Sanya Malhotra
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Sanya Malhotra, Suhani Bhatnagar’s Dangal co-star, Reacts to Her Death: “She Was So Special”

Sanya Malhotra, who played the older version of Babita Phogat alongside Suhani Bhatnagar in the hit 2016 film Dangal, mourned the loss of her young co-star on social media. 19-year-old Suhani Bhatnagar passed away on Friday due to complications from an autoimmune disease.

Sanya Malhotra said “She Was So Special”

Sanya Malhotra took to Instagram stories on Sunday to offer condolences to Suhani Bhatnagar’s family. She wrote: “I can’t believe it’s real. There was no one quite like our Suhani. She was so special, talented, and too young to have left us so soon.”

The actress affectionately referred to Bhatnagar as “Chotu” and said, “Rest in peace, Chotu. My deepest condolences to Pooja, Puneet, and the entire family.”

Sanya Malhotra had spent a significant amount of time with the young Suhani Bhatnagar on the sets of Dangal in 2015-16. She was very fond of her co-star and was shocked by the news of her premature death.

Dangal’s Young Babita Phogat

In the blockbuster sports drama Dangal, Suhani Bhatnagar played the childhood version of Commonwealth Gold medalist wrestler Babita Phogat. Sanya Malhotra later portrayed the adult Babita in the film’s second half.

Bhatnagarde delivered a memorable performance as the young, feisty Babita who rebelled against her father’s strict coaching methods. She earned praise for perfectly capturing Babita Phogat’s grit and determination as a child.

Her scenes with Aamir Khan, who played the role of the girl’s father, Mahavir Singh Phogat, were widely appreciated by critics and audiences. Despite her young age and inexperience, Suhani held her own against the veteran superstar.

Compilations From Autoimmune Disease

According to Suhani Bhatnagar’s parents, she was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disorder called dermatomyositis a few months ago after experiencing swelling in her hands and body. She was being treated at Delhi’s AIIMS hospital with high-dose steroid medications.

However, the steroids weakened Bhatnagar’s immune system substantially, making her prone to severe infections. She contracted one such unnamed infection recently, which led to breathing issues and fluid accumulation in her lungs. Despite intensive medical intervention, Suhani tragically passed away on Friday evening at the age of 19 years.

Suhani’s parents expressed their pride in her academic excellence and ambition to return to acting after completing her college education. But her promising life and career were cruelly cut short by the little-known disease dermatomyositis.

Outpouring Of Grief

The shocking news of Bhatnagar’s premature death due to medical complications has led to an outpouring of grief from her Dangal co-stars and others in the Hindi film industry.

Aamir Khan Productions said, “Suhani, you will always remain a star in our hearts. May you rest in peace.”

Director Nitesh Tiwari tweeted his condolences and prayed for strength for the late actor’s family to deal with the terrible loss.

Fatima Sana Shaikh, who played Babita’s sister Geeta Phogat in Dangal, also used social media to express her sadness over Suhani’s passing.

Several other Bollywood celebrities like Riteish Deshmukh, Suniel Shetty, and Akshay Kumar paid tribute to the departing soul on Twitter and Instagram.

Almost everyone mentioned how Bhatnagar had her entire bright life ahead of her and had carved a permanent place in the audience’s hearts through her Dangal performance despite her limited time in the limelight.

Gone Too Soon

While she shot to fame playing the young Babita Phogat in one of Hindi cinema’s most popular hits, Suhani Bhatnagar had only acted in that one film.

She had taken a break from movies to focus on her college education after Dangal. In a 2021 interview, Bhatnagar said she aspired to return to acting full-time after graduation.

But fate had other plans, and she sadly passed away on February 17, 2024, due to sudden health complications before realizing her acting dreams or fulfilling her true potential.

Sanya Malhotra and the entire Dangal team are distraught over the shocking loss of the film’s bright and talented teenage star, Suhani Bhatnagar, at such a tender age.

May her soul find eternal peace and her bereaved family get the strength to bear this tragedy. Suhani may be gone, but she will forever live on in our hearts through her acclaimed performance as young Babita Phogat in Dangal.

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