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Published on 27 Aug 2012 | over 4 years ago

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Sadhana (2 September 1941 – 25 December 2015) is an Indian Bollywood actress who was one of the top stars in the 1960s and the early 1970s. Beside becoming the fashion icon for young Indian girls with her specific hair style, still known as "Sadhana cut", she became famous as Mystery Girl with her three suspense thriller films namely Woh Kaun Thi? (1964), Mera Saaya (1966) and Anita (1967), all directed by Raj Khosla.

Born in a Sindhi family in Karachi, Pakistan (then India), Shivdasani was named after her father's favorite actress-dancer Sadhana Bose. Her father was the brother of actor Hari Shivdasani. Sadhana is a cousin of the actress Babita, who is the daughter of actor Hari Shivdasani and mother of actresses Karisma & Kareena Kapoor.

The family fled from Karachi during the post-partition riots and settled in Bombay. Her mother home-schooled her until she was 8 years old and she later on did her schooling from Auxilium Convent, Wadala and further education from Jai Hind College.

Sadhana aspired to be an actress from childhood. Her father helped her enter films. In 1955 she played a chorus girl in the song "Eechak Dana Beechak Dana" in Raj Kapoor's Shree 420. When she was 15 years old, she was discovered by some producers who had seen her act in a college play. They cast her in India's first Sindhi film titled Abana (1958), where she played the role of actress Sheila Ramani's younger sister. She was paid a token amount of 1 rupee. A photograph of her publicizing the film appeared in a movie magazine Screen. It was then that Sashadhar Mukherjee, one of cinema's major producers at that time, noticed her. She joined Mukherjee's acting school along with her debutant co-star Joy Mukherjee, who is Sashadhar's son. R.K. Nayyar, who had previously worked as assistant director on few films, directed this film. He also created her trademark look called "Sadhana cut" inspired from Hollywood actress Audrey Hepburn. The Filmalaya Production banner thus introduced Joy, Sadhana and her iconic hairstyle "Sadhana cut" in their 1960's romantic film Love in Simla. The film was declared as "Hit" on the box office and was enlisted in top 10 films of 1960.
Sadhana had a health problem with her thyroid, which she got treated at a hospital in Boston in the US. After returning from the US, she starred in successful movies Intaquam (1969), Ek Phool Do Mali (1969), and Geeta Mera Naam(1974), which she also directed.

Sadhana married her Love in Simla's director Ram Krishna Nayyar on 6 March 1966. Their love blossomed on the film set. But as she was very young then, her parents opposed it. She was married to him for nearly thirty years, till his death in 1995 from asthama. She has no children.

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