VETERAN film and TV actor Surekha Sikri, known for her impressive performances in “Mammo”, “Badhaai Ho” and popular TV show “Balika Vadhu”, died on Friday morning following a cardiac arrest, her agent said. Sikri was 75. In a statement shared with the media, the agent said the actor was suffering from complications arising out of a second brain stroke. “Three-time national award winning actress Surekha Sikri has passed away following a cardiac arrest earlier this morning at the age of 75. She had been suffering from complications arising from a second brain stroke,” the actor’s agent Vivek Sidhwani said.
“She was surrounded by family and her caregivers. The family asks for privacy at this time. Om Sai Ram,” he added. The actor’s last rites took place at a crematorium in Santa Cruz. Sikri had suffered her second brain stroke in September last year. Her first brain stroke was in 2018. The wheelchair-bound actor had turned up to accept her best supporting actress National Film Award for “Badhaai Ho” in 2019. One of the most formidable actors of her generation, Sikri leaves behind a rich body of work spread across theatre, television and films though she became more popular for her roles in TV shows and movies.
Mourning Sikri’s death, her “Badhaai Ho” co-star Neena Gupta said the actor was a great performer. “I remember when I was a student in the National School of Drama and how we would sneak in and watch her act. I think I wanted to become an actress like her. This was many many years ago,” Gupta recalled. Filmmaker Shyam Benegal remembered Sikri as a brilliant actor. “I am very sorry to hear about her demise. She was an extremely successful actor in theatre and I had seen her plays in Delhi. She had given outstanding performance in three of my films. She was part of ‘Mammo’, ‘Sardari Begum’ and ‘Zubeidaa’. She was such a brilliant actor that whatever role you gave her, she would own it,” Benegal said. Manoj Bajpayee called her one of the greatest talents.
“Very Sad news!!! One of the greatest talents Surekha Sikari ji passed away leaving behind so many great performances in theatre and cinema!! She was a treat to watch on stage. Can’t forget some of those memories. Great craft and a graceful person!! RIP,” he wrote.