Rajesh Khanna – the superstar of the 70s.
Rajesh Khanna made significant contribution in bollywood films in the 70s and most of his films are still remembered for strong storybase and good music. He impressed the viewers with his performance in the film Aradhana, opposite Sharmila Tagore, in 1969, which was directed by Shakti Samanta. The songs composed by SD Burman and sung by Kishore including “roop tera mastana”, and Rafi “gunguna rahi hai bhwar” became everlasting hits.
Rajesh Khanna acted in films having realistic stories like Khamoshi, which was the hindi adaptation of Suchitra Sen’s legendary film Deep Jele Jai, where he was insane and had been cured by Wahida Rehman by pretending to be his better half. His film Anand, directed Hrishikesh Mukherjee, also had a unique story, where the cancer patient is being treated by Big B, and the person knowing that he is not going to survive for a long period, makes everyone laugh and entertains the patients and doctors in the medical centre. Salil Chowdhury had provide immortal tunes like “kahi door jab din dhal jaye” and “maine tere liye hi saat rang ke sapne chune” sung by Mukesh, and “zindagi kaisi hai paheli” sung by Manna Dey, and the songs contributed to the immense success of the film.
His film Bawarchi, directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee was the hindi adaptation of Tapan Sinha’s film “golpo holeo satti”, where he acted as the cook in the house who taught the members of the house to be hardworking and help each other for the successful running of the joint family. His film Safar, was the hindi adaptation of Arundhuti Debi’s film Chalachal, where he is the painter who has an affair with Sharmila Tagore. The songs in the film composed by Kalyanji Anandji including “zindagi ka safar”, sung by Kishore Kumar had touched the hearts of filmlovers.
His film Amarprem, was the hindi adaptation of Uttamkumar’s film Nishipadda, where he was sympathetic towards a tawaif played by Sharmila Tagore, who had to accept the trade due to social circumstances. The songs composed by RD Burman and sung by Kishore Kumar including “chingari koi bharke”, “kuch to log kahenge”, have not lost their appeal, and are sung by contestants in the musical competition titled “K for Kishore” in TV channels these days. In fact RD Burman, Laxmikant Pyarellal and Kishore Kumar had a major contribution in the success of Rajesh Khanna’s films. His films like Roti, Aap ki kasam, Aan milo sajna, Kati Patang, Hathi Mere Saathi, have become everlasting hits and are seen even today, by the present generation when shown in different TV channels.
By: Rumi Chatterji.