SUCHITRA SEN, one of India’s best known actors, was born on 6 April 1931 in the erstwhile state of Bengal. In a career spanning 25 years, she appeared in 52 Bengali films, forging a memorable onscreen partnership with the actor Uttam Kumar, often playing the feisty heroine to his subdued hero. The two collaborated on 30 films, including hits such as Agni Pariksha (1954), Sagarika (1956) and Saptapadi (1961). Sen also went on to star in seven Hindi productions, perhaps most famously in director Bimal Roy’s Devdas (1955). Sen chose to shun public attention after her retirement in 1978, and in 2005 she turned down the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India’s highest award in cinema, because she didn’t want to travel to Delhi to receive it. She passed away at the age of 82 in Kolkata on 17 January 2014.