Till the devil do us part

Arts Entertainments

Divorce seems to be the flavor of the season. Just five months after her marriage to Nepalese businessman Samrat Dahal, Manisha Koirala, the talented but quirky actress, was back in the news for all the wrong reasons. It was speculated that Mrs Dil Se was on her way to splitville.

And again, media circles are abuzz with ex-actress Karisma Kapoor, who is ready to end her marriage to Delhi businessman Sanjay Kapur.

We go down memory lane and make a list of the marriages that didn’t last…

Guru Dutt – Geeta Dutt

He was a movie genius. She is a talented singer. She is an admirer of Bengali culture. She is Bengali by birth. It was natural for the two to fall in love and then get married. Marriage and two children later, the marriage hit a snag. Many say that Waheeda Rehman was the reason. Guru Dutt cast a dark southern belle, Waheeda Rehman in Pyasa and the rest, they say, is history. The director was completely smitten with this delicate beauty…although, Waheeda maintains to this day, that the ambers were one-sided.

One-sided romance, box office failures (Kaagaz ke Phool & Pyaasa, both were his love works) and horrible lifestyle (drinking, smoking and an eccentric streak) brought him to the end and end of his married life. At the time of his death, he was separated from his wife Geeta Dutt and Waheeda Rehman had become estranged from him.

Vinod Khanna – Geetanjali

Vinod Khaana is among the most handsome men Hindi movies have ever seen: dark, tall, broad-shouldered and strong. Although he started out as a villain in movies, producers and directors soon realized that he had the makings of an actor. In fact, competing against Amitabh Bachchan for much of his career, he was a critics’ favorite as much as Bachchan was adored by the masses.

In the early ’70s, even while still establishing his career, Khaana married his college sweetheart, Geetanjali, and within two years the two were proud parents of two boys, Rahul and Akshaye. But around 1975, Khanna became a disciple of Acharya Rajneesh and then in the early 1980s he moved to Rajneeshpuram in the US for four years washing dishes and working as a gardener for Osho.

Although he was in contact with his family by phone from the US, the separation affected his beautiful wife and resulted in a divorce. Vinod is now married to Kavita Khanna, a lawyer by profession, and has a son and a daughter.

Zeenat Aman – Mazhar Khan

There is something about beautiful, intelligent and super sexy women, particularly in the 70’s era. Zeenat Aman was a spell-bearer for this brigade. He had a beautiful body that she never shied away from showing off. She had a mind of her own and she never thought to let it be known. She unfortunately, she was always attracted to men who were handsome and famous and never ever able to respect a woman for being an independent person.

Zeenat dated (and married) Sanjay Khan and was publicly abused by Sanjay and his first wife, Zarine Khan, in a hotel in Mumbai. The lady was also rumored to have had a falling out with Pakistani cricketer Imran Khan, but nothing concrete really came of it. In the early 1980s, Zeenat finally settled down with small-time actor Mazhar Khan, by whom she has two sons.

But this marriage was also very stressed, as Mazhar and her family beat Zeenat at her home. Zeenat claimed that he joined the beating session with his eldest son, who had been brainwashed by his in-laws.

The marriage ended with Mazhar Khan dying an alcoholic in 1998.

Dimple Kapadia – Rajesh Khanna

He really was the only superstar the country has ever known. Rajesh Khanna broke many hearts when he married ‘Bobby beauty’ Dimple Kapadia. He couldn’t have been a better match: she, a 16-year-old with gorgeous eyes, savoring success for the first time in her life, and he, a superstar eager to establish himself.

Not many know the exact reason the two broke up. Speculation blamed it on Rajesh Khanna’s sudden fall from stardom. A series of career failures for him played a major role in separating the two.

Although they were not actually divorced, the separation did occur. Over time, however, the bitterness wears off. Today, they are the proud parents of Twinkle Khanna (married to superstar Akshay Kumar) and Rinke Khanaa (married to Samit Saran).

Rekha-Mukesh Agarwal

Sometimes a love is the only love. That could very well be said of the perennial Rekha. Born Bhanupriya Ganesan, the illegitimate daughter of the southern morning idol, Shivaji Ganesan, when Rekha made her entrance in Hindi movies, she was a nasty, ugly duckling, though the star power was still there to be seen. Over time, she metamorphosed into a beautiful dark beauty, slender like a swan. Many insist that it was after she came into contact with a certain Mr. Bachchan.

Reams of paper have been printed speculating on the exact twists and turns of this triangle. If the palpable passion in their films is to be believed, the chemistry between the two was electrifying. But the marriage was not to be.

Rekha was rumored to have married Vinod Mehra, but that was speculation. She definitely married the businessman, Mukesh Aggarwal, but the marriage just didn’t work out for Rekha and her husband, completely disappointed, hanged himself to death.

Randhir Kapoor – Babita

He was the descendant of Kapoor khandan and she was a future actress. Randhir Kapoor and Babita made several movies together before deciding to get married. The early years are said to have been rosy, but tensions soon began to show. It is speculated that Babita, first cousin of the famous actress Sadhna, could not cope with the super stardom of the Kapoors and left the marriage with her two daughters at her expense. Although Randhir Kapoor and Babita never divorced, they never stayed together.


She was a fragile Bengali beauty like no one had ever seen. He was a talented lyricist and director like Bollywood would not see for a long, long time. Love blossomed but the marriage could not hold. He was known to be violent while she was a bit neurotic, according to reports.

Reena RoyMohsin Khan

70s star Reena Roy fell head over heels for Pakistani cricketer Mohsin Khan. So was hers, her handsome cricket lover who would fly to London, especially to meet her. The two married in 1983 only to soon split up. It was a heartbreaking divorce that saw Mohsin gain custody of their daughter from him. Much later, when Mohsin remarried, he relinquished the right to his daughter. Today, Reena Roy lives in Mumbai with her daughter, now renamed Sanam.

Sanjay Dutt – Rhea Pillai

Sanjay Dutt was the latest casanova of Bollywood dating actresses like Tina Munim, star Richa Sharma, Madhuri Dixit, Lisa Ray, Rhea Pillai, Nadia Durrani (London based) and eventually settled down with Manyata.

It is rumored that while Sanju baba had a maddening affair with Madhuri, he was actually married to three women, first his wife Richa Sharma, who died early in their marriage; then Rhea Pillai, who was by his side during his crazy days in jail. Unfortunately, it was a love that could not see a bright future. While adversity brought them closer together, good times couldn’t keep them together. While nothing really went wrong, so to speak, they just walked away…

The marriage ended in 2005. Sanjay is now married to Manyataa.


Here was another star couple who just couldn’t do it. When the two met in 1991, Amrita was a successful actress and he had only just started. But love and marriage blossomed from the obvious result. But the marriage was not easy. Saif’s parents did not approve of the union; so the two were secretly married. Of course, later the parents came. What is even more surprising is that the two remained married for almost 13 years and had two children, Sara and Ibrahim together. But a stormy relationship had to happen when a decision had to be made.

It would be safe to assume that Amrita was stuck in a happy (or read worldly) marriage while Saif was slowly recovering and found the relationship to range from dull to stifling. Over time, Saif’s name would be attached to such pretty faces as Riya Sen, Smriti Mishra, and Preity Zinta. Things completely changed when Saif puts Roza in.

Soon, it was splitville for the two of them when they finally divorced in 2004.

Nandita Das – Saumya Sen

The feisty and fearless actress has now seen two divorces, although there is more talk about the second. Saumya Sen, an advertising executive, married Nandita in 2002 and they remained married for seven years. But in 2009, Nandita ended the marriage citing an irreconcilable difference.

However, she recovered and is now married for the third time, this time to environmental businessman Subodh Maskara and has a four-month-old son with him named Vihaan.

Likewise, Hollywood has seen its own list of failed marriages: Eva Parker-Tony Parker;

Sandra Bullock as Jesse James; Jennifer Aniston-Brad Pitt; Kate Winslet-Sam Mendes;

Britney Spears-Kevin Federline; Imran Khan – Jemima Goldsmith and Rihanna – Chris Brown.

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