Stars shine up above the blue sky, but a legendary such as Dilip Kumar will now shine like a ‘Jugnu’ in the expanse from now. It is a film of his by the same name that brought him name and fame in the Indian cinema. It was from this film that his popularity continued to increase and he took over the world of cinema.
Born in Kissa Khawani Bazaar in Peshawar of Pakistan, he died in India at a ripe old age of 98 years. He was awarded the Padma Vibhushan of India in the year 1991 and Pakistan’s Nishan-i-Imtiyaz in 1994. His film life must have underwent several phases of ‘jawar bhata’, but he remained the Mughal-e-Azam of cinema.
What mesmerised me in Mughal-e-Azam was his depiction of Prince Salim. His dialogue delivery and rebel nature against Emperor Akbar were worth watching. Further, his speech at the Albert Hall remains unforgettable for his avid audience.
He lived as an actor and died like a fighter. Just as the square or a rectangle that has diagonals of equal length, so was his personality, not very different from geometrical measurements.
“There are stars, some even bigger than him, but no better actors. In his range, depth and integrity, Dilip Kumar matched Hollywood’s great Marlon Brando or Japanese star Toshiro Mifune or Italian legend Marcello Mastroianni,” writes BBC in its obituary.