Vyjayantimala was in Mumbai few days ago and it was a pleasure when she kept her promise to Saira and dropped in on a Sunday. Between her and Saira, who now addresses her as ‘Akka’ (elder sister in Tamil) there is an understanding that she will not skip visiting us when she is in the city and if she does she will have to pay a fine of one lakh rupees! They have their own mutual bonding and Saira has great respect for Vyjayanti as a dancer and actress.
It was a wonderful afternoon at our home when Vyjayanti met Saira’s grandniece Sayesha who is learning Kathak and Oddissi from renowned gurus and is blossoming into a beauty like her aunt and of course her grandmother Naseem Banu.
As always we reminisced the days when we worked together in such memorable films as Devdas, Ganga Jamuna, Madhumati and Naya Daur. Actually we have a tally of seven films (if I am not mistaken) together and each had its significance for film lovers. Among my heroines she was the one who worked as hard and as diligently as I did on the scenes and dialogue. Especially Ganga Jamuna in which she had to speak a mixed dialect of Bihar with ease and familiarity. Being a South Indian she had wrinkled her brow at first when she heard me speak the language but her characteristic determination came to the fore and she delivered her lines with admirable confidence .It does not surprise me at all that she still gives Bharata Natyam recitals of two hours duration in Chennai. That’s her spirit and grit!