Bengaluru: Actor Sukumari, known for her movies in South India, passed away at a private hospital in Chennai. She was 74 years old.
The death was following a heart attack. The veteran star of Tamil and Malayalam cinema was admitted to the hospital for burn injuries that she suffered a month ago.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, who had acted with Sukumari in some films, had visited her in the hospital a few days back.
The actor is survived by her son Dr. Suresh Bhimsingh. Her husband A. Bhimsingh had died earlier.
Sukumari, a Malayali by birth, has acted in films in Malayalam, Tamil, Kannada, Telugu and Hindi, and used her own voice in all of the movies without taking the help of dubbing artistes.
She started acting since she was 10 years old. The total number of her films is presumed to be about 2500. She has also done movies in Telugu as well.
In 2003, she was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India for her contributions towards the arts. In 2010, she won the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Namma Gramam (2010), a bilingual in Tamil and Malayalam (Gramam).
Jayalalithaa condoled Sukumari's death, saying her passing away is a great loss to the cinema industry. Jayalalithaa said Sukumari was extremely interested and dedicated to acting from the age of 10 and that had acted in over 2000 films in various languages in Malayalam, Tamil and Hindi.
She created a special place for herself by virtue of her various roles in different languages, the Chief Minister said.
Recalling that Sukumari had won various awards, including the Padmashri, Jayalalithaa said the actor was a simple and affable person. She also expressed her condolences to the bereaved family members.
Next: Evergreen presence in Malayalam cinema for five decades