Friday, March 13, 2020


  (With Dharmendra and Raj Kumar)

Following persons were seen in Room No 26 of St. Elizabeth's Nursing Home , Malabar Hill, Mumbai when Meena ji died.

(1) O P Ralhan
(2) Dileep Kumar
(3) Rajinder Kumar
(4) Gulzar
(5) Ali Mohammed Tariq from Kashmir.
(6) Begum Para
(7) Kamal Amrohi
(8) Dr.Shah , Meena ji's personal physician
(9)  Khursheed , Meena Ji's elder sister  and her husband Altaf.
(10) Madhu ,Meena ji's sister and her husband Kishore Sharma
(11) Producer Prem Ji.
(12) Dr. Modi
Begum Para arranged Abe Zum Zum ( Holy water from Mecca). There was a dispute . Khursheed wanted Meena ji to be buried inside Bandra's Sunni  Kabristan. Kamal Amrohi  wanted his  Manju to be buried in Amroha,his native village. A.M. Tariq intervened and advised the mourners to carry Meena Ji's body to her flat .Tariq was in command of directions and arrangements. Nobody knew that Dr. Shah ,her personal physician had silently  cleared pending hospital bills amounting to Rs3500/- that enabled hassle free release of the body from the hospital. Kamal Amrohi paid the amount to Dr .Shah after about two weeks. After Meena Ji's death , Pakeezah was suddenly doing roaring business. Kamal was  making good earnings from this venture.

 Meena ji's body was kept  in her spacious bed room. She had bought a flat in Landmark apartments, Bandra , Mumbai . Khursheed, her elder sister  and her entire family also lived in this flat with Meena Ji. Kishore Sharma , husband of her another  sister Madhu, helped her to buy this property. Sharma was her attorney who also negotiated with producers on her behalf. He called himself a philosopher, writer and palmist . Before moving to this new flat ,Meena Ji lived with families  of her sister and step sister in Janki Kutir. In Janki Kutir house, more than twenty five members were living on her incoming . They were there to help and look after her. That is what they claimed.

The family performed Meena Ji's last   bath (Gusal )  in her flat. The body was kept for the last audience (Deedar) thereafter . At about  8PM ,to the chanting of 'La ilaha illAllah , Muhammad ur -rasul Allah '  the stretcher carrying the body was lifted . A next door neighbour , possibly a fan of Meena ji , turned on the song' Inhi logon ne le Leena dupatta mera' .OP Ralhan, Rajendra Kumar ,Kamal Amrohi and Khursheed's husband were the pall bearers. Dileep Kumar also joined them.A crowd of about 3000 admirers of Meena ji had gathered by now.Ambulance  BMR 8476 carried Meena Ji towards her last destination. Others who sat in the BMR 8576 were OP Ralhan, Rajendra Kumar,Dileep Kumar, Kamal Amrohi and his two sons. The ambulance moved from Bandra to Mahim  to Dadar to Byculla and then to Mascarenhas Road and finally  to the Shia cemetery of Rehmata Baug.

It was 10.00 PM. A big crowd comprising  6000 ardent fans of Meena ji kept  waiting near the cemetery . There were so many people from the film world. Gulshan Nanda was also waiting.  Meena ji read his novels.
Dharmendra   put a white cloth over his head and raised his hands to the sky .' Forgive the deceased her sins and grant her eternal peace O Allah' was the substance of every prayer at that moment. The procession moved towards the pit. Kamal Amrohi's two sons  lowered the body gently . Someone from the crowd shouted 'Kamal Sahib, Aaiye ' .Kamal Amrohi  concluded the funeral by picking a handful of earth  and threw it into the pit. Everybody joined him.Well known  film stars, relatives, writers ,neighbours, musicians  and hundreds of fans.

Around 11PM that night, India's No1 tragedy queen was laid to rest.

(Avtar Mota)
Sources  forbthis write up :-

 Ved Mehta's book on Meena Kumari, old Newspapers, details collected from some senior journalists and old issues  various film magazines

Meena ji died intestate as  a debtor. She owed 5 lakhs to income tax department. Her flat and some immoveable  properties were consequently attached. Her nieces entered into a dispute to gain control  over her immoveable properties . Everybody staked a claim . They wanted Kamal Amrohi to clear Meena Ji's  tax dues so that attachment could be cleared .And  Kamal refused to do so.
A M Tariq (born 1923 ) was a young politician from Kashmir. He was a nominated  member of Lok Sabha and also Rajya Sabha  . Died in 1980. He wrote some books . Like Ghulam Rasool Renzu, he was very well connected to film industry. He was Chairman of Indian Motion Pictures Export Corporation.He remained Mumbai based .Artist Mohan Raina was his friend.Artist Mohan Raina had drawn some portraits of members of A M Tariq's family. He also drew a portrait of AM Tariq.Tariq had his office in Worli. He was Chairman of Indian Motion Pictures Export Corporation Limited . The corporation was started in 1963 . Tariq was provided an   official car and residence by the corporation.Screen ,Blitz and many film magazines carried his photographs with leading film stars and  his participation in  many  filmi events.

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