Friday, July 25, 2014

Amjad Khan Still Immortal As ‘Gabbar Singh’ - Part I

Arey O! Sambha, Kitne Aadmi Thae…. 

When Gabbar Singh aka Amjad Khan uttered these words on the silver screen the audience went gaga over a villain for the first time more than the hero. 39 years later the aura of Gabbar Singh still continues to hunt film buffs. Even the present generation is mesmerized by his menacing villainy. July 27 marks the death anniversary of this great actor who left for heavenly abode on 27 July 1992 at the age of 51. Raaga.Com pays the legendary actor a humble homage. 

Born on 12 November 1940 as Amjad Zakaria Khan in Peshawar during pre independence, Amjad Khan is the son of famous actor Jayant who was a topnotch villain of the 50’s and 60’s.
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As a child young Amjad had a penchant for acting and drama. When he was just 4 years old his uncle N.K.Ziri gave him his first break in Bollywood in the film CHAR PAISA. Later at the age of 13 years he had the opportunity to work under the great film maker Raj Kapoor in his movie AB DILLI DUR NAHIN

For those who think Amjad Khan made his debut in SHOLAY, let me correct. In fact prior to SHOLAY, Amjad Khan had begun assisting the legendary filmmaker K Asif, who made MUGHUL-E-AZAM, for his under production movie LOVE AND GOD. Later another great filmmaker Chetan Anand (elder brother of Dev Anand and Vijay Anand) had first spotted him and offered him a role in his movie HINDUSTAN KI KASAM, opposite Raaj Kumar. The movie failed hence when Ramesh Sippy cast him SHOLAY, he decided to lunch him in a big way and hence he was given wide media coverage and introduced officially in SHOLAY. 

Amjad Khan in an interview said, “I am blessed to have the opportunity of working under great filmmakers like Chetan Anand in HINDUSTAN KI KASAM and assisting the great film legend K Asif during the making of LOVE AND GOD.” 

Readers would be aware that initially actor Danny Denzongpa was offered the coveted role of Gabbar Singh in SHOLAY because he was riding high as the most popular villain thanks to some of his hit movies like KHOTTE SIKKAY, DHUND, CHOR MACHAYE SHOR, 36 GHANTE, KALA SONA etc. However he declined the role as he had committed to filmmaker and dear friend Firoz Khan for his movie DHARMATMA

Later in an interview Danny had candidly confessed, “If I had done SHOLAY then Indian Cinema would have lost a fantastic actor like Amjad Khan.” 

NOTE: IN the next issue read how Amjad was discovered for SHOLAY and his success there after

Is Bollywood Inspiring Youth For Crime?

Sandesh Baliga, a 31 year youth facing trial for stalking two women in Australia has credited Bollywood movies as his inspiration for the rowdy act. 

Defending himself from the charges of pestering women by means of texting, calling and approaching the women excessively after single, chance meetings, he told the Hobart Magistrates Court that he indulged in the act after watching Bollywood movies that preach a woman falls in love after repeated persisting. 

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Sandesh Baliga is not the only youth influenced by the charisma of movies. Readers would be surprised to know that the crime branch of the Delhi Police in the year 2013 uncovered 36 youths, who were inspired by Bollywood movies. 

Among the movies that inspired gullible youth to indulge in the crime were DHOOM; SPECIAL 26; BOMBAY TO GOA; KHOSLA KA GHOSLA; MUNNA BHAI MBBS; and OYE LUCKY LUCKY OYE. 

The movie that inspired maximum youth for committing crime is Yash Chopra’s DHOOM series. 

Ravindra Yadav, additional commissioner of police (crime) briefing media said, “As per our record the movie DHOOM inspired about 15 cases. The criminals found the idea of running on bike quite fascinating.” He added, “Wherever DHOOM was released there had been an increased rise in cases of gold chain snatching. In fact before the release of the movie DHOOM, bikes with 100cc engines were used, but after the release of the film, engines of 150-200cc came in the market and became the hot favourites of the criminals." 

Ravindra Yadav added, "Movies are thus becoming manuals for the criminals. Youngsters in lure of becoming rich overnight commit crimes like cheating as shown in the Akshay Kumar starrer movie SPECIAL 26 in which he impersonates a CBI officer.” 

Readers would be surprised to know the Delhi police arrested about 14 youths conning people impersonating like Police officers using his fake identities.