Veteran actress Shashikala passed away in Mumbai

MUMBAI: Veteran film and television actress Shashikala Saigal better known by her first name Shashikala, passed away yesterday (April 4) at her residence in Mumbai, she was 88. As there was no formal statement from her family, the reasons for her demise is unknown.

The talented actress who was a Padma Shri awardee played supporting roles in hundreds of Bollywood films from the 1940s and later also in television from the 2000s was born in Solapur as Shashikala Jawalkar in 1932.

Starting at an early age of 5 Shashikala made a mark with her performances in negative roles and featured in over 100 films in her career. After she acted in Tarachand Barjatya’s Aarti with Meena Kumari, Ashok Kumar and Pradeep Kumar in 1962 in a negative role for the first time, for several years after that she played the role of a villainess or as it was called by the media at that time, 'the vamp' on screen.

She is remembered for her strong performance in hits like Aarti, Khubsoorat, Anupama and Ayi Milan Ke Bela to name a few.

While in her early twenties, she met and married Om Prakash Saigal, who belonged to the Kundan Lal Saigal family, and has two daughters one of whom has passed away due to cancer. 

In 2011 when she received the Lifetime Achievement Award during the inauguration of the 9th Pune International Film Festival, Shashikala had said that she regretted not getting lead heroine roles during her career and being typecast in negative characters, and did not find peace of mind till she came in contact with Mother Teresa.

She worked with Mother Teresa for several years in Calcutta and continued to be a staunch follower throughout her life.

Shashikala also worked in television and was part of popular shows like Sonpari and Jeena Isi ka Naam Hai. In Sonpari, she played daadi to Fruity and Tooty.

Among Bollywood celebrities who paid tributes to Shashikala through social media included Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Naved Jafri, Farhan Akhtar and others. Priyanka who shared a classic picture of the actress expressed gratitude for having had the opportunity to work with her in her film, 'Mujhse Shaadi Karogi', also starred Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar. 

Naved Jafri shared on Instagram, “Our dear Shashikala Ji is no more. She was a great artist. May the almighty give the family strength and patience to bear this irreplaceable loss. Deepest condolences. #ShashiKala #RIPShashikala.”


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