More than 6 decades ago, a young man from Sahnewal, Punjab, left the comfort of his home and landed in an unknown city that never sleeps, Mumbai. All he had by his side was his mother’s love, father’s blessings and big dreams. Although he was immensely talented, extremely good looking and ready to work hard, he went through his own phase of struggle, doing tedious jobs, working extra hours to meet ends, sleeping in garages and what not! But he did not ever give up. He kept his spirits up, followed his dreams and finally in 1960, he had his first film release, Dil Bhi Tera Hum Bhi Tere, under the direction of Arjun Hingorani. A star was born that day, known as Dharmendra, and he still shines bright.
Since his first break-through in 1960, Dharamji is still at work today, at the age of 85. He is gearing up for the second installment of the family film Apne 2, with his sons, Sunny Deol, Bobby Deol and grandson, Karan Deol. He has a legacy of over 300 films to his credit; his box office success is still unmatched and unbeatable. His range in acting, excelling in every genre, is a testament of his craft. The sincerity and dedication he has for his work is visible in everything he does.
And with that, Dharamji has gathered millions of ardent admirers, fans, stans and followers along the way. Because Dharamji is not just an actor but an idol and an ideal, an inspiration, and it is not far fetching to say people literally worship him. It’s a legend in itself that people in Ramanagar, who saw him shoot Sholay, called him “Devaru Manushya” (God’s own man). And this is not merely because he is a legendary superstar; but because he is this genuine person Dharamji, a humble, simple and gracious man with a big heart. Hence, fans often feel so grateful to Dharamji for not only entertaining them with his films but for being so inspiring, loving and giving. They always want to do something for their dear Dharamji who has given them so much.
Tia Rao is an academician, lives in the US and has written this article on behalf of “Dharmendra Ek Anmol Ratan International Fans Club”.
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