Sumalatha (b 1963) is an Indian film actress, politician who is the current Member of Parliament in the Lok Sabha from Mandya, Karnataka. She has acted in more than 220 films in Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Tamil and Hindi. She gained popularity in Telugu Cinema and Malayalam cinema and later married Kannada actor-politician Ambareesh and has a son Abhishek Gowda.

Sumalatha (1).jpg
Sumalatha in 2019
Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha
Assumed office
23 May 2019
Preceded byL. R. Shivarame Gowda
Personal details
Born (1962-08-27) 27 August 1962 (age 58)[1]
Madras, Madras State, India
Political partyIndependent
(m. 1991; died 2018)
ChildrenAbhishek Gowda
  • Actress
  • Politician

In March 2019, Sumalatha announced that she would seek election for Lok Sabha from Mandya constituency of Karnataka as an independent candidate. On 23 May 2019, Sumalatha won against Nikhil Kumaraswamy by a margin of more than 1.25 lakh votes in the Lok Sabha election.[2]


Sumalatha during 60th Filmfare Awards South in 2013

Sumalatha did her schooling at St. Joseph's Convent School, Brodipet, Guntur.[3] She began acting at age 15, after winning an Andhra Pradesh beauty contest in 1979. After her pictures began circulating in the magazines, film producer D. Ramanaidu expressed interest in casting her in his film and offered her a signining amount of 1,001 in 1979.[4] However, she made her film debut in Tamil with Thisai Maariya Paravaigal (1979). She was named the Best New Face following the film. Her Kannada entry was through Ravichandra opposite to Rajkumar. She entered Telugu through Samajaniki Saval (1979), and Malayalam through Moorkhan (1980). She appeared in films in many languages Kannada, Tamil, Malayalam and Telugu early in her career. She was Rajinikanth's second heroine besides Rati Agnihotri in films like Murattu Kaalai and Kazhugu. She was the heroine of legendary Malayalam actor Jayan's last film Kolilakkam (1981). In her Malayalam entry film Moorkhan, she acted as Jayan's second heroine. Her most memorable Malayalam films include Thazhvaram, Isabella, Nirakkoottu, Dhinarathrangal, Thoovanathumbikal, Parampara and New Delhi.[5] She has acted in many Kannada movies like Aahuti, Avatara Purusha, Tayi Kanasu, Karna, Hong Kong nalli Agent Amar Tayiya Hone, Kallarali Hoovagi and Ravichandra, in which she acted with actor Rajkumar. Malayalam is the language in which she acted the most times, followed by Telugu.

She received the best actress Nandi Award for her role in Shrutilayalu in 1987. She is a close friend of actress Suhasini Maniratnam, her co-star in a Telugu movie. The friendship between the two provided the material for a candid scene in the film, when director Kodandarami Reddy noticed Suhasini combing Sumalatha's long hair on the train journey to the film set. Reddy asked his cameraman, Ashok Reddy, to film the two and added the scene to the movie's final cut.[6]

Sumalatha reportedly speaks six languages, and has acted in five.

Personal lifeEdit

Sumalatha with husband Ambareesh

Sumalatha married Kannada actor and politician Ambareesh on 8 December 1991 and their son Abhishek Gowda was born in the year 1993.[7] She starred alongside Ambareesh[8] in movies like Aahuti, Avatara Purusha, Kallarali Hoovagi, New Delhi and Sri Manjunatha. Kallarali Hoovagi went on to win a National Film Award.

In an interview with TV9 Kannada, the couple revealed that they first met each other on the sets of the movie Aahuti. In the course of the interview, Sumalatha expressed that Ambareesh was extroverted and gregarious in nature where as she leaned more towards having an introverted and conscientious personality on the sets. She shared memories of Ambareesh giving her friendly advice to mingle with other co-stars in the set by involving herself in group activities; else it could lead to misunderstandings. She revealed that it was Ambareesh's bold, genuine, carefree, down to earth personality that made him memorable and attractive to her.[9][10]

On 24 November 2018 Ambareesh died due to a cardiac arrest.[11] Few days after Sumalatha shared an emotional letter addressed to late Ambareesh on 8 December 2018 the eve of their 27th marriage anniversary.[12]

On 6 July 2020 It was reported that Sumalatha tested positive for COVID-19 and placed herself in home quarantine.

Political lifeEdit

In March 2019, Sumalatha announced that she would be contesting as an independent candidate in the 2019 Indian general election in Karnataka (Lok Sabha) from Mandya.[13] She was backed by big stars from the Kannada Film Industry like Darshan, Yash, Rockline Venkatesh, Doddanna.[14] Bharatiya Janata Party decided not to field a candidate in Mandya in efforts to support her. Some of the Congress Party workers supported her indirectly due to the history of traditional rivalry between JDS - Congress rivalry in Mandya which was a tricky situation for congress.[15] She won, defeating Nikhil with a margin of 128,876 votes.[16] She is the first Independent woman Member of parliament from Karnataka.[17]


  • Devar's Best New Face Award: Thisai Maariya Paravaigal (1979) (Tamil)
  • Special Jury Nandi award (Best Actress): Shrutilayalu (1987) (Telugu)
  • Film Fans Award for Best Actress: Shrutilayalu (1987) (Telugu)
  • Kerala Film Critics Award for Best Actress: New Delhi and Thoovanathumbikal (1987) (Malayalam)
  • Lux Award for Best Actress: New Delhi (1987) (Malayalam)
  • Film Fans Award for Best Actress: New Delhi (1987) (Hindi)
  • Kerala Film Critics Award for Best Actress: Isabella (1988) (Malayalam)[18]








  1. ^ "Parliament of India biodata". Retrieved 23 June 2020.
  2. ^ "Sumalatha Ambareesh". 2019. Retrieved 8 October 2020.
  3. ^ "Sumalatha Ambareesh(Independent(IND)):Constituency- MANDYA(KARNATAKA) - Affidavit Information of Candidate".
  4. ^ Shivakumar, S. (27 March 2015). "On the road of flowers". The Hindu. Retrieved 23 April 2017.
  5. ^ ManoramaOnline Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Ambi not interested in films - Sumalatha". IndiaGlitz. 27 February 2007. Retrieved 14 June 2009.
  8. ^ "Ambarish, Mrs.Sumalatha to act together". OneIndia. 6 May 2006. Retrieved 14 June 2009.
  9. ^ Rebel-Star ಅಂಬರೀಶ್Sumalatha ,PRAMAPALLAVI. 11 August 2009 – via YouTube.
  10. ^ "personal".
  11. ^ Gejji, Anil (25 November 2018). "Ambareesh death: Kannada actor, former Union minister Ambareesh died in Bengaluru hospital". The Times of India. Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  12. ^ "Sumalatha Amarnath". Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  13. ^ "Sumalatha to contest Mandya LS polls as an independent". Deccan Herald. 18 March 2019. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  14. ^ "It's official. Sumalatha to contest as Independent from Mandya". The Hindu. Special Correspondent. 18 March 2019. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 7 March 2020.CS1 maint: others (link)
  15. ^ "Actor Ambareesh's Wife Sumalatha Gets BJP Backing In Karnataka's Mandya". 23 March 2019. Retrieved 18 May 2019.
  16. ^ "Karnataka Lok Sabha Election Results: Kumaraswamy's son Nikhil loses in Mandya". The Times of India. 23 May 2019. Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  17. ^ Yasmeen, Afshan (25 May 2019). "Two women from State heading to Lok Sabha this time". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 7 March 2020.
  18. ^ "Biodata".

External linksEdit