Why is the veteran actress Zohra Sehgal struggling for a home?

The 101 year old stage and film actress Zohra Sehgal has been requesting the Delhi urban authorities to allot her a house under the artiste quota for years now; she has been asking for a house on the ground floor, because of her age. Even after three years, she hasn’t been allotted a house yet and is still living with her daughter Kiran Sehgal in South Delhi’s Mandakini Enclave.

Kiran told a leading daily, “We applied to the then chief minister Sheila Dixit asking her to allot a house to my mother as per the provisions under the artiste quota. We were told our application was forwarded to the Urban Development Ministry. We even met the minister but nothing was done. I cannot take her (Zohra) down to the lawn and she needs to be wheeled around.”

Saying they will now approach Kejriwal, she added, “As per the regulations of the Ministry of Culture, I filled up forms and even submitted an audit report on my mother’s earnings. She has not worked in a film after Saawariya (2007). But so far, there has been no progress on this front.”

The Bollywood fraternity also reacted to this. Om Puri said “Zohra Sehgal is entitled to at least a temporary accommodation in a ground floor apartment.”

The veteran film-maker Mukesh Bhatt said “Zohra Sehgal has dedicated her entire life to theatre and cinema. The fact that she hasn’t got a house yet only reflects the psyche of the people in power. The government is clearly insensitive and inconsiderate towards veteran artistes.”

She was also seen as Amitabh Bachchan’s mother in the 2006 film Cheeni Kum.

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