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When Raaj Kumar said he didn’t want celebs to make his funeral a ‘tamasha’

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Raaj Kumar died of throat cancer in 1996. The actor once told filmmaker Mehul Kumar that he did not want people from Bollywood to attend his funeral.

Actor Raaj Kumar has appeared in more than 70 films in his career. The actor died in July 1996 after a two-year battle with throat cancer. Before his death, he had told an industry colleague that he did not want people from the film fraternity to attend his deathbed. Also read: Window closed to keep Raaj Kumar’s wig as Sharmila Tagore travels in car without air conditioning

Raaj made his Bollywood debut in the 1952 film Rangili. He later appeared in famous films such as Indian Mother (1957), Hamraaz (1967), Heer Raanjha (1971), Maryada (1971), Lal Patthar (1971), Pakeezah (1972) and many more.

In an interview shared on YouTube channel Bollywood Aaj Aur Kal, director Mehul Kumar talked about his time with Raaj on the 1987 film Marte Dum Tak. The film’s final shot is of Raj’s funeral procession, which is canned outside the Farias Hotel in Kandala. The actor insisted that Mehul wear a wreath on his “body”. Mehul recalled: “He was lying in the van and I put a wreath on him. Raaj Saab joked, ‘Jaani, abhi pehna lo haar. Poke jaayenge tab tumhe pata bhi nahi chalega. At that moment, I didn’t say much. , just tell him, ‘Hope you live a long life’.”

But Raaj’s statement left Mehul in doubt, so after packing up, when he went to the actor to clarify what he said. “He said ‘Jaani, tumko maloom nahi, shamshaan yatra ko tamasha bana dete hain film line mein (you don’t know people in the industry). People will come in white and then the media will come in. It’s not about honoring the deceased, Instead, it became Tamasha. My funeral was for my family. No one was going to attend except my family.

Raaj’s last film was God and Gun in 1995. The film also stars Raj Babbar, Jackie Shroff, Gouthami.His son Puru Raaj Kumar is also an actor and has starred in films such as Mission Kash

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