MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA May 07 , 2012 00.55 A.M.
I was busy writing my pending travel diaries of Madhya Pradesh visit , when the news came of the death of Achala Sachdev . She died in Pune on April 30 , 2012 at the age of 91 .
She was not the leading actor but was a very popular character artiste and did many significant and important films in her illustrious career spanning 64 years [ " Fashionable Wife " 1938 to " Na Tum Jaano Na Hum " 2002 ] . In total she did 130 films . I came to know her through Yash Chopra directed film ” Waqt ‘ [ 1965 ] .
I still remember the first encounter with her on-screen . The year was 1967 . The cinema hall was Amarjyoti Talkies , Deoria . A film called ” Waqt “ was being screened there . Every one in the town was going gaga over it . So I decided to watch it . One fine evening I went , bought ticket and entered the auditorium . Film started and the first scene was greeted with claps , loud uproar and whistles . Soon Balraj Sahni appeared on-screen and started crooning in the voice of Manna Dey ‘ Aye meri zohra jabeen ; tujhe maloom nahin ; Tu abhi tak hai haseen aur main jawan , tujh pe qurban meri jaan , meri jaan ………………. ” . Throughout the song sequence , close – up of a lady , who was smiling coyly , continuously appeared on-screen in intercut . My film pundit friends informed me that name of the lady is Achala Sachdev .
Last week , when I read about her sad demise , a floodgate of memories got opened and I was transported to my home town Deoria in Uttar Pradesh . Evening of that day in 1967 appeared on my mental firmament . Even after 45 years , the first encounter of Achala Sachdev is not obfuscated even a bit . It is so uncanny that music director Ravi , who created ” Aye meri zihra jabeen …….. for her , also died last month .
After ” Waqt “ , I started following her career and watched some of the important films . Out of all the 130 films , her most memorable films are :” Foot Path ” [ 1953 ] , ” Pardesi ” [ 1957 ] , ” Miss Mary ” [ 1957 ] , ” Adalat ” [ 1958 ] , ” Char Dil Char Rahen ” [ 1959 ] , ” Kalpana ” [ 1960 ] , ” Manzil ” [ 1960 ] , ” Nazrana ” [ 1961 ] , ” Meri Surat Teri Aankhen ” [ 1963 ] , ” Dil Ek Mandir ” [ 1963 ] , ” Shagun ” [ 1964 ] , ” Sangam ” [ 1964 ] , ” Raj Kumar ” [ 1964 ] , ” Haqueeqat ” [ 1964 ] , ” Chitralekha ” [ 1964 ] , ” Arzoo ” [ 1965 ] , ” Waqt ” [ 1965 ] , ” Mere Sanam ” [ 1965 ] , ” Janwar ” [ 1965 ] , ” Himalaya Ki God Mein ” [ 1965 ] , ” Bahu Beti ” [ 1965 ] , ” Akashdeep ” [ 1965 ] , ” Shagird ” [ 1967 ] , ” Hamraaz ” [ 1967 ] , ” Sapno Ka Saudagar ” [ 1968 ] , ” Mere Hamdam Mere Dost ” [ 1968 ] , ” Kanyadaan ” [ 1968 ] , ” Aadmi Aur Insaan ” [ 1969 ] , ” Bandhan ” [ 1969 ] , ” Prem Pujari ” [ 1970 ] , ” Mera Naam Jokar ” [ 1970 ] , “ Heer Ranjha ” [ 1970 ] , ” Hare Rama Hare Krishna ” [ 1971 ] , ” Andaz ” [ 1971 ] , ” Paraya Dhan ” [ 1971 ] , ” Kal Aaj Aur Kal ” [ 1971 ] , ” Daag ” [ 1973 ] , ” Kora Kagaz ” [ 1974 ] , ” Geeta Mera Naam ” [ 1974 ] , ” Julie ” [ 1975 ] , ” Laila Majnu ” [ 1976 ] , ” Chandni ” [ 1989 ] , ” Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge ” [ 1995 ] , ” Kabhie Khushi Kabhie Gham ” [ 2001 ] and ” Na Tum Jaano Na Hum ” [ 2002 ] .
Out of her 64 – year – long career ; 3 particular years ; 1964 [ 5 films ] ; 1965 [ 7 films ] and 1971 [ 6 films ] could be considered her most successful years in films . After ” Chandni ” [ 1989 ] she disappeared from the films for 6 years . She again returned with Yash Chopra’s ” Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge ” [ 1995 ] . And after 6 years gap , she again gave a super hit ” Kabhie Khushi Kabhie Gham ” [ 2001 ] .
Born in Peshawar in 1920 , she started her career as child artiste . She did her first film ” Fashionable Wife ” [ 1938 ] at the age of 18 years . She rose to prominence at the age of 45 years with ” Waqt ” [ 1965 ] , a film produced by B. R. Chopra and directed by Yash Chopra . She worked with Ashok Kumar , Dilip Kumar , Raj Kapoor and Dev Anand . Then she worked with Shammi Kapoor , Rajendra Kumar , Sunil Dutt and Dharmendra . Generations changed but she continues to play stellar roles . She , during her later years , worked with Amitabh Bachchan , Rishi Kapoor , Shah Rukh Khan and Hritik Roshan also . She was there in ” Sapno Ka Saudagar ” [ debut of Hema Malini ] , ” Prem Pujari ” [ debut of Dev Anand as director ] , ” Mera Naam Joker ” [ debut of Rishi Kapoor ] , ” Paraya Dhan ” [ debut of Rakesh Roshan as actor ] , ” Kal Aaj Aur Kal ” [ debut of Randhir Kapoor as actor and directed ] , ” Daag ” [ debut of Yash Raj Films ] , ” Geeta Mera Naam ” [ debut of Sadhna as director ] and above all ” Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge ” [ debut of Aditya Chopra as director ] .
She worked , before partition , for All India Radio , Lahore and after partition for All India Radio , New Delhi .
During her later years she married Clifford Douglas Peters and settled in Pune . From there she occasionally came to Mumbai for Yash Chopra’s films .
In 2011 she fell in her kitchen and since then was admitted in a Pune hospital . Her end came on April 30 , 2012 .
I was saddened to see her these two photos . A young Achala Sachdev of ” Waqt “ and a bed – ridden Achala Sachdev befor her death . Her only son from her first marriage is settled in U. S. A. and had no time for her . I am no one to comment on his relationship with his mother but it is heart – wrenching to know that Achala Sachdev died a lonely death . From September 2011 to April 2012 , she was bed – ridden with fractured leg , total paralysis and loss of vision and her only son was leading a comfortable life in U. S. A. with his nuclear family . I have no authority to say anything to him but I know that I would not have abandoned my mother like this .
I can only offer my prayers for Achala Sachdev ji . May God give her peace and tranquility .
Farewell ” ZOHRA JABEEN ” !! You are gone but ” star – like glitter of your forehead ” shall always remain with us .
As long as we have prints of ” Waqt “ , you will live in our heart .
MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA
- Achala Sachdev passes away.. (satyamshot.wordpress.com)
- Bollywood’s Achala Sachdev dies (variety.com)
Filed under: Obituary Tagged: | Aadmi Aur Insaan, Aakashdeep, Achala Sachdev, Acting Trainer, Adalat, Adtya Chopra, Amitabh Bachchan, Andaz, Arzoo, Ashok Kumar, Aye meri zohra jabeen, B. R. Chopra, B. R. Films, Bahu Beti, Balraj Sahni, Bandhan, Bollywood, Chandani, Char Dil Char Rahen, Chitralekha, Daag, Deoria, Dev Anand, Dharmendra, Diction Trainer, Dil Ek Mandir, Dilip Kumar, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, Film, Foot Path, Geeta Mera Naam, Hamraaz, Haqueeqat, Hare Rama Hare Krishna, Heer Ranjha, Hema Malini, Himalaya Ki God Mein, Himalaya Ki God Men, Hindi Teacher, Hritik Roshan, Jawar, Kabhie Khushi kabhie Gham, Kal Aaj Aur Kal, Kalpana, Kamal Nayan Chaturvedi, Kora Kagaz, Laila Majnu, Manna Dey, Manzil, Mera Naam Joker, Mere Hamdam Mere Dost, Mere Sanam, Meri Surat Teri Aankhen, Miss Mary, Mumbai, MUMBAI - MAHARASHTRA - INDIA, Music Director Ravi, Na Tum Jaano Na Hum, Nazrana, Obituary, Paraya Dhan, Pardesi, Prem Pujari, Raj Kapoor, Raj Kumar, Rajendra Kumar, Rakesh Roshan, Randhir Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, Sadhna, Sangam, Sapno Ka Saudagar, Shagird, Shagun, Shah Rukh Khan, Shammi Kapoor, Sunil Dutt, Uttar Pradesh, Vidur, Vidur Chaturvedi, Vidur on Twitter, Vidur's Blog, Waqt, Yash Chopra, Yash Raj Films