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Bollywood grieves for ‘maa’
Veteran actress and Bollywood’s most-loved on-screen mother Reema Lagoo, who acted in hit films like Maine Pyar Kiya, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Hum Aapke Hain Koun!, Yes Boss, Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak and Rangeela, died of a cardiac arrest in the wee hours of Thursday.
After she complained of chest pain shortly after midnight on Wednesday, Reema was rushed to the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, where she passed away following a cardiac arrest at 3.15 am.
“She complained of chest pain so we took her to hospital around 1 am. She died due to a cardiac arrest at around 3.15 am. It is shocking for all of us,” her son-in-law Vinay Waikul said.
Reema, 59, is survived by her former husband and actor Vivek Lagoo, and their actress-director daughter Mrunmayee Lagoo. Scores of Bollywood personalities turned out at her Shastri Nagar residence to have a last glimpse of Reema and later at the nearby Oshiwara crematorium in north Mumbai, where her cremation was held later in the day. Reema’s daughter Mrunmayee Lagoo conducted the last rites.
Film star Aamir Khan, who had acted with the departed actress in films like Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak and Rangeela, his wife Kiran Rao, his ex-wife Reena Dutta, Kajol, Rishi Kapoor, Tanvi Azmi, Sonali Kulkarni, Kiran Kumar, Raza Murad and her television serial Shrimaan Shrimati co-actor Rakesh Bedi were among those who attended Reema’s funeral.
“This is very tragic. We are still in shock. She had no major ailment that we knew about,” Aamir said.
Having begun her career in the Marathi film Sinhasan (1979) and made her debut in Bollywood with Kalyug (1981) starring Shashi Kapoor, Rekha and Raj Babbar in the lead, Reema went on to become the most popular character actress in the 80s, 90s and even in the early 2000s.
Reema, who played the maximum number of roles as a mother, acted as Salman Khan’s mother in films such like Maine Pyar Kiya (1989), Saajan (1991), Judwaa (1997) and Hum Saath Saath Hain (1999) Reema as Salman’s mother, Kaushalya Choudhary, in the film won the hearts of millions of movie-goers when she finally let her son go in search of his true love.
Her role as the mother of Rahul Roy in Aashiqui (1990) also won her considerable critical acclaim. She played the role of Sridevi’s mother in the 1993 crime thriller Gumrah, Ahshay Kumar’s mother in Jai Kishan (1994), Urmila Matondkar’s mom in Rangeela (1995). Reema played the role of Shahrukh’s mother in Yes Boss, while she acted as Madhuri Dixit’s mother in Hum Aapke Hain Koun!
Reema, who came to be known as the “new age mother” in Hindi cinema, played Kajol’s mother in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. She also co-starred with Kajol in Yeh Dillagi and Pyar To Hona Hi Tha.
“RIP Reemaji. You will always be loved and remembered in the best ways, with your wonderful smile,” Kajol tweeted.
Reema’s role as Sanjay Dutt’s mother in the film “Vaatsav” proved to be a memorable role in her career.
Rishi Kapoor, who co-starred with Reema in films like Henna, Prem Granth and Shreeman Aashique, tweeted: “Good friend. Heartfelt condolences.”
A television actress par excellence, Reema debuted on the small screen in 1985 with the Hindi series Khandaan. Her roles in Shriman Shrimati as Kokila Kulkarni with Rahul Bedi and as Devaki Verma starring opposite Supriya Pilgaonkar in Tu Tu Main Main made her a household name.
Reema was awarded the Maharashtra State film Award for best actress in the 2002 film Reshamgaath, while her role in Janma (2011) came in for praise. In recognition of her contribution to Marathi cinema, she was awarded the V Shantaram Award by the Maharashtra Government.
Naamkarann, a television serial produced by Mahesh Bhatt,was Reema’s last acting job. She was playing a negative role in this television serial at the time of her death.
Meanwhile, film personalities mourned her death. “Saddened to hear about the demise of #ReemaLagoo, had the opportunity to work with her...a fine actress and person. Prayers to the family,” Akshay Kumar tweeted.
“Shocked & saddened. Reema Lagoo ji will be missed. She will always be remembered for her iconic roles in cinema & on stage. RIP,” said Riteish Deshmukh.
“So terribly sad 2hear #ReemaLagoo is no more. Worked with her in so many songs n she was just the most loving soul..condolences 2 her family,” choregrapher and director Farah Khan said.
“Our very dear Reema Lagoo is no more. Always kind, funny and loving. Saddened. RIP #ReemaLagoo,” Boman Irani tweeted.
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