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Remembering Tabassum: Veteran actor and host passes away at 78

Tabassum suffered a massive cardiac arrest on Friday.

Remembering Tabassum: Veteran actor and host passes away at 78
Tabassum Govil/Instagram
  • Team OTTplay

Last Updated: 03.09 AM, Nov 20, 2022


Tabassum, a veteran actor who hosted the legendary TV show Phool Khile Hain, Gulshan Gulshan on Doordarshan for 20 years, died on Friday after a massive heart attack, her son Hoshang said. She was 78. Tabassum, who had chest pain and was rushed to a private hospital, passed away on Friday night at about 8:40 p.m., according to him. She is survived by her son and other family members, including actor and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Arun Govil, her brother-in-law.

Hoshang told IANS that her funeral ceremonies were also finished late last night. He said she was in perfect health, so her family is shocked that she departed unannounced.

Tabassum was married to Vijay Govil, who was the older brother of film and TV actor Arun Govil. Arun Govil played Lord Rama in the historical serial Ramayana (1987) and King Vikramaditya in the cult serial Vikram Aur Betaal (1985), both of which were made by Ramanand Sagar.

Tabassum's parents, freedom fighter Ayodhyanath Sachdev and author and journalist Asghari Begum, gave birth to her as Kiranbala in 1944 in Mumbai. She made her acting debut in the 1947 film Nargis at the age of three. That same year, she also acted in Mera Suhaar and Majdhaar.

Over the years, she became one of the most famous child stars and went on to play roles as an older woman and a lively teenager in over thirty movies. Badi Behen (1949), Jogan (1950), Deedar, Bahar, and Afsana (1951), Baiju Bawra (1952), Mughal-e-Azam (1960), Dharmaputra (1961), Phir Wohi Dil Laa Hoon (1963), Ganwar, and Bachpan (1990) are some of the movies she was in that were well-known.

When Doordarshan was the first broadcast in India in black and white, Tabassum excelled greatly on the renowned program Phool Khile Hain, Gulshan Gulshan. The show, which ran for an incredible two decades starting in 1972 and included prominent cinema stars and celebrities, was one of the most watched programs on DD at the time.

She became well-known all over the country because of the show Phool Khile Hain. Other celebrity talk shows hosted by Simi Garewal, Karan Johar, and others were based on her show. She also starred in a few other teleserials, including the private TV channels' Ladies Special (2009) and Pyaar Ke Do Naam, Ek Radha, Ek Shyam (2006).

To launch her son Hoshang in Tum Par Hum Qurbaan (1985), Tabassum switched from actress to producer in the middle of the 1980s. At the same time, she introduced Bollywood to the hilarious John P.R. Janumala, better known as the comedy superstar Johny Lever.