PESHAWAR: Award-winning actor Safia Rani passed away on Friday, leaving behind two sons, a daughter and a 30-year-long acting career. She was 65.
Her brother Ameer Khan said Rani had been suffering from liver cancer for the past five years. Her funeral prayers were offered at Kakshal graveyard at 5pm where a large number of artists and fans came to honour the queen of Hindko drama.
A versatile actress hailing from Ganj area of Peshawar, Rani had performed in nearly 500 Hindko, Urdu and Pashto television series in Peshawar, Karachi, Islamabad and Lahore. She also worked on various radio and stage shows during her career and was the recipient of the Pride of Performance award among other accolades.
She was popular for her Pashto dramas Angar, Khapoona and Jaal, while Manzil and Barish were her famous Urdu serials. Her leading Hindko television dramas include Dusri Dastak, Rait te Rasty, Parchol, Dekh da janda ray and Ka be bhol pa ye, for which she would always be remembered by her fans. She also produced two dramas in Peshawar.
Salahuddin, a senior drama artist, told The Express Tribune he had worked with Rani for years. “She worked with unparalleled passion and integrity. She was a brilliant, compassionate and noble woman who will profoundly be missed by her fans.”
Salahuddin added that Safia’s illness had taken her away from television, but she recovered soon and made a comeback. “She will never come back now. She has left her fans grieving and will always be missed,” he added.
Her brother Khan broke the news of her tragic death and said her doctors had long before given up hope for her recovery. He added her fight with cancer was not easy.
She faced many difficulties during her illness and never received the respect and honour she deserved, he said. “If Safia went through this, one can imagine what lesser-known actors go through.”
Published in The Express Tribune, April 27th, 2013.