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Veteran actor Pran passes away at 93 in Mumbai

Pran Krishan Sikand
Pran Krishan Sikand
 
Veteran film actor Pran Krishan Sikand, popularly known as Pran, passed away at a private hospital here tonight.
 
He was 93. The funeral is expected to be held here tomorrow, sources said.
 
The actor, who was recently conferred with the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award, the highest honour in Indian cinema, was suffering from probems related to old age for the past many months.
 
He breathed his last at the Lilavati Hospital here around 8.30 pm, they said.
 
Pran had been unable to travel to Delhi to receive the award personally from President Pranab Mukherjee at the National Film Awards ceremony on May 3. Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari had then come to Mumbai on May 11 and presented the award to him at his residence here.
 
The actor had become a household name in Hindi cinema with his portrayal of the villain in hundreds of films with great style. He held his own against all the "heroes" of those days, including Dilip Kumar, Dev Anand, Shammi Kapoor,  Manoj Kumar and many others.
 
During a nearly six-decade long career, he had acted in more than 400 films.
 
In later years, he made a successful switch to character roles, starting with Manoj Kumar's Upkar in 1967. He played Sher Khan, a Pathan, in Zanjeer, the movie that proved to be the turning point in megastar Amitabh Bachchan's career.
 
His performances in films like Azaad, Madhumati, Devdas, Dil Diya Dard Liya, Ram Aur Shyam, Aadmi, Ziddi, Munimji, Amar Deep, Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, Aah, Chori Chori, Jagte Raho, Chhalia and Jis Desh Men Ganga Behti Hai had been widely acclaimed.
 
Born on February 12, 1920, Pran started his career way back in 1940. He first first ventured into photography but a chance meeting with a film producer got him his first role in a film called Yamla Jat. 
 
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Pran acted in several films, his base being Lahore in undivided India. His career experienced a brief pause due to partition in 1947. Subsequently he moved to Bombay. With the help of the famous writer Saadat Hasan Manto and actor Shyam, Pran got a break in the Bombay Talkies film Ziddi which had Dev Anand in the lead role. The film brought him into the limelight in the Bombay film industry and then there was no turning back. 
 
His performances bestowed an entirely unique new dimension to the negative and character roles in Hindi cinema. He brought new mannerisms and style to each role, helping him to win over the audiences.
 
Pran was the recipient of a number of film awards including the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor thrice in 1967, 1969 and 1972. He was also honoured by the Government with the Padma Bhushan in 2001.
 
Pran began his acting career by doing the main roles in several movies such as Khandaan (1942), Pilpili Saheb (1954) and Halaku (1956).
 
But it was his roles as a villain in scores of movies, including Badi Behen, Azaad, Kashmir ki Kali, Brahmachari, Duniya and Half-Ticket that helped him to establish his Bollywood career on a firm footing.
 
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