Saroj Khan Funeral: Bollywood's 'masterji' laid to rest as family bids adieu

Updated: Jul 03, 2020, 14:19 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

Bollywood's ace choreographer Saroj Khan passed away of a cardiac arrest on July 3 in Mumbai. Her funeral was held at Marve Kabrastan in Malad.

Saroj Khan's Family members pay respects at her funeral at Marve Kabrastan in Malad, Mumbai.
Saroj Khan's Family members pay respects at her funeral at Marve Kabrastan in Malad, Mumbai.

The Hindi film industry woke up to yet another shocking news today as Bollywood ace choreographer Saroj Khan passed away due to cardiac arrest on Friday (July 3). She was 71. Saroj Khan was admitted to Guru Nanak Hospital in Bandra, and over the past few weeks, she had been experiencing multiple health issues. She was diabetic and had complained of breathing problems last month.

Saroj Khan breathed her last at around 1.30 am, family sources told IANS. Bollywood celebrities took to social media to mourn the tragic loss of their 'masterji' as she was fondly called. From her favourite student, Madhuri Dixit Nene, to Shilpa Shetty Kundra and other stars offered their condolences to the family.

Saroj Khan's funeral at Malad Marve Kabrastan
Saroj Khan's funeral was held at Marve Kabrastan in Malad, Mumbai

Saroj Khan's funeral was held at Malad Marve Kabrastan earlier today. The last rites were performed at Malad burial ground. Few members of her family were allowed at the burial owing to social distancing norms.

Saroj Khan's funeral at Malad Marve Kabrastan

Saroj Khan won the National Award thrice in her lifetime. In 2003, she received the honour for the song 'Dola re dola' in Devdas, picturised on Madhuri Dixit-Nene and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. In 2006, she was a recipient of the award for all the songs she choreographed in the Tamil film, Sringaram. In 2008, she won the award for the song 'Yeh ishq haaye' filmed on Kareena Kapoor Khan in Jab We Met.

Saroj Khan started out in the early seventies, but she became a household name in the mid to late eighties, first directing some memorable dances for Sridevi and then Madhuri Dixit, the reigning superstars of the era. Khan started out choreographing with the 1974 film, Geeta Mera Naam.

Also read: Amitabh Bachchan remembers Saroj Khan and the one rupee coin she gave as 'shagun'

It was the 1986 film Nagina that made her a household name. Sridevi's iconic dance 'Main naagin tu sapera' in that film continues to be a popular number even today. Her choreography for Sridevi the next year in Mr India, particularly the song 'Hawaa hawaai' then scaled popularity. Khan has also given Madhuri Dixit some of her most iconic hits including 'Ek do teen' (Tezaab), and 'Dhak dhak' (Beta) among numerous others.

Khan's recent works include choreographing Kangana Ranaut in Manikarnika in 2019 and Tanu Weds Manu Returns in 2015. Her last major assignment was directing Madhuri's moves in last year's release, Kalank.

Also read: Saroj Khan passes away: These throwback pictures from her Instagram will make you feel nostalgic

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    Born on November 22, 1948, Saroj Khan's birth name was Nirmala Nagpal. She started out in films at the age of three as a child actor before a stint as a backup dancer in the fifties. (All pictures/Saroj Khan's official Instagram account)

  • 2/17

    One of the most prolific choreographers of the Hindi film industry, Saroj Khan was fondly called Masterji in Bollywood. The ace choreographer had called the shots in over 2,000 songs spanning over three and a half decades.

  • 3/17

    As a choreographer, Saroj Khan started her journey in the film industry in the early seventies. But she became a household name and gained immense popularity in the mid to late eighties, first directing dances for Sridevi, and then Madhuri Dixit.

    In picture: On Madhuri Dixit's birthday, Saroj Khan posted this picture of her teaching 'Choli Ke Piche Kya Hai' dance steps to the actress. "Happy birthday M.D, my inspiration. You are my love for dancing. God give you a long long long life, his blessing should always be on you, God give you good health and keep you wealthy. God bless your children and Dr. Nene. Lots of love, Master Ji," she wrote in the caption.

  • 4/17

    Saroj Khan started out choreographing with the 1974 film, Geeta Mera Naam. She directed songs for the Tamil film Thai Veedu in 1983, and also worked in Subhash Ghai's superhit Hero the same year.

  • 5/17

    However, it was the 1986 film Nagina that made Saroj Khan a household name. Sridevi's iconic dance 'Main naagin tu sapera' in that film continues to be a popular number even today.

  • 6/17

    Saroj Khan's choreography for Sridevi the next year in Mr India, particularly the song Hawaa Hawaii then scaled popularity.

  • 7/17

    Saroj Khan won the National Award thrice in her lifetime. In 2003, she received the honour for the song 'Dola re dola' in Devdas, picturised on Madhuri Dixit and Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan.

  • 8/17

    In 2006, Saroj Khan was a recipient of the award for all the songs she choreographed in the Tamil film, Sringaram.

  • 9/17

    In 2008, she won the award for the song 'Yeh Ishq Haaye' filmed on Kareena Kapoor in Jab We Met.

  • 10/17

    Lately, Saroj Khan had been selective with signing new projects. Her recent works include choreographing Kangana Ranaut in Manikarnika and Madhuri Dixit in Kalank last year.

  • 11/17

    Over the past few weeks, Saroj Khan, who was diabetic, had complained of breathing problems, following which she was admitted to Mumbai's Guru Nanak Hospital. Since last month, she had been experiencing multiple health issues, though she had tested negative for COVID-19.

    In picture: Saroj Khan had shared this picture of Rekha and wrote in the caption, "#majorthrowback to Rekha ji's World Tour Show '99 with my daughter @sukainanagpal"

  • 12/17

    After a cardiac arrest on Thursday night, Saroj Khan passed away. She is survived by her husband, son and two daughters.

  • 13/17

    A look at some candid pictures of Saroj Khan, during her younger days:

    Saroj Khan with Sanjay Dutt

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    Saroj Khan with Ranbir Kapoor on the sets of Saawariya, which marked the actor's debut in Bollywood.

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    Saroj Khan with Aishwarya Rai in the 90s

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    Saroj Khan with megastar Amitabh Bachchan

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    Saroj Khan with Preity Zinta

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