Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi and Sharmila Tagore: a love story

Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi and Sharmila Tagore: a love story

Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi’s death on Thursday brought an end to an enduring romance

When Sharmila Tagore tied the knot with the erstwhile royal 42 years ago, it was not only a marriage of cricket and cinema, but also one that broke many stereotypes.  He was a Nawab from a well-known Muslim family and she was a Hindu who belonged to the illustrious Tagore family.

As she was to admit many times in later years, Pataudi, popularly known as Tiger, proved to be an exceptionally liberal companion.  Be it her wearing a bikini in An Evening In Paris in 1967, when they were courting, or taking up glamorous roles after marriage in 1969 and later motherhood – he always stood by her, always the ideal partner.  She once said in an interview, “I haven’t given up anything (after marrying Tiger). He is very liberal in his views. I’ve gained a lot of experience and gained another culture, cuisine, and way of dressing. I’ve benefited a lot.”

Their marriage was not expected to last – she converted, becoming Ayesha Sultana – but they proved naysayers wrong.  She once told a reporter, “If Tiger and I make attempts to promote harmony, I do not know how far we will succeed. People will say that I am not a Muslim and that Tiger is a Hindu fanatic.”  The couple had three children – Saif, Saba and Soha – but Tiger never stopped her from carrying on in showbiz. In fact, she gave most of her hits after marriage and motherhood.  Many years down the line, when he was arrested for poaching, the actress stood by her husband like a rock.  Death may have snatched away the man from the woman, but like an advertisement they did together, in popular imagination – Pataudi and Sharmila will live on together.

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  • rekha sharma

    It is very sad news. The nawab of yesteryears has lost in paradise. May God give strength to Sharmilaji and her family to bear this irreparable loss.

  • rekha shrama

    It is very sad to hear the news of his death. The shining star of cricket and great supporter to icon of Indian cinema has dead. May his sour rest in peace.

  • saeeda hamidi

    may the nawabs soul rest in peace and may allah give sharmilaji saif soha and saba the strength to bear this big loss