Mumbai: Bollywood is a strange land with unpredictability written all over it – a place where an actor’s fate is sealed every Friday.
Do you remember Raj Kiran? The actor, who essayed Rishi Kapoor’s pre-incarnation in 80’s super hit ‘Karz’ and was associated with hits like ‘Arth’, ‘Kaagaz Ki Nao’ and ‘Ghar Ho To Aisa’ and after a few flops faded into thin oblivion.
Raj Kiran, who hit a rough patch and was later assumed dead by friends, is very much alive, living in a mental asylum and fending for himself, with nobody by his side.
Apparently, Rishi Kapoor learnt where Raj is living in - at an Atlanta based sanitarium.
However, Rishi got to know of Raj’s whereabouts through his brother Govind Mehtani. Talking to a daily, an emotionally charged Rishi said, “I’ve been wondering where Raj had disappeared. The question was haunting me for a very long time. Then these rumours of Raj being no more began doing the rounds. I was really disturbed. How can a colleague with whom I shared some really good times, just vanish from the face of earth? I decided to look up Raj`s elder brother Govind Mehtani to find out about Raj.”
“I was so relieved when Govind told me Raj was alive. But he was confined to an institution in Atlanta due to health problems. Yes, apparently, he looks after his own treatment by working within the institution. It`s a heart-rending situation for an actor who was so successful at one time. But I`m just happy to know he`s alive. Raj was very well read and clever with his repartees. I used to enjoy our sparring sessions when we worked together. Though he`s younger to me, we always got along really well. I miss him,” he said.
It is believed that Raj’s wife with their son abandoned him when he needed them the most. In fact, his rest of the family also deserted him.
Raj reportedly went through a spate of domestic crisis which left him emotionally scarred. He was institutionalised in India before he left for the US.
Raj’s family and his brothers are not in touch with him. When Rishi asked Govind for Raj's contact number, Govind didn't have it!
“I wanted to speak to Raj and visit him in Atlanta. But I couldn't get his contact number. I'm definitely going to visit him and urge him to return home. Though Raj has not been working for a long time, he invested well. So he was not financially challenged by his illness,” added Rishi.
Meanwhile, Rishi is determined to bring Raj Kiran back to Mumbai and to Bollywood as the actor finally added, “I want him to know we care for him. We want him back where he belongs. I'll personally help him get roles and re-establish himself in Bollywood.”