Yeh kya hua kaise hua, Zindagi ek safar hai suhana, Zindagi ka safar, Zindagi kaise hai paheley haye, Hame aur jeene ki chahat no hoti Agar tum na hote & the list goes on… but the Late Rajesh Khanna can be described in all the above lines and they truely are Rajesh Khanna songs.
Born in Amritsar & landed to foster parents defines, yeh kya hua———
Travelled in his own imported car to studios, talent hunt contests & won the contest to act in GP Sippy’s RAAZ —-Zindagi ek saafar.
A non Kapoor or Khan gave hit after hit, 15 hits in a row, shows marks of Zindagi kaise hai paheli…
It was in the sunny days of circa 1965 just after the college, with passion to become a star with ordinary looks, medium height and pimples sprinkled face- Rajesh Khanna gets selected in a contest and enters filmdom. His first movie released was Aakhri Khat with a not so popular star Indarani Mukherjee. The film focus is on child star Bunty but somewhere a spark is set followed by painter of RAAZ with new comer Babita. The humming sound of Md. Rafi akeley hai chaaley aao jahan ho tum, follows Baharon ke sapne with Asha Parekh- the film gives Rajesh Khanna presence in film industry and then after the bumper flop of Sharmila Tagore with movies like An evening in Paris, AAmne Samne, Shakti Sammant casts his protégé Sharmila Tagore opposite Rajesh Khanna and the concoction was ARADHANA .
The success of this movie fails the oxford dictionary and the Bombay journalists coin a new word to describe the persona of the Great Star Rajesh Khanna as ‘The Phenomenon’ ‘The superstar’. Thereafter its history of hit after hit- 15 hits in a row & only screen pair Rajesh-Mumtaz to give 8 hits in the total movies acted together from Do Raste ,Bandhan, Roti, Saccha Jutha, Aap ki Kasam, Apna Desh, Dhushman, Prem Khanni & one special guest role in Aaina.
J Om Prakash, the movie wizard with hit films starting with alphabet A also mesmerized the audiences by leaving the alphabet A and producing & advertising AAA se rishta tor ke RAA se rishta joda ,RAa Rajesh Khanna ,RAa Raja Rani .
The man next door image was strengthened when he acted in a film with animals (a territory for Tarzan B grade movies ) Haathi mere Sathi. This brought him close to children & their Parents, a territory occupied then by Shammi Kappor.
The whole country was captured in the magical magnetism of Mr Khanna, when in March 1973 he married the Gujrati damsel from Bombay; the daughter of Chunni Bhai Kapadia; the fresh discovery of Raj Kapoor; the innocent face of BOBBY —DIMPLE Kapadia.
With Dimple he was blessed with two lovely daughters Twinkle & Rinkie.
In 1975 the country was in the grip of emergency, love stories got replaced with rebellion, anger, revenge. The single star films got encouraged by a package of multi starrer. Rajesh Khanna did not get carried away to be the part of crowd & in return lost his significance and started fading away.
Family life was in turmoil & in 1983 Dimple, along with her two kids walked out of AAshirwad, the two separated (not Divorced ). The only rays of hope for Rajesh Khanna were the angel daughters who inspired life in him- a replica to the lines “ Hame aur jeene ki Chhahat na hoti agar tum na hotey”… truely his songs defined his life.
The star, the superstar, the craze of 1970s did not accept the change & started fading away. The man who was commanding love & affection was left unattended by the near ones, the loved ones, which was again reflected in his character played in Rishi Kapoor directed movie AA ab lot chale. Perhaps Rishi could read in the underlines of Rajesh Khanna- the state, the unhappiness, the need of care taking and that he gave the care taking role to Aishwariya Rai (aka Twinkles caring , love oozing approach to her father ). The movie was not hit at box office, but the message was clear that Rajesh Khanna was having every material thing that money could buy, BUT love, affection, caring, sharing of loved ones was missing. The sign of helplessness could be seen thereafter on his most admired face.
Rajesh Khanna was an era, an institution of romance, love, passion, style, dialogues, a fashion statement, collaborative attitude, class of splendor, Larger than life, a bundle of smiles from talent hunt days to challo ab pack up ka time aagaya … This is the Rajesh Khanna biography as witnessed by the nation of crazy fan lovers, crazy girls who married him in their hearts and worshipped him immensely.
This is a post written by S.K.Sachdev.
About S.K.Sachdev: He is a Pharmaceutical & Beverages expert, for having spent major part of his career with Dabur and Coca-Cola. His keen interests are monitoring political and business news and can be reached on this forum for any discussion related to the country, pharmacy, beverages.