Rajesh Khanna, whose romantic persona in songs like “Mere sapno ki raani”, “O mere dil ke chain” and “Roop tera mastana” made many a young woman’s heart skip a beat, was Hindi film world's first actor to attain superstar status
Mumbai: Bollywood’s original superstar Rajesh Khanna, who charmed his way into the hearts of millions of swooning women in the 1960s and 70s, died on Wednesday, reports PTI.
69-year-old Khanna, who shot to superstardom with the 1969 hit ‘Aradhana’ opposite Sharmila Tagore, passed away at his home, two days after being discharged from Lilavati Hospital in Mumbai. He had been ailing since April.
Though a romantic hero, Khanna essayed a variety of roles with ease in his illustrious career spanning four decades. His portrayal as a cancer patient in the Hrishikesh Mukherjee-film ‘Anand’ (1971) in which he got the better of Amitabh Bachchan left many teary eyed.
Nicknamed ‘Kaka’ by his adoring fans, he is survived by estranged actress wife Dimple Kapadia and daughters Twinkle and Rinkie, all of whom were by his side when his end came.
Khanna’s family as also Lilavati Hospital authorities were tight-lipped about the nature of the actor’s illness.
“We cannot tell you about the nature of Khanna’s illness... Please get in touch with his family,” a spokesman for Lilavati who identified himself only as Dr Trivedi told PTI.
According to sources close to the family, the cremation will take place on Thursday.
Vijay, a close friend of Khanna who had been interacting with the media since his illness, said, “Kaka’s food intake had gone down over the last few days making him very weak.”
The news of Khanna’s death this afternoon spread like wildfire and hundreds of teary-eyed fans descended at his bungalow ‘Ashirwad’ in Bandra.
“My father-in-law is no more. He has gone to a nice and heavenly place. I am happy that he has gone there and hope that everyone will pray for him,” his actor son-in-law Akshay Kumar told waiting reporters and fans outside ‘Ashirwad’.
Several Bollywood celebrities including actors Rishi Kapoor, Prem Chopra and film maker Sahid Khan visited Khanna’s home to pay homage to the actor.
The veteran actor, who lived a secluded life of late, recently appeared for a film advertisement of a well known brand of fan, his face and eyes sunken. His reel fans were shocked to see him a pale shadow of his former self.
During his illustrious career Khanna gave 15 consecutive solo super-hits between 1969 and 1972 including “Aradhana”, “Haathi Mere Saathi”, “Anand” and “Amar Prem”.
Veteran actress Saira Banu, who missed a chance of working with Khanna during his stardom days, remembers the actor as a very ‘shy’ person.
“I was supposed to work with him in ‘Choti Bahu’ but I could not because I was ill. I shot with him for two days and found that he was very charming, humble and a shy person. May his soul rest in peace,” Ms Banu said.
His contemporary Manoj Kumar said he was planning to meet Khanna.
“I had called Dimple but she told me not to come as Rajesh Khanna was not in a position to talk... I miss him a lot and I have shared some of the best memories with him,” Mr Kumar said.
Filmmaker Subhash Ghai said, “He was the powerhouse of Hindi film industry. I met him on the sets of Aradhna, he had some kind of energy and you will be charged when he is around you. His name will be written in golden words.”
Producer-director Karan Johar said Khanna’s magic will live forever.
“The magic... the mannerism... the mania of Rajesh Khanna is inscribed in every archive of Indian cinema... forever... RIP SIR!!!” said Karan Johar.
Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar said, “The epitome of superstardom is no more amongst us. There was none, there is none and there won't be any like you kakaji. You will be missed.”
Tusshar Kapoor tweeted, “Rajesh Khanna ji, our first superstar is no more! I worked with him in ‘Kyaa dil ne kaha” and learnt a lot just talking to him! May his soul RIP!”
Actress Neha Dhupia said, “RIP Rajesh khanna Saab ... U, ur stardom, ur magic will live forever!”
Shabana Azmi, who starred opposite Khanna in films such as “Amar Deep”, “Thodisi Bewafaii” and “Avtaar”, said, “He was the superstar like no other, did 10 films with him. Met him last at the Apsara awards. Pale shadow of himself but smile as winsome RIP Rajesh K.”
“Rajesh Khanna gave us a crash course in romance. He introduced us to a special twinkle in the eye that made us feel good about ourselves. RIP,” Anupam Kher wrote.
“Another of Hindi cinema’s giants passes, Rajesh Khanna.
Our sincere condolences to his family. We will miss him dearly,” Madhuri Dixit tweeted.
“Too young. Too early. Tragic. RIP Rajesh Khanna. A candle that burned brighter than any star for too short a time,” filmmaker Shekhar Kapur said.
“When we lose a loved one, something within us dies. Our generation loved Rajesh Khanna. Today a bit if us dies with this enigmatic star,” Mahesh Bhatt tweeted.
“Just heard the sad news, heartfelt condolences & prayers to the family to cope with this irreparable loss, RIP Rajesh Khanna, a Superstar always,” said Shilpa Shetty.
“Rip Rajesh Khanna,” said Sonam Kapoor.
“RIP to the 1st king of romance... Rajesh Khanna,” Shahid Kapoor posted on the micro-blogging site.
“Loss of a Superstar! Iconic Actor! RIP Rajesh Khanna!” Bipasha Basu posted.
As suggested yesterday, Nifty did get a support near 5,160 and a small rally ensued, but the gains may not be sustained
Yesterday we had mentioned that the Nifty will enjoy a small rally but is headed down towards its first support at 5,160 and then at 5,075. Today the index almost reached the first level of support by touching 5,169. A recovery in the post-noon session helped the market close in the green. We still maintain that the Nifty is headed down. The National Stock Exchange witnessed a volume of 53.68 crore shares.
The market opened flat with a positive bias taking cues from its Asian peers which were mixed in morning trade. While US Fed chief Ben Bernanke painted a gloomy picture of the US economy, he reiterated that he would look at alternatives if the employment situation doesn’t improve. The Nifty opened six points higher at 5,199 and the Sensex rose eight points to start the day at 17,113.
Unable to sustain the positive opening, the indices soon moved lower and fell to the day’s low at around 11.10am with the Nifty going down to 5,169 and the Sensex retracting to 17,039. However, bargain hunting at lower levels helped the indices move into the green in noon trade. But volatility and selling pressure capped the gains.
The benchmarks gained momentum in the post noon session on support from metal, realty and capital goods sectors, and a positive opening of the European markets.
The gains continued in subsequent trade with the indices hitting their highs at around 2.25pm. At this point, the Nifty touched 5,223 and the Sensex scaling 17,205.
The market closed near the highs mainly on gains in index stocks, with the Nifty snapping its five-day losing streak. The Nifty gained 23 points to 5,216 and the Sensex settled at 17,185, up 80 points.
The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was in favour of the losers at 808:843.
Among the broader indices, the BSE Mid-cap index gained 0.53% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.29%.
The top sectoral indices were BSE Metal (up 1.48%); BSE Capital Goods (up 1.07%); BSE Realty (up 0.93%); BSE Auto (up 0.59%) and BSE Power (up 0.51%). The losers were BSE Oil & Gas, BSE Healthcare (down 0.22%); BSE Consumer Durables (down 0.11%) and BSE Fast Moving Consumer Durables (down 0.02%).
The main performers on the Sensex were Bajaj Auto (up 5.20%); Tata Power (up 2.71%); Jindal Steel (up 2.67%); Sterlite Industries (up 2.43%) and Maruti Suzuki (up 2.31%). The key losers were Tata Motors (down 1.93%); Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (down 1.85%); NTPC (down 0.79%); State Bank of India (down 0.59%) and Cipla (down 0.56%).
The top two A Group gainers on the BSE were—Pantaloon Retail (up 6.83%) and Financial Technologies (up 6.03%).
The top two A Group losers on the BSE were—Union Bank of India (down 3.01%) and Punjab National Bank (down 2.79%).
The top two B Group gainers on the BSE were—Decolight Ceramics (up 20%) and Filatex Fashions (up 19.73%).
The top two B Group losers on the BSE were—NU-Tech Corporate Services (down 19.29%) and Cochin Minerals & Rutile (down 16.87%).
The toppers on the Nifty were Bajaj Auto (up 5.32%); Tata Power (up 3.34%); Sesa Goa (up 2.91%); Jindal Steel and Maruti Suzuki ((up 2.71% each). Punjab National Bank (down 2.98%); Tata Motors, Bank of Baroda (down 1.95% each); Dr Reddy’s Labs (down 1.91%) and Ranbaxy Laboratories (down 1.06%) were the top five losers on the index.
The Asian pack closed mixed as Chinese premier Wen Jiabao on Tuesday said that the government will implement a more ‘proactive’ labour policy as the situation is likely to face pressures, going ahead. Meanwhile, South Korean authorities are reportedly investigating the country’s top four banks for allegedly setting three-month certificate of deposit (CD) rates.
The Shanghai Composite gained 0.37%; the Jakarta Composite added 0.02%; the KLSE Composite rose 0.36% and the Straits Times settled 0.08% higher. On the other hand, the Hang Seng contracted 1.11%; the Nikkei 225 fell 0.32%; the KOSPI Composite tanked 1.48% and the Taiwan Weighted dropped 1.09%.
At the time of writing, the key European indices were up between 0.09% and 0.64% while the US stock futures were in the negative.
Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of shares totalling Rs474.95 crore while domestic institutional investors were net sellers of stocks worth Rs266.21 crore.
Fitch Ratings has upgraded Ansal Housing and Construction’s long-term rating to ‘stable’. The upgrade reflects regular servicing of term loans by the company over the last six months, the rating agency said.
The agency also noted that there are limited construction-related risks in the company’s ongoing projects as a majority of the land under development (around 55%) would be sold as plots. The stock slipped 0.11% to close at Rs44.85 on the NSE.
Pune-based diversified finance company Bajaj Finserv will be raising Rs1,000 crore by December, mainly to participate in the proposed capital raising plan of its non-banking lending subsidiary. The money will be raised through a rights issue. The stock jumped 4.55% to close at Rs712 on the NSE.
FMCG firm Jyothy Laboratories said it has allotted a bonus share to its shareholders in the ratio of 1:1 to the company’s shareholders. Jyothy Laboratories has allotted little over 8.06 crore shares of Re1 each. The stock declined 0.67% to settle at Rs125.85 on the NSE.
Under the new proposal, for those who acquire fresh spectrum, the roll-out obligations would be to cover 10% of the blocks in the third year, 20% of the blocks in the fourth year and 30% of the blocks in the fifth year