Remembering yesteryears actress Veena on her 13th death anniversary.

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Veena (4 July 1926–14 November 2004), also known as Veena Kumari, real name Tajour Sultana, was an actress.

She started out playing heroine roles in pre-partition films. She made her debut with Garib and Gawandhi (1942) at around sixteen years of age. Garib was made in Urdu and Gawandhi was made in Punjabi and directed by Mehboob Khan. In Garib, she played the role of Lata and in Gawandhi she played heroine opposite Shyam, who played the hero. She became known for her roles in pre-partition Hindi and Urdu films. Her early years in films came with films such as Najma (1943), Phool (1945) and Humayun (1945). Her last film before the Partition of India was Rajputani (1946), in which she played a supporting role.

She decided to remain in India after the partition, and she acted through the mid-to-late-1940s, 1950s, 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s. She played roles in big productions such as Halaku (1956), Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi (1958), Kaagaz Ke Phool (1959), Taj Mahal (1963) (for which she received the Filmfare’s Award for Best Supporting Actress), Do Raaste (1969) and Pakeezah (1972). She retired in 1983 after the release of Razia Sultan (1983) in which she played Empress Shah Turkhan.

She died in Bombay in 2004 after 21 years of retirement when she was 78 years old after suffering from a protracted illness. She had appeared in over 70 feature films in a career spanning 41 years (1942 till 1983).

She was the sister of actor Iftekhar.

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Celebrating Cinema

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