mithun shettywrote on Jun 10 2009 12:14PM
Priya Tendulkar was an actress, social activist and a writer of Marathi origin, who is most known for her role in the television series Rajani.Priya was inclined towards art and culture from her childhood as her father was the eminent popular writer Vijay Tendulkar. Her first appearance was as a doll in a stage play called Haya Vadan (1969) along with Kalpana Lajmi. Later she shuffled between different jobs as a hotel service receptionist in a 5 star hotel, an air hostess, and a part time model.
Her debut film appearance was in Shyam Benegal's Ankur (1974)where she played Anant Nag's submissive wife. Thereafter she switched her interest towards Marathi films and played stellar roles in nearly a dozen Marathi family socials, opposite actors like Ashok Saraf, Ravindra Mahajan and Mahesh Kothare.
She rose to national fame with her TV series Rajani (1985) where she played a housewife who can't stand any injustice and solves public social issues. Her portrayal of Rajani made her a household name all over India. Later she played another feminist role in Gulzar's TV series, Swayamsiddha.
She married her Rajani co-star, Karan Razdan, in 1988 but separated from him in 1995. Priya led a freestyle life wherein she spoke about social issues openly without fear and always expressed her feelings without a bias or prejudice.This side of her fiery personality reflected in her talk shows like Priya Tendulkar Talk Show and Zimmedar Kaun.
She was occasionally seen in Bollywood films like Mohra, Trimurti, and Gupt, in roles playing a mother.Priya was suffering from cancer and led a dignified life fighting the disease and continuing her fight against injustice till her very end.She died on September 19, 2002 and is still remembered as the fiery socially active and politically aware 'Rajani.