Beauty queen-turned-actress Leela Naidu died July 28 in Mumbai following a long illness.
Although she only acted in 10 films, including Merchant Ivory’s “The Householder” (1963), she left an imprint on Bollywood.
Born of an Irish mother and Indian father, Naidu won the Miss India beauty pageant in 1954 and was named one of Vogue’s 10 most beautiful women.
Her first pic was Hrishkesh Mukherjee’s “Anuradha,” which competed in the Berlin fest in 1961, with music by Ravi Shankar. But her most famous role was as the adulterous wife in 1963’s “Yeh raaste hain pyaar ke,” based on a real-life case.
After acting in a few disappointments she left the film biz, but made a comeback in arthouse director Shyam Benegal’s “Trikaal” in 1985. Her last film was 1992’s “Electric Moon.”
She married and divorced hotel heir Bikki Oberoi and then poet Dom Moraes, who died in 2004.