Parveen Babi

Parveen Babi, one of the most beautiful, and notoriously troubled, Hindi film stars of the seventies (coincidentally, one of the stars of Amar Akbar Anthony, which I mentioned yesterday) has died.

This is from The Telegraph, Calcutta:
Parveen Babi lived on screen as the face of the bohemian Indian woman and died the ultimate lonely star behind locked doors.

One of Hindi cinema’s first glamour girls, who starred in some of the biggest hits of the 70s and 80s — often opposite Amitabh Bachchan, as in Deewar and Amar Akbar Anthony — was found in her Juhu flat today, probably two days after she died.

Parveen Babi, who lived alone — not allowing in visitors or even a servant — had not opened the door of her flat for three days. Noticing newspapers and milk bottles piling up, the secretary of the building, Riviera, called police. The cops opened the door with a duplicate key to find her dead.

The police ruled out foul play or suicide. “The post-mortem report is yet to come out, but it seems she died a natural death. It appears she died 40 hours before her body was found,”


The svelte and sophisticated actress, who was unafraid to smoke or drink on camera when these were taboo, led the life of an absolute recluse because she was afraid people were trying to kill her.

Rarely seen in public since she suddenly left the country in the early nineties to return three years ago, Parveen Babi’s last appearance was at a media conference in 2002 when she said she had evidence against Sunjay Dutt in the 1993 blasts case. But she did not appear in court to give evidence. Parveen Babi also claimed that many people, including Bachchan, were trying to kill her. She denied the charge later and the case was dismissed .... (more)

And from The Hindustan Times, Controversies Surrounding Parveen Babi:
Early 70s: Parveen Babi first became controversial with her sensational interviews. She was the first heroine to openly take drugs and talk about it. Like many in her generation, Babi openly advocated free love. She gave candid quotes about her affairs with married men like Danny Denzongpa, Mahesh Bhatt and Kabir Bedi, whom she even ran away to Italy with. However, it is alleged that she was madly in love with superstar Amitabh Bachchan and unable to bear him rejecting her advances, she fell into a vicious circle of unsatisfactory relationships.

Mid 70's: Bizarre stories about Babi began making the rounds in film glossies. She was allegedly suffering from Schizophrenia and believed that there was a giant conspiracy against her and that people wanted her dead. She was involved in an intense and destructive relationship with Mahesh Bhatt and suffered a nervous breakdown.

1979: Babi sought mental and spiritual solace through alternative contemporary spirituality. She followed Osho the Indian "Love Guru" for a few years and became involved with the teachings of UG Krishnamurti. Meanwhile, the relationship with Bhatt ended and he made Arth, a semi-autobiographical look at his extramarital relationship with Babi...(more)

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