Veteran director, producer, screenwriter and author Kalpana Lajmi passed away on Sunday, September 23, in Mumbai. She was 64. Lajmi was diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2017 and was undergoing treatment. According to reports, she breathed her last at 4.30 am.
One of the most prolific directors of Indian cinema, and also a powerful female director, Kalpana Lajmi was known for hard-hitting films like National Film Award-winning films like Rudaali (starring Dimple Kapadia), Daman (starring Raveena Tandon), Chingaari (starring Sushmita Sena and Mithun Chakraborty), and Ek Pal (starring Shabana Azmi, Naseeruddin Shah and Farooque Shaikh).
Just as her films, in real life too, Kalpana Lajmi was known as a fighter and a determined personality. She had also authored a book on her longtime partner, the revered filmmaker and singer-composer Bhupen Hazarika, titled Bhupen Hazarika: As I Knew Him.
Condolences poured in after the death of Kalpana Lajmi, as this news on Sunday morning came as a shocker to Bollywood and especially her friends from the industry. Actresses Huma Qureshi and Soni Razdan are some of the people who tweeted after her death on Sunday morning, as the news spread.
Raveena Tandon, her lead star in Daman, tweeted, "You will be missed Kalpanaji.Was not your time to go..but may your heart now be at peace. Those days while shooting Daman will be a treasured memory. #KalpanaLajmi Om Shanti."
Huma Qureshi said, "Deeply saddened... at around 4:30 am today morning #KalpanaLajmi passed away .. May she rest in peace."
Soni Razdan tweeted, "Our dear beloved friend Kalpana Lajmi has gone to a better place. RIP my darling Kalpana. I shall miss you so terribly."
Our dear beloved friend Kalpana Lajmi has gone to a better place. RIP my darling Kalpan. I shall miss you so terribly.— Soni Razdan (@Soni_Razdan) September 23, 2018
Filmmaker Onir said, "RIP #KalpanaLajmi . My first exposure to a film shooting was while working as a song director and editor in Daman . Remember many evenings of food and music in her residence along with Bhupen Da. Learned a lot while working with her ."
Bollywood celebrities like Aamir Khan, Salman Khan, Karan Johar, Soni Razdan, Alia Bhatt, and Neena Gupta are known to have helped Kalpana Lajmi's treatment financially.
May her soul rest in peace.