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Nutan Samarth Behl (4 June 1936 -- 21 February 1991), better known as Nutan, was an Indian actress.She appeared in more than 70 Hindi films in a career spanning over four decades. Regarded as one of the finest female actors in the history of Hindi cinema.
Nutan's parents separated when she was still a child. At the age of 14 her producer mother got her a role in 'Hamari Beti' during 1950, proving to the world that a gawky and ugly duckling would act better than her looks, and that too barely six years after an offer by Chandulal Shah to get Nutan in his movie 'Nal Damayanti' fell through.
Shortly after the completion of 'Hamari Beti' Nutan was enrolled in La Chatelaine a finishing school in Switzerland. AFter her return, she acted in 3 more movies, before landing a landmark role in 'Seema' in 1955 that established her as a star in her own right.
Nutan was also way ahead of her time, being crowned Miss India in 1951, she went on to become one of the few actresses bold enough to wear a bikini, which she did in 1958 in 'Dilli Ka Thug'. She acted as a child artiste, then as a leading lady, and then in character roles.
On October 11, 1959 she married Lt. Commander Rajish Behl, a boy her mother had chosen for her. A son, Mohnish, was born to them in 1963.
When Nutan found out that her mom had been misappropriating her earnings, she filed a Civil suit and broke off all relationship with her. The relationship with her mom remained strained until Nutan was diagnosed with cancer.
Nutan passed away on February 21, 1991 at the age of 54. Naseebwala and Insaniyat were released in 1992 and 1994 respectively. During her lifetime, she was the recipient of six awards for her performances in Seema, Sujata, Bandini, Milan, Main Tulsi Tere Agan Ki, and Meri Jung.
Her son, Mohnish Behl, continues to act in Bollywood movies in a variety of villainous and character roles.