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The suicide syndrome!

THE YOUNGER sister of the number one actress, Simran, and an up-and-coming actress herself, Monal (21) committed suicide. She used her duppatta to hang herself from the ceiling fan of her posh apartment in Vadapalani. Only a few weeks ago, Pratyuksha, another actress, consumed poison and died, though there are a lot of unexplained questions about her death. Why do actresses from the South either attempt or commit suicide? The list of actresses who took their lives is long — ‘Fatafat’ Jayalakshmi, Kalpana, Shoba, Vijayasree, Silk Smitha, Viji and Pratyuksha. Added to this, there are stories about ‘suicide attempts ‘ made by top actresses. Behind this, lurks a story of love, marriage, greed, separation, violence and lifestyle that throw up questions about the ugly secrets of these beautiful ladies. What is now clear is that instant stardom has produced its share of pressures and unhappiness in the lives of these young actresses. In a male dominated industry, these actresses know that their star status is short-lived. So they are under constant pressure to make as much hay (money) as possible while the sun shines. In a dog-eats-dog world, parents treat them a little better than performing animals. These young actresses make far too many compromises and by the time they are at the top, they have no friends and become totally insecure. In most of the cases they are easy prey for any male connected with the film industry, who lends them a shoulder. But soon the frenzied search for happiness and fulfilment ends in tragedy and grief. Those who manage to survive the pit falls of stardom end up marrying an already married man!

SREEDHAR PILLAI

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