ day after Dev no-show

Actor Dev was to be the star presence in the Children’s Day celebration that the Bidhannagar film festival committee had planned on Wednesday. Five-year-old Ahana Dutta, whose neighbour works at EZCC, the festival venue, had come all the way from Dankuni with her mother on getting the tip-off. A glimpse of the tall, dark handsome actor would be worth the two-hour journey for her. Koel Saha of KC Block had put preparations for her annual examinations, starting November 19, on hold to come and meet her favourite filmstar.

But once the clock ticked past 1pm, the appointed time, word was out that Dev would not come. The two were crest-fallen but made a beeline to get an autograph of June, the joint convenor of the committee, with others. “I know the children are sad as their favourite hero did not come. I promise to compensate them next year,” June promised.

For many, her personal touch made up for the absence of the big-screen star. Eleven-year-old Prerona Roy’s parents had deposited her at the auditorium before they went shopping for bhaiphonta. “I was hoping to see Dev but getting an autograph from June aunty has more than made up for it,” she beamed, before heading for the auditorium to watch Alfie, The Little Werewolf.

All the children got to watch the film free and were served snacks. The majority of them were from Udayan Sishu Shiksha Niketan in Duttabad.