Sridevi Kapoor: India fans gather to pay tribute to Bollywood star

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Media captionSridevi was an icon in Bollywood cinema

Fans have gathered in the western Indian city of Mumbai to pay their respects to Bollywood star Sridevi Kapoor, who died in Dubai on Saturday.

Her body which was flown back to India on Tuesday, is currently at the Celebration Sports Club near her home to accommodate the crowds.

The funeral will be held later on Tuesday.

The actress, 54, died “due to accidental drowning following loss of consciousness”, police said.

She was found in a hotel bathtub.

Known simply as Sridevi, the actress was considered one of the very few Indian female superstars capable of huge box-office success without the support of a male hero. She appeared in nearly 300 films over five decades.

Large numbers of police have been deployed outside the star’s house, on the procession route and outside the Vile Parle Seva Samaj crematorium where the body will be taken. Thousands of fans are expected to turn out for the funeral.

It had earlier been reported that Sridevi died of cardiac arrest while at a family wedding in Dubai.

The full post-mortem report has not yet been released to the public and will be expected to explain how the original report of cardiac arrest and the listing of “accidental drowning” are linked.

The actress had been in the United Arab Emirates to attend the wedding of her nephew, Mohit Marwah.

Why was she such a huge box-office draw?

The star of such classics as Mr India, Chandni, ChaalBaaz and Sadma, Sridevi worked in the Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada and Hindi languages.

Her acting career began at the age of four and by 13 she was cast in the adult role of a woman avenging her lover’s death.

Sridevi debuted as a lead actress in a Bollywood film in 1978, soon becoming one of India’s biggest film stars.

She decided to take a break from the film industry after the release of Judaai in 1997. She made a comeback in 2012, starring in English Vinglish.

In 2013, the Indian government awarded her the Padma Shri – the country’s fourth-highest civilian honour.

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