Shotgun greets Bachchan on 68th birthday

New Delhi: On the 68th birthday of his former rival and "old time friend" Amitabh Bachchan, actor-politician Shatrughan Sinha has congratulated him and invited the megastar to the premier of his movie `Rakta Charitra`.

"I wish him (Bachchan) a long and healthy life and pray that he continues to serve the country and his fans with his films for many more years," Sinha told reporters.

The two stars were the leading `jodi` (duo) in Bollywood, ruling the box-office during the 70`s with hits like `Kala Pathar`, `Shaan`, `Naseeb` and `Dostana` but had a public fall-out over recent years.

Sinha had reacted strongly when Bachchan did not invite him to son Abhishek`s wedding and had refused to accept the post-marriage tokens sent out to the film fraternity.

Sinha had also on occasions taken digs at Big B for bagging awards for himself and his family through his personal connections.

But Sinha says that the hatchet has been buried.

"Despite ups and down in our relations I hold Bachchan in high regard and always wished him well as a old time friend," said Sinha.

"Performance, character and consistency of Bachchan is remarkable and unmatched in terms of cinema, art and culture," he added.

Sinha said he would be happy if Bachchan comes to the premier of Ramgopal Verma`s `Rakta Charitra`.

The film made in Hindi, Telugu and Tamil will see Sinha play the role of a politician modelled on Telugu Desam leader and former Andhra Pradesh chief minister NT Rama Rao.


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