Surekha Sikri Passes Away: Balika Vadhu Co-Star Annup Sonii Recalls The 6 Years Shooting With The National Award Winning Actress

Stalwart and National Award-winning actress Surekha Sikri passed away today due to a heart attack. As many mourned her demise, her on-screen son Annup Soni spoke with us exclusively sharing his fond memories.

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Surekha Sikri Passes Away: Balika Vadhu Co-Star Annup Sonii Recalls The 6 Years Shooting With The National Award Winning Actress
The passing away of theatre and film veteran  Surekha Sikri has left many of her colleagues shell-shocked, none more so than that quietly effective actor Annup Sonii who played Ms Sikri’s son in the long-running series Balika   Vadhu for 6 years. Recalls Annup, “I played her son and she became a mother-figure for the entire team. As I got to know her closely—we were working for 16-17 hours together every day—I became more and more fond of her. Surekhaji was well-read and articulate. She could speak several languages fluently including Urdu,  Hindi and English.  And she didn’t enjoy memorizing her dialogues from the script in Roman Hindi. She would write her dialogues in Devnagiri in the spaces on the script and then memorize them. She said she was comfortable with the words only when she wrote them in her own handwriting and in the original Hindi. This is why when she spoke, her words didn’t sound as though they had been written by a  dialogue writer. They sounded  like her own.”

There was one other thing that bonded  Annup with Surekhaji.  “We were both from the National School Of Drama. Of course, she was much senior. When I went to the NSD I  would hear stories, almost like folklore, about actors like Manohar Singh and Surekha Sikri. To actually get to work with her was a dream come true. I had to wait for Balika Vadhu for that privilege. But the wait was worth it. Both Satyajeet Sharma and I who played her sons in the serial spent hours with her. I lived very close to Surekhaji. So after shooting we would drive back together. I’d request her to get  into my car and her car  would follow us.”

Annup was in touch with Surekhaji during the pandemic. “I  would speak to her on the phone, ask her if she needed anything. I knew she was not in need of anything. She was financially sound. She also had a supportive family. But after her life partner Hemant Rege’s death  she preferred to stay alone with only her faithful caregiver who was with her right till the end.”

Annup’s closing thought on the deceased stalwart? “She was so focused on her work right till the end. She enjoyed acting and gave her life to it. During the last six months, her health had begun to fail. But she had a full life and she lived it on her own terms. Not many of us get to do that.”

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