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Gorgeous still, says legend’s niece

Ranchi, Jan. 17: Those flashing eyes and full lips that left generations of men smitten hadn’t changed much over the years, said Suchitra Sen’s Ranchi-based niece today.

Legendary actress Suchitra Sen, the superstar of Bengali film industry who had a significant innings in Bollywood with films like Devdas, Mamta, Bambai Ka Babu and Aandhi, breathed her last at a Calcutta hospital today. Sen had been a recluse for 30 years.

“I met Rama masi last August in Calcutta,” said Priya Roy of Burdwan Compund in Ranchi, referring to Sen’s nickname.

“My mother Uma was her older sister. Currently, my mother is in Calcutta while we are watching the news of her funeral on TV as I am sure lakhs of her fans are,” she added.

Roy is married into an old business family of Ranchi.

Reminiscing about her legendary aunt, Roy said: “She used to call me Bulan, my nickname, and would speak very lovingly over the phone when she was in good health and spirits. She was also very concerned about everyone. In fact, she once reminded me to bring a sari for her attendant.”

On Sen’s looks in her autumnal years — an object of avid curiosity for her fans due to her self-imposed seclusion — Roy said little had changed.

“Only her hair was white. But she was still the fabled beauty,” the niece stressed.

Across Jharkhand, numerous fans mourned her death.

“She came to Dhanbad thrice for shooting of films Harano Sur, Hospital and Bipasha,” recalled a fan and retired SAIL employee Aswini Nandi of Hirapur, Dhanbad. “Parts of Hospital were shot at the zinc factory hospital at Tundu, Bipasha at Maithon Dam and Harano Sur at Topchanchi,” he added.