NEW DELHI: Veteran Bollywood actor Vinod Khanna who played daring roles on the screen lost his valiant fight against cancer and breathed his last in a Mumbai hospital on Thursday. He was 70.
As one who began his career in late 70s depicting roles of villains and dacoits in a number of hit Hindi movies, he effortlessly switched over to playing leading roles and rose to new heights in his career in Bollywood.It was Sunil Dutt who picked him up to play a supporting role in his film “Man Ka Meet” in 1968. The movie turned out to be a hit and there was no looking back for Vinod Khanna.
Born on October 6, 1946 in Peshawar, now in Pakistan, Vinod Khanna completed his education in Mumbai and met veteran actor Sunil Dutt in a party. Incidentally, both Sunil Dutt and Vinod Khanna also switched over to politics, While Mr. Dutt became a Congress Lok Sabha member from Mumbai, Vinod Khanna represented Gurdaspur in Punjab in the Lok Sabha for the BJP. He had also won the 2014 general polls from the same seat for the party.
In his career on the silver screen, he shared space with superstar Amitabh Bachchan but stood his ground and carved out his own identity as an actor who never overplayed his roles. There was a certain statement of underplay in his acting which became his style as well. At the height of his career in Bollywood, Vinod Khanna took a break to join Osho in his ashram in Pune and donned saffron robes for quite some time.
His roles in hit movies like “Aan Milo Sajna”, “Mera Gaon, Mera Desh” , “Saccha Jhoota” and off-beat film “Mere Apne” were greatly appreciated by the film buffs. Of late, he was seen in Salman Khan starrer “Dabang”. He is survived by his wife Kavita and sons Akshay and Rahul.