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The mega story of a super star: Rajesh Khanna, the hero of super hits
Rajesh Khanna's name sparked hysteria amongst his fans. Between Aradhana n 1969 and Prem Kahani in 1975, Rajesh enjoyed divine status. His very name had a magic spell. His record of consecutive solo super hits still remains unbroken.

VINI, VIDI, vici - he came, he saw and he conquered Bollywood exactly in the style of Caesar invading Britain. The road to stardom was always tough, but for him it seemed to be so easy. Almost a cakewalk victory with every attempt.

Rajesh Khanna was the 'kaka' for all who starred in one after another mega hits such as "Safar", "Kati Patang", "Sachaa Jhutha", "Aan Milo Sajna", "Anand", "Amar Prem" and "Mere Jeevan Saathi". Kaka, as he was popularly known, was the ever urbane, suave romantic actor of his time. Along with glory and fame, money also came his way as he was one of the highest paid actors of his time. His popularity after Aradhana and Do Raaste with two of his best co-stars respectively, Sharmila Tagore and Mumtaz, was sky-rocketing. He was the first  superstar of Bollywood. Even the Big B too said that he had got famous because he worked with Rajesh Khanna in ‘Anand’.Born Jatin Arora on Dec 29, 1942, he was adopted and raised by foster parents. In 1965, he won the All-India Talent Contest organised by United Producers and Filmfare and only the next year he made his debut with "Aakhri Khat" in 1966.

Rajesh had a humble beginning in Amritsar. The transformation of Jatin to Rajesh is as romantic as a fairy story. He acted  in about 160 films, of which 106 had him as the solo lead hero and 22 were two hero projects.

Who can ever forget those timeless melodies and his maddened head-swinging. It is for his songs he became the heart-throb of his fans. R.D. Burman was a great friend of Rajesh who won their hearts with  songs such as "Mere Sapnon Ki Rani..." in "Aradhana", "Zindagi Ek Safar" in "Andaaz" or "Yeh Shaam Mastani" in "Kati Patang" which were sung in full throated ease by great singers like  Kishore Kumar. The tragedy of this lover-hero’s life is known to all. He was mad in love with Dimple Kapadia, a 16-year-old heroine, nearly 16 years younger to him, but after a titanic romance, he married her in 1973. It did not last only a year more than a decade.

Rajesh was no less successful in offbeat films although he could not continue to be popular in the television serials. The involvement in politics and the divorce with Dimple ruined him. His four-decade career has at last come to an end rather with a whimper as he has been suffering from cancer. He led a lonely life after the divorce, but in his last days his estranged wife and son-in-law Akshay Kumar shared with him some tears and some smiles. It was great fall from the dizzying heights of fame to silent tall shadows of oblivion. But Bollywood will remember him and more so the fans whose frenzy was sparked off by him once upon a time. Rajesh Khanna is is no more but he leaves behind uncountable golden moments for his bollywood fans.

On the silver screen, he was the lover, in life too he was one. In his last days, the two lovers met again, but now the warmth of life is gone, only the fading memory of love. The news that Rajesh Khanna passed away-hit the headline of the newspapers all over the country, and thousands and lakhs of his fans will sing silently "kahin door jab din dhal jaye....".

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In This Article
akshay kumar
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