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Tabassum Age, Death, Husband, Children, Family, Biography & More

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Age: 78 Years
Husband: Vijay Govil
Death Date: 18/11/2022

Tabassum

Bio/Wiki
Other nameKiran Bala Sachdev [1]News 18
Full nameTabassum Govil [2]Instagram- Tabassum Govil
NicknamePapa [3]Rediff

Note: The name was given to her by Vyjayanthimala when Tabassum was a child as at some places in South India children are called 'Papa.'
Profession(s)Actor, TV Host, YouTuber
Famous ForBeing the host of the first Indian TV talk show ‘Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan’ (1972-1993) aired on Doordarshan
Famous AsBaby Tabassum [4]Twitter- Tabassum
Physical Stats & More
Height (approx.)in centimeters- 158 cm
in meters- 1.58 m
in feet & inches- 5’ 2”
Eye ColourBrown
Hair ColourBlack
Career
DebutFilm (Hindi; As a child actor): Nargis (1946) in a cameo role
Tabassum as a child actor in her debut film 'Nargis' (1947)
TV (Hindi; As a lead actor): ‘Zimbo Ka Beta’ or Zimbo Finds A Son (1966) as Leela
Tabassum as Leela in ‘Zimbo Ka Beta’
Film (Gujarati; As a lead actor): Upar Gagan Vishal (1971)
Upar Gagan Vishal (1971)
TV (Hindi; As a host): Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan (1972-1993) aired on Doordarshan
Tabassum in India's first TV talk show 'Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan'
Personal Life
Date of Birth9 July 1944 (Sunday)
BirthplaceBombay, Bombay Presidency, British India (now Mumbai, Maharashtra)
Date of Death18 November 2022
Place of DeathShe died in a hospital in Mumbai.
Age (at the time of death) 78 Years
Death CauseCardiac arrest [5]NDTV
Zodiac signCancer
AutographTabassum's autograph
NationalityIndian
HometownMumbai, Maharashtra
SchoolAnjuman-I-Islam's Saif Tyabji Girls' High School and Junior College of Arts and Science, Mumbai (upto class 10)
College/UniversityAligarh Muslim University, Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh
Educational QualificationBachelor of Arts [6]YouTube- Tabassum Talkies
Religious ViewsDuring an interview, while talking about her religion, she said,
"I am neither Hindu nor Muslim. I am a human being. Whenever I am asked my religion on a form, I write humanity.” [7]Rediff
Relationships & More
Marital StatusMarried
Marriage Date1 March
Family
Husband/SpouseVijay Govil (actor and director)
Tabassum with her husband
ChildrenSon- Hoshang Govil (actor and film director)
Tabassum with her son
ParentsFather- Ayodhyanath Sachdev (Journalist and Indian freedom fighter; acquaintance of Bhagat Singh)
Mother- Asghari Begum (Indian freedom fighter, journalist, and author)
Tabassum with her parents
SiblingsShe had two elder brothers and one elder sister. One of her brothers’ names is Jagit.
Tabassum with her brother and sister-in-law
Other Relative(s)Brother-in-law: Arun Govil (actor)
Tabassum with her brother-in-law
Daughter-in-law: Hemali Govil (podcaster)
Tabassum with her son and daughter-in-law
Granddaughter(s): Krishna and Khushi
Tabassum and her granddaughter Karishma

Tabassum

Some Lesser Known Facts About Tabassum

  • Tabassum was a veteran Indian TV host, actress, and YouTuber. From 1972 to 1993, she hosted the popular TV talk show ‘Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan,’ which was broadcasted on Doordarshan.
  • Her parents worked as a journalist for the newspaper ‘Tej’ in Delhi. Later, they were transferred to Mumbai where Tabassum’s mother started a magazine ‘Tanveer Monthly’ in association with Abdul Hamid Ansari (father of Khalid Ansari, businessman and journalist). Later, Tabassum’s mother taught Urdu to Govinda’s father Arun Ahuja.
  • During an interview, Tabassum shared that her parents kept her two names. She said,

    My father named me Tabassum, keeping my mother’s religious sentiments in mind. My mother kept my name Kiran Bala, keeping my father’s religious sentiments in mind. My name on all official documents was Kiran Bala Sachdev. After marriage, it became Kiran Bala Govil.”

  • She started her career as a child actor at the age of 3. In 1946, she got an offer for the Hindi film ‘Nargis,’ and she signed the contract for the film for Rs 5000. [8]Rediff Soon after the film was released, she started getting recognition as Baby Tabassum. During an interview, while sharing how she stepped into acting, Tabassum said,

    Famous Pictures was making a film called Nargis, starring Nargis. The film’s music composer, Rajendra Krishen, and O P Dutta (filmmaker J P Dutta’s father) were my father’s friends. They told my father that I should get into acting as I was very smart and there was a role for a child artiste in Nargis. My parents first said no because, those days, it was considered bad to work in films. The World War II was on, paper had become very expensive and my mother’s magazine was about to shut because of shortage of paper. That’s when someone suggested I be allowed to take up the Nargis offer.”

    A childhood picture of Tabassum

    A childhood picture of Tabassum

  • In 1947, she appeared as a child actor in the Hindi film ‘Mera Suhaag.’
  • Tabassum then received an offer to act in the Hindi film ‘Manjhdhar,’ but her mother rejected it. In an interview, while talking about it Tabassum said,

    In 1947, filmmaker Sohrab Modi came to our house. He was making a film called Majhdhaar with Surendra Nath and Khursheed. He wanted me in it as a child artiste. My mother said they didn’t want me to act in films any more. Rajendra Krishen and O P Dutta told my mother that it wasn’t good to say no to a film straightaway, as people may take that as an insult. You ask for more money and they themselves will go away. So my parents decided to ask for Rs 10,000. Modi said he would give Rs 12,000 and made a contract. I was four years old then. The film was a flop but I got great reviews. Some reviews mentioned that the older actors should learn Urdu diction from four-year-old Baby Tabassum. By the time I was 10 years old, I earned Rs 7 to 8 lakh per film. But the sad part is that most of the money never came in, and my balance is still outstanding.”

  • When she was 4 years old, she hosted a radio show ‘Phulwari’ for children. The show was aired on All India Radio. She used to crack jokes, sing songs, and interact with children on the show. Her photo was even published in the All India Radio monthly magazine’s January 1948 issue.

    The Indian Listener magazine of AIR

    The Indian Listener magazine of AIR

  • She gained immense popularity as a child actor by her performance in various Hindi films such as ‘Bari Behen’ (1949), ‘Sangram’ (1950), ‘Afsana’ (1951), ‘Bahar’ (1951), and ‘Baiju Bawra’ (1952).

    Tabassum as a child actor in Afsana (1951)

    Tabassum as a child actor in Afsana (1951)

  • In the 1951 Hindi film ‘Deedar,’ a song titled “Bachpan Ke Din Bhoolana Dena” was picturised on Tabassum and Parikshit Sahni, which became very popular.

    Tabassum along with Shashi Kapoor as child actors in the Hindi film 'Sangram' (1950)

    Tabassum along with Shashi Kapoor as child actors in the Hindi film ‘Sangram’ (1950)

  •  While she was working as a child actor, her parents used to accompany her to the sets of films. In an interview, she revealed that once the Indian actress Madhubala advised her not to bring her parents to the film sets. She said,

    Madhubala once told me ‘Tabassum, as long as you have parents with you on the set, you will never be able to become a top heroine.’ Madhubala also advised me never to return to films. She said Don’t ever return to films after marriage. This red mitti (makeup) addiction is very bad. It is like wine. Youth and career are temporary. Your personal life is the destination.”

  • As a child actor, her last Hindi film was ‘Baap Beti’ (1954).

    Baap-Beti (1952)

    Baap-Beti (1952)

  • After a few years, Tabassum started appearing as a lead actor in films. She then acted in Hindi films like ‘Ganwaar’ (1970), ‘Heer Raanjha’ (1970), ‘Johny Mera Naam’ (1970), ‘Gambler’ (1971), ‘Shaadi Ke Baad’ (1972), and ‘Maa Bahen Aur Biwi’ (1974). Unlike her films as a child actor, her films as a lead actor failed to do well at the box office.

    Gambler film poster

    Gambler film poster

  • In 1972, she started hosting the popular TV talk show ‘Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan’ with which she gained immense popularity. In an interview, she shared that initially the show was being named Guldasta. She said,

    While DD wanted to name the show Guldasta, I didn’t find it appealing. I chose a couplet called Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan from Begum Akhtar’s ghazal instead and ended up sporting a flower in her hair on the show. It became her style statement. Doordarshan (DD) wanted a show that would have music and dance performances, and 10-minute interviews with celebrities. The show’s makers applauded my style of interviewing, jokes and shayari. They realised that this was a novel concept, as viewers hadn’t seen interviews on TV in the 1970s.”

    She further shared that even though she got less remuneration for the TV show, she continued doing it because of the immense love of her fans. She said,

    I was getting paid peanuts, and people told me that I was being taken advantage of. You will be shocked to know that Doodarshan paid me Rs 70 per show. When the show ended 21 years, I was being paid Rs 750. Ameen Sayani and I S Johar told me I was being exploited. But I wanted to do the show because it had made a household name. I stayed back just because of that greed. But when the younger generation was asked to do shows in the same format, they were paid in thousands. It hurt me and I left. I did TV hoping to earn good money, which didn’t happen. But I got a lot of respect and fame.”

    A throwback picture of Tabassum lying down with her fan mails from the years when she hosted Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan

    A throwback picture of Tabassum lying down with her fan mails from the years when she hosted Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan

  • In 1970, she worked as an RJ on the TV show ‘Saridon Ke Saathi’ with former Indian radio announcer Ameen Sayani.
  • Tabassum then hosted ‘Maratha Darbar Ki Mehkti Batein,’ a comedy radio show.
  • She worked as an editor for the Hindi women’s magazine ‘Grihalakshmi’ for almost 15 years.
  • In 1985, she worked as a director, producer, and scriptwriter for the Hindi film ‘Tum Par Hum Qurban.’ His son was cast in the film, but the film failed to do well at the box office.
  • Tabassum worked as a director in the 1987 Hindi film ‘Kartoot,’ but the film got shelved.
  • She penned down more than 10 books on jokes and Urdu Shayaris.
  • She performed in the stage show ‘Tabassum Hit Parade.’
  • She then made a cameo appearance in Hindi films like ‘Sur Sangam’ (1985), ‘Naache Mayuri’ (1986), ‘Chameli Ki Shaadi’ (1986), ‘Swarg’ (1990).

    Tabassum in Chameli Ki Shaadi

    Tabassum in Chameli Ki Shaadi

  • After completing her shoot for her shelved Hindi film ‘Janana Mujhse Door’ (1995), she left working as an actor in Hindi films. During an interview, while talking about her failed films, she said,

    My parents decided that I was not getting interesting roles. I was a very big child artiste but, as a grown-up, I could not achieve any success. So I was married off.”

  • Tabassum appeared in a few Hindi TV serials such as ‘Pyaar Ke Do Naam: Ek Raadha, Ek Shyaam’ (2006), and ‘Ladies Special’ (2009).

    Tabassum in Pyaar Ke Do Naam- Ek Raadha, Ek Shyaam

    Tabassum in Pyaar Ke Do Naam- Ek Raadha, Ek Shyaam

  • She hosted a TV show ‘Abhi Toh Main Jawaan Hoon’ aired on TV Asia USA and Canada. The show depicted the Golden Era of Hindi Cinema.

    Tabassum in Abhi Toh Main Jawaan Hoon

    Tabassum in Abhi Toh Main Jawaan Hoon

  • She hosted a devotional TV show ‘Bhakti Main Masti, Tabassum Bhajan Sandhya.’
  • In 2016, she started uploading interviews of veteran actors on her YouTube channel ‘Tabassum Talkies.’ She has around 737k subscribers on her YouTube channel as of September 2022.

    Tabassum's YouTube channel 'Tabassum Talkies'

    Tabassum’s YouTube channel ‘Tabassum Talkies’

  • Tabassum won many awards for her acting skills and for hosting various talk shows.

    Tabassum with her awards

    Tabassum with her awards

  • She was invited as a guest speaker at various stage shows and events.

    Tabassum as a guest speaker at an event

    Tabassum as a guest speaker at an event

  • She was featured on various magazine covers.

    Tabassum featured on a magazine cover

    Tabassum featured on a magazine cover

  • In an interview, Tabassum shared that she had helped many Indian celebrities in making their debut in Bollywood. She said that she once spotted Johnny Lever performing at one of her stage shows and introduced him to Bollywood. She said,

    I met Johnny Lever while I was doing a show in Shanmukhananda Hall in Mumbai. My manager saw him performing on the street and brought him in. I haven’t seen a man as talented as Johnny Lever.”

    An old photo of Tabassum with Johnny Lever

    An old photo of Tabassum with Johnny Lever

    She further said that even Sunidhi Chauhan was spotted by her. She said,

    Sunidhi Chauhan is also my discovery. I was doing a show in Delhi and she asked for me permission to sing on stage. I told her that it can’t be done and she had to meet my manager. But she insisted. When I went to the washroom during a break in the show, she followed me and said, ‘Listen to my song’ and immediately started singing. I was quite amused. But I let her sing on stage. She sang so well. I told her father to get her to Mumbai and work in Bollywood. I even gave him my home address.”

    She then invited Sunidhi and her father to her home and asked them to meet the Indian musician Kalyan. She said,

    They came to my house the same day that Babul Supriyo had come. I told Sunidhi’s father that if she sings in my stage show, it will not benefit her career. I told him to go to Kalyanji’s office and say I had sent him. I called Kalyanji and told him I was sending him a birthday present — it was his birthday that day. The rest is history.”

    An old photo of Tabassum with Sunidhi Chauhan and Sadhana Sargam

    An old photo of Tabassum with Sunidhi Chauhan and Sadhana Sargam

  • During an interview, Tabassum said that once the Indian actor Amitabh Bachchan saved her life. She said,

    I was sitting in a wheelchair and conducting the show as my leg was fractured. Suddenly there was a fire and that caused a stampede. ‘I started shouting for help. Nobody responded. They were all running for their lives. Then Amitji came…’

    Tabassum with Amitabh Bachchan

    Tabassum with Amitabh Bachchan

  • In one of her Instagram posts, she shared that since her teens, she practised yoga.

    A collage of Tabassum doing yoga

    A collage of Tabassum doing yoga

  • In 2021, when she was hospitalised after testing positive for COVID-19, the rumours of her death spread in the media. Later, she cleared the rumours through her social media account. [9]The Times of India
  • On 18 November 2022, she died of cardiac arrest at a hospital in Mumbai, where she had been undergoing treatment for a gastro problem. [10]NDTV