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Nargis is one of the jewels of Bollywood celebrating 100 years
Indian Cinema began with 'Raja Harishchandra' in 1913 and today we are almost in the mid of 2013. A journey of 100 years. But if you ask an Indian to name three 'all times great' males of Hindi film industry he won't think twice.

Of course they are Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapur and Dev Anand. You ask to name three big actresses and the common choice would be Nargis, Madhubala and Meena Kumari. Madhubala was the Venus of Indian Screen, Meena was the Tragedy Queen but Nargis was an all-rounder who was always taller than the role.

Nargis’ is a Persian word adopted in Urdu and it means flower daffodil. Her real is Fatima Rashid. She was born on June 1, 1929 in Rawalpindi. In records her father is named Uttamchand Mohanchand, a Hindu Mohyal Brahmin. Her mother Jaddanbai was the famous well known dancer, singer, composer, director in British India. She was the sister of and daughter to Jaddanbai and Uttamchand Mohanchand, a Hindu Mohyal Brahmin and she was the sister of of Bollywood actors, Anwar Hussain and Akhtar Hussain.

Fatima Rashid entered the film industry as a child artiste 'Baby Rani' in 1935 in the film ‘Talashe Haq’. Initially, when she was maturing she came close to Dilip Kumar but the chemistry didn’t work. With Raj Kapur she formed a real and reel romantic couple. It was a well-admired and successful film couple. But Raj was already married to Krishna and Nargis was not ready to live the rest of her life as a concubine of Raj. He refused to divorce his wife they parted ways.

The magnum opus “Mother India’ had finally sealed the fate of Nargis. She was playing the role of mother of Birju. Sunil Dutt was Birju and also a Mohyal Brahmin in real life from Jhelum Punjab. In a scene where fire has engulfed the heroine in real life, Sunil Dutt played the role of Savior. Risking his own life, Sunil Dutt jumped into fire and brought out Nargis from the harm’s way. Cupid struck and they married on 11 March 1958.

Most of the films in which Nargis acted were a success and super success. They are known as milestone of Hindi cinema. Nargis has three children namely Sanjay Dutt, and two daughters, Priya, and Anju. Her son suffers from complex problems and recently he was jailed for terrorist activities during the now infamous Bombay Bomb Blast case of 1993. Her daughter Priya Dutt is a member of Parliament from Mumbai. Pancreatic cancer claimed Nargis on May 3, 1981 - ironically the same year her son first appeared in movies.

Her most famous role came in Oscar-nominated ‘Mother India’ in 1957. She won the ‘Filmfare Best Actress’ Award for her performance. Her last film appearance was the 1967 film ‘Raat Aur Din.’ She was also nominated for Rajya Sabha.

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