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The rise and fall of Fiza

chandigarh Updated: Aug 07, 2012 20:58 IST
Monica Sharma
Monica Sharma
Hindustan Times
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An ambitious woman, a powerful politician, an extramarital affair, a controversial runaway marriage and a quick split up - her story was the stuff Bollywood movies are made of. A few filmmakers, she had exulted once, were keen on making a movie on her life with her in the lead.

But it was not to be as Anuradha Bali's brush with limelight - after she converted to Islam and took the name Fiza for marrying then Haryana deputy chief minister Chander Mohan - was short-lived. Dumped by Mohan and shunned by friends and media, Fiza (41), who became increasingly cantankerous, was left alone. And then finally, she met a lonely end in the silence of her SAS Nagar residence, where her body was found in a highly decomposed condition on Monday.

Love, marriage, break up
A disarming smile, deep dark eyes and a flawless complexion, the pretty girl-next-door wanted fame but her looks, some say, though good enough for the tinsel town, could not do what a flurry of controversies did for her. A lawyer by profession, Fiza, who was an assistant advocate general in the Haryana government, first flirted with limelight when her name surfaced in connection with the mysterious disappearance of the then deputy CM in 2008.

While the state's intelligence machinery tried to get his whereabouts, Chander Mohan alias Chand Mohammad resurfaced with Fiza by his side. The two had tied the knot after converting to Islam.

The Congress leader had left his family and put his thriving political career in jeopardy with his father, former chief minister Bhajan Lal, even disowning him publicly. Chand and Fiza gave long interviews to news channels, holding hands and talking like a young couple.

Their marriage was viewed with scepticism and suspicion with speculations rife that Fiza had some "incriminating material" that could get the deputy CM in trouble. Their marriage, however, did not last long.

The two split up within 40 days of their "nikaah". Chander Mohan announced the annulment of their marriage in January 2009, returning to his family fold. Left embarrassed, she attempted suicide. Chander Mohan returned to her a few months later, but later left her forever. The hordes of camera crews and print reporters, who used to camp outside her house for hours together for one soundbyte, also disappeared soon enough.

The short-lived fame
The events left her shattered, but her desire to stay in the limelight was intact. She tried to find a toehold in the glamour world with some filmmakers and television producers also trying to cash in on her "celebrity status". She even appeared on a reality show "Iss Jungle Se Mujhe Bachao" shot in the rain forests of Malaysia. Just like her marriage, Fiza's stint in the world of glamour was short lived. Back home, she often got into arguments with her neighbours. One of them had even approached the police and accused Bali of trespass.

And, the mental breakdown
Her obsession to be in the news she led to theatrics. Dressed up like a bride, she once announced her marriage to India to show her "patriotism" and floated a non-governmental organisation (NGO) to hog the limelight.

When none of this worked, she made public her intentions of joining the politics and was even offered a post by Bahujan Samaj Party. In the last days of her life, it is said she had been lonely, especially after her mother's death a few months ago.