Suraiya was consummate lonely heart: O.P. Dutta

A month after the death of yesteryear actress Suraiya, O.P. Dutta, the only living filmmaker to have worked with her, still remembers her as "a lonely heart and bundle of unforgettable qualities".

Suraiya died on Jan 30 at a hospital in Mumbai. She was 75.

"Suraiya, Bano to me, was a bundle of unforgettable qualities. A sublime voice, the ring in the voice, the perfect diction, the effortless rendering. But she always insisted that she was no singer," Dutta told IANS.

"She brought joy to millions but what about her? She never talked about it but I knew intuitively what was going on in that pretty little head of hers.

"I had a peep into her heart and mind the day I saw her rendering the song 'Tum mujh ko bhool jaao, ab hum na mil sakenge' for 'Bari Behan'. The cry was loud and clear - the cry of a lonely heart. And lonely it remained till the end.

"We made a movie together titled 'Pyar Ki Jeet'. We were like two children playing 'cinema-cinema', and surprise of surprises, the movie was a big hit!

"There were congratulations all around. But Suraiya insisted she was no great shakes as an actress. The argument was over when she gave a sterling performance in 'Bari Bahen'. The success made Suraiya smile that unforgettable smile that could send a thousand hearts aflutter. She was right at the top and I was very happy for her."