KOLKATA: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday remembered Suraiya, the legendary actress with a golden voice, on her birth anniversary "Remembering Suraiya, the legendary actress with a golden voice, on her birth anniversary," Ms Banerjee posted on her social networking page.
Born at Gujranwala in Punjab (today's Pakistan) on June 15, 1929, Suraiya Jamaal Sheikh popularly known as Suraiya was sent to Bombay as a child and studied at J.B.Petit High School for Girls.
She entered the film world as a child artiste in the 1937 film Usne Kya Socha and then bagged a significant role in the film Taj Mahal, playing the part of a young Mumtaz Mahal.
Blessed with a naturally good voice, she would sing for a children's programme at the All India Radio.
Hearing her, music director Naushad got her on board to sing in films and made some of the biggest hits in the early part of her career possible.
Remembering Suraiya, the legendary actress with a golden voice, on her birth anniversary— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) June 15, 2018
The talented youngster then made her debut as a playback singer, singing for composer Naushad in AR Kardar's Sharda (1942).
Soon she came to be identified as actress Mehtab's singing voice with films like Chimanlal Luhar's Station Master (1942), Kardar's Kanoon (1943) and Sanjog (1943) Then came her string of films as a singing star - Natak, Dard (1947), Dillagi (1949), Daastan (1950), ending with Deewana (1952), she also sang in Station Master (1942).
Suraiya, who had never been formally trained in music, earned thousands of fans for her singing and is remembered for her natural voice.
Despite her popularity and successful career, the actress called it a day soon enough.
Her last film was Vishram Bedekar's Rustom Sohrab (1963) opposite Prithviraj Kapoor.
Thereafter, she largely stayed away from the limelight except from a few stray appearances here and there.
She won many awards including the Sahitya Academy Award, Dadasahab Phalke Academy Award and Bimal Roy Memorial Trophy.
Suraiya died on January 31, 2004.