Rehana Sultan

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Rehana Sultan
Born (1950-11-19) November 19, 1950 (age 64)
Allahabad, India
Occupation actor
Spouse(s) B.R. Ishara

Rehana Sultan, (born 19 November c.1950[1]) is an Indian film actress best known for her debut role in the acclaimed 1970 film Dastak which won her the National Film Award for Best Actress. A graduate of Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune, she is also known for another bold role in the film Chetna (1970), which got her typecast thus ending her film career, despite its promising start.[2][3]


Born and raised in Allahabad to Bahá'í parents, she graduated from the High School in 1967, and got selected in the same year to study acting at FTII.[4] After she graduated with a sexy role in Vishwanath Ayengar's diploma film Shadi Ki Pehli Salgirah (1967),[5] she got her break in a feature film in Rajinder Singh Bedi's Dastak (1970), making her the first actress from the Institute to land a lead role in the film industry.[6][7] She won the National Film Award for her role in that film. In the same year she also played the lead role in the film Chetna which was shot in 28 days along with the shooting of Dastak. That film was about the rehabilitation of prostitutes, and her role changed the portrayal of sex workers in Hindi cinema.[8]

Her sexy roles brought her success but also limited her choice of roles in future films. She landed not too many films including Haar Jeet (1972), Prem Parvat (1973), and the famous political satire Kissa Kursi Ka (1977). After starring in Vijay Anand’s Hum Rahen Na Rahen (1984) with Shabana Azmi, she got married in 1984 to writer-director B. R. Ishara, who had directed Chetna. The couple lives in Mumbai.[9] She appeared in a television series for ETV. She also appeared in a Punjabi movie Putt Jattan De (1981) with Shatrughan Sinha.



  1. ^ If she passed her 10th standard exams in 1967, she was born 1950-1951. However, she may have been born earlier.
  2. ^ Rehana Sultan who was a trailblazing ‘sexy actress’ The Telegraph, 25 November 2005.
  3. ^ Anupama Chopra (September 28, 2011). "Why Silk Smitha is Bollywood's favourite bad girl". NDTV Movies. 
  4. ^ Down the memory lane with Rehana Sultan, 29 October 2008.
  5. ^ The Sunday Standard, Bombay, India, June 10, 1973.
  6. ^ Charge of the FTII brigade Screen.
  7. ^ Merits - FTII
  8. ^ Fallen women in Bollywood films Times of India, 26 July 2004.
  9. ^ Rehana Sultan - Interview

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