Thousands of heartbroken fans lined the streets of Mumbai on Wednesday as India said farewell to Bollywood legend Sridevi following her shock death from accidental drowning in a Dubai hotel bathtub aged just 54.
Some carried roses while others held photos of the late screen icon as they queued patiently to pay their final respects at a condolence service in the western Indian city.
Legends of Hindi cinema, including director Karan Johar, were among the mourners at the condolence meeting held at Celebration Sports Club in the Andheri West area of Mumbai — the home of the Bollywood film industry.
Heavy security lined the streets to control the crowds, which included people who had travelled hundreds of kilometres to be there. Several fans chanted prayers as Sridevi’s body was brought the short distance from her home to the club at 9:00 am.
She is due to be cremated at a private Hindu ceremony later on Wednesday. Sridevi’s last journey would commence from the club to the crematorium about 7 Km away near Pawan Hans, Vile Parle West States 2pm India time. The last rites will take place from 3.30pm onward
The tragic death of Sridevi, considered to be one of the most influential Bollywood actresses of all time sparked an outpouring of grief in India.
Tributes poured in from fans and fellow actors as well as Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The “Mr India” star drowned in her bathtub after losing consciousness late Saturday in a hotel in Dubai, where she was attending a wedding.
Police in the emirate said a post-mortem examination found that she had drowned after losing consciousness. On Tuesday they ruled out any foul play and released the body to Sridevi’s family.
Her body arrived back in Mumbai on a private jet on Tuesday evening, accompanied by her husband, the filmmaker Boney Kapoor, and her stepson, actor Arjun Kapoor.
More photos below…
Source/photo credit: AP, Viral Bhayani, Indian Frums
Source: Linda Ikeji’s blog