Senior actor and politician Vinod Khanna died at 70 at a hospital in Mumbai. He succumbed to advanced bladder carcinoma (bladder cancer). Vinod Khanna had very strong and established career in Bollywood and while at professional peak, he quit Bollywood to everyone’s surprise.
In an old interview with TOI Khanna spoke about how Bollywood happened and why did he quit suddenly to follow Osho.
How Bollywood happened: ”It was in college that I met Gitanjali (his first wife). We liked each other and started going steady. I almost lost my chance to enter Bollywood: While at a party, I chanced upon Sunil Dutt, who was in the process of making a movie with two heroes, one of whom would be his brother. He offered me the other role.” He also spoke about his father threatened to shoot him with a gun if he spoke about joining Bollywood.
On why he suddenly left Bollywood while he was at his peak: ”I have always been a seeker. In the film industry, I had money, glamour, fame but wondered now what? Initially, I visited Osho’s ashram in Pune every weekend. I even diverted shooting schedules to Pune. I was finally initiated on December 31, 1975. When I announced my retirement from films, nobody believed me.”
”I was Osho’s mali: I am one of the few Indians to have stayed with Osho in Rajneeshpuram, the city he built in America. I spent four years with Osho. I was his gardener, I cleaned the toilets, I did the dishes, and his clothes were tried out on me because we were, physically, of the same stature.”
Once he realized that his family was being affected by his actions he decided to come back, but by then he and his wife has decided about the divorce.
He has done over 100 films, last one being Shah Rukh Khan starrer Dilwale.