After the funeral of Indian movie star Sridevi Kapoor on Wednesday, the Kapoor family has released a statement revealing the toll it has taken on the family, particularly on her daughters who the actress called “her life”.
The family also urged the media to respect their privacy and allow them space to grieve.
“The past few days have been trying times for us as a family. Today, particularly, has been one of the hardest. We laid to rest a beautiful soul who has gone too soon.
“She leaves behind a legacy that is unique. Her talent was undeniable, her beauty unmatched and her ability to connect with the audience was legendary. 'Sri' had the same connection with her family as well.
"The one thing that helped us all get through these last few days was the amazing amount of love and support from everyone — be it her many colleagues, her innumerable fans, her caring friends or loving family from across the country and the world.”
The family then asked for support so that Sridevi's daughters, Khushi and Janhvi, could build the life that she wanted for them.
“This outpouring of love is the memory that we would like Khushi and Janhvi to have of their mother ... Let us all who loved Sri, envelope her two little ones, her 'life', as she often called them, with as much, or more, love than we gave Sri so that they can live their lives with a little less ache in their hearts.
“Let us help them remember their mother fondly, with that beloved twinkle in her eyes, and help them build a life.
"To the members of the media, we ask that you respect the privacy of the family and allow us the space to grieve. Sri lived her life with dignity and we implore that you give her the same respect now.”
Boney Kapoor, Sridevi’s movie producer husband released a personal message in which he talked about the anguish of losing a wife, friend and partner.
"To the world she was their Chandni … the actor par excellence … their Sridevi …. But to me she was my love, my friend, mother to our girls … my partner. To our daughters, she was their everything … their life. She was the axis around which our family ran," he wrote, referring to the star's hit movie Chandni or Moonlight.
He echoed the family's appeal for privacy.
“I have a sincere request. Please respect our need to grieve privately,” Mr Kapoor said.
“My only concern at this time is to protect my daughters and find a way to move forward without Sri. She was our life, our strength and the reason we always smiled.
“Rest in peace, my love. Our lives will never be the same again.”
The statements aim to quell continuing speculation in the media surrounding the cause of her death.
The Indian movie star died on Saturday night in a Dubai hotel room. She was in the UAE to attend a family wedding.
The Dubai police and prosecution authorities shut the case after concluding there was no foul play and that the 54-year-old actress had accidentally drowned in a hotel bathtub after losing consciousness and was under the influence of alcohol.
Her body was handed over to her family three days after her death after following regular procedure, police said.
But several television stations and newspapers had questioned the police findings, pursued unsubstantiated reasons for her death, while others in the media called for restraint.