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Sep 25, 2006 at 02:07pm IST

Veteran actress Padmini is dead

Chennai: The legendary south Indian film actress and Bharthanattiyam dancer Padmini is no more.

The veteran actress died following a heart attack at the Apollo Hospital late Sunday night. She was 74.

Also referred to as Padmini Ramachandran, she was the second of the famous 'Travancore Sisters' along with Lalitha and Ragini, who were also renowned film actresses.

Padmini made her last public appearance at a function on Saturday night to felicitate Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi.

Padmini had acted in more than 250 films in Tamil, Malayalam, Hindi, Telugu and Kannada in a career spanning 30 years, starting out in 1949.

She was born in Poojappura in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala on June 12, 1932.

At the age of 17, she made her debut in the Hindi film Kalpana (1949) and her first Tamil film was Manamagal (1950).

Padmini paired in movies with legendary actors like Sivaji Ganeshan, M G Ramachandran, Raj Kapoor, Prem Nazir and RajKumar.

She had made a mark in Bollywood, acting in films such as Jish Des mein Ganga Bahti Hai, Ashiq and Mera Nam Joker.

Condoling the death of Padmini, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister said, "I do not know how the death had a heart to swallow the beautiful and rare artiste. She was a star among the stars."

Padmini, nicknamed as 'Natiyaperoli", a great light of dance, had totally involved herself in the characters she acted - whether a dancer in Thillana Mohanambal or a middle class brahmin woman in Vietnam Veedu.

A disciple of eminent choreopraher Guru Gopinanth, Padmini hailed from an illustrious family of artists. Besides her sisters Lalitha and Ragini, her cousins Sukumari and Ambika were also popular in south Indian film industry.

(With Agency inputs)