Photo Credit: Aniruddha Gupta


Mumbai: Bhanu Athaiya, who became the first Indian to win an Academy award passed away at home in Mumbai. Her daughter has said that Athaiya passed away peacefully in her sleep on Thursday. Athaiya career spanned over five decades and worked in many prestigious projects as a costume designer. She won the Academy Award for her work in the critically-acclaimed film, ‘Gandhi’ along with John Mollo. The 1983 film about the life of the legendary Indian freedom fighter was directed by Richard Attenborough. Gandhi was played by Ben Kingsley.

Athaiya’s daughter has stated that her mother had been diagnosed with a brain tumour several years ago and had been partially paralysed. The ground-breaking costume designer was bed-ridden at the time of her demise. Along with her work on Oscar-winning ‘Gandhi’ Athaiya had also national accolades for work in the 1991 film ‘Lekin’ and the 2001 fan favourite ‘Lagaan’. Athaiya was born in Kolhapur in the state of Maharashtra in 1929 to Annasaheb and Shantabai Rajopadhye. Athaiya made her debut as a costume designer in the 1956 film C.I.D.