Be it the silver screen or the red carpet, call her Hawa Hawai or Chandni, this ‘khwabon ki shehzaadi’ will always be ‘har dil pe chhayi’ and continue to reign our hearts till eternity. A mere glimpse of her would make heads turn and she is still afresh in our minds. India’s first female superstar, Sridevi was, is and will always be one of the most iconic and legendary actresses of B-town.
But Sridevi was not only an actress par excellence, she was also a loving wife, doting mother and an equally warm Kapoor khandaan’s bahu. On August 13, 2018, i.e. Sridevi’s 55th birth anniversary, we couldn’t help but walk down the memory lane and dig in some unseen throwback pictures of her with her husband, children and family.
After a formal proposal in 1993 and then taking years to realise that Boney Kapoor is the man she is destined to be with, Sridevi married her Mr India producer on June 2, 1996. Despite the odds against them, Sridevi and Boney made one happy couple, and she was his wife and life both. But unfortunately, their love tale lasted till February 24, 2018, when Sridevi took her last breath. After the last rites of Sridevi, Boney tweeted:
“Losing a friend, wife and mother of your two daughters is a loss inexplicable in words... I am blessed to have the support and love of Arjun and Anshula, who have been such pillars of strength for myself, Khushi and Janhvi. Together, as a family, we have tried to face this unbearable loss. To the world, she was their Chandni... the actor par excellence... their Sridevi... but to me, she was my love, my friend, mother to our girls... my partner. To our daughters, she was their everything... their life. She was the axis around which our family ran." It further stated, “As we bid goodbye to my beloved wife and Khushi & Janhvi’s mama, I have a sincere request. Please respect our need to grieve privately. If you need to talk of Sri, let it be of the special memories that connect each of you to her. She was and is an actor that is irreplaceable. Love and respect her for that. My only concern at this time is to protect my daughters and find a way to move forward without Sri. She was our life, our strength and the reason we always smiled. We love her beyond measure. Rest in peace my love. Our lives will never be the same again.”
In an earlier interview, Sridevi revealed what made her fall in love with Boney Kapoor. She was quoted as saying:
"I fell in love with him when I got to know the real him. It was difficult, traumatic even and it took me many years to finally accept the fact that I was destined to be with Boney. In hindsight, I only wish that I had realised and accepted his love for me sooner. I always believe in following my heart and I am glad that I did. My parents had passed away by then and my sister was shocked with my decision. But now, she shares a great relationship with my husband and is convinced that he is the best thing that ever happened to me!"
In another interview, she stated:
“I am not the least embarrassed or apologetic about my dependence on Boneyji. He is my lifeline. He looks after every little detail in my life. I can’t imagine what life would be without him.”
Even her husband, Boney was so much in love with her, that he was once stated in an interview:
“If I was Shah Jahan I would have built her a Taj Mahal. If I were a painter, I would have made her a beautiful painting. But, I make movies. Hence, I don't know a better way than the gift of films for her.”
Sridevi and Boney Kapoor are blessed with two angels, Janhvi Kapoor and Khushi Kapoor. While Janhvi has already made her way into the industry, Khushi is gearing up to take forward her mother’s legacy. Janhvi and Khushi are their mother’s parchaayi, and as glamorous as, their mother. In a throwback interview, Sridevi talked about her daughters and shared:
"Janhvi, I feel is more like me - absolutely obedient. Both my children are extremely attached to us. Janhvi seeks more attention from me while Khushi can manage things on her own. Though Janhvi's grown up now, sometimes I still have to feed her. She won't eat properly at certain times, so I have to make sure that she eats properly. Sometimes she tells me to put her to sleep so all these nakhras she does. Khushi has always been a very independent person right since childhood."
Speaking about the relationship with her mom, Janhvi expressed in an interview:
"Of course. I could always be the baby with her. When I’d wake up, the first thing I’d do was ask for her. I’d need her to put me to sleep sometimes and she literally had to feed me. The day before she left for the wedding, I had to shoot, but I couldn’t sleep, so I was like, “I need you to come and put me to sleep.” But she was packing, so by the time she came to me I was half asleep. But I could feel her patting my head. I’ve always been very bad at that. Khushi is very maternal with me. I am a full baby. She takes care of me. Now she comes and puts me to sleep sometimes."
After the unfortunate demise of her mother, Janhvi penned down an emotional note for her and wrote:
“There is a gnawing hollowness in my chest that I know I’ll have to learn how to live with. Even with all this emptiness, I still feel your love. I feel you protecting me from sadness and pain. Every time I close my eyes, I only have good things to remember. I know it’s you doing that. You were a blessing in all our lives, we were blessed to have had you for as long as we did. But you weren’t meant for this world. You were too good, too pure, too full of love. That’s why he took you back. But at least we had you. My friends always said I’m perpetually happy, and now I realise it was because of you. Nothing anyone said mattered, no problem was big enough, and no day could ever be dull because I had you. And you loved me. And I didn’t have to rely on anyone or anything because the only person I ever needed was you. You are a part of my soul. My best friend. My reason for everything. Your whole life you kept giving, and all I wanted was to do that for you too, Mumma. I want to make you so proud. Every morning, all that I would do was with the hope that one day you’d be as proud of me as I was of you. But I promise I’ll wake up every day still with that same thought. Because you’re here and I can feel you. You’re in me, Khushi and in Papa. The imprint you’ve left on us is so strong, it might just be enough to keep us going, but never enough to be fully whole. I love you, my everything.”
About the immense support, her family gave her in this tough phase, Janhvi mentioned:
“Touchwood! My family gives me strength and courage. (Pauses)… I get emotional when I talk about them. Khushi and I are very different. I am the kid in our family, and everyone treats her as the more responsible and independent one. I am the one that needs to be babied, and my mom shared that equation with me. She liked to baby me, as she knew that Khushi was too independent. I would tell her… mamma khana chahiye, mamma ni-ni nahin aa rahi hai. I am still like that, and now Khushi and papa have stepped into that role. My whole family has supported me so much; I want to really make them proud.”
Sridevi used to have the best of time when she was around her family. Be it holidays and vacations or any B-town event, Sridevi could be seen accompanied by her daughter, Janhvi and Khushi. Sridevi passed away after attending the wedding celebrations of Boney Kapoor's nephew, Mohit Marwah in Dubai, which put the whole Kapoor clan in shock. Sridevi’s million-dollar smile whenever she was with her family, will always be missed.
A joint statement was also released on behalf of the Kapoor, Ayyappan and Marwah family, on February 28, 2018. It could be read as:
“The past few days have been trying times for us as a family. Today, particularly, has been one of the hardest. We laid to rest a beautiful soul who has gone too soon. She leaves behind a legacy that is unique. Her talent was undeniable, her beauty unmatched and her ability to connect with the audience was legendary. Sri had the same connect with her family as well. The one thing that helped us all get through these last few days, was the amazing amount of love and support from everyone — be it her many colleagues, to her innumerable fans, her caring friends and loving family, from across the country and the world. This outpouring of love is the memory that we would like Khushi and Janhvi to have of their mother... a woman who was loved unquestionably by everyone. Let us all who loved Sri, envelope her two little ones, her life, as she often called them, with as much or more love than we gave Sri so that they can live their lives ahead with a little less ache in their hearts. Let us help them remember their mother fondly, with that beloved twinkle in her eyes, and help them build a life and be what Sri had dreamt for them. To the members of the media, we ask that you respect the privacy of the family and allow us the space to grieve. Sri lived her life with dignity and we implore, that you give her the same respect.”
We miss you, Sridevi Kapoor! You will stay with us and inspire us forever!