{ Page-Title / Story-Title }

Article Hindi

Film industry turns up to pay respects to Vinod Khanna at prayer meet

Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan and Amitabh Bachchan lead industry stalwarts at condolence meeting for the late star.

Kavita Khanna with son Sakshi and daughter Shraddha. All Photos: Shutterbugs Images

Our Correspondent

After Rishi Kapoor's tweet venting about the absence of present-day stars at Vinod Khanna's funeral, the industry turned up in strength at the prayer meeting held by the bereaved family in Mumbai today.

Khanna, who died aged 70 on 27 April, was an iconic matinee idol of the 1970s. He had been battling cancer of the urinary bladder in his last years.

The prayer meeting, held by the family at the Nehru Centre in Worli, central Mumbai, saw a large section of the Hindi film industry in attendance. Superstars Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan, who had missed the funeral, were among the early arrivals. Aamir was accompanied by wife Kiran Rao. Shah Rukh, who was at a TEDx talk when Khanna passed away, offered his condolences to the family.

Kiran Rao and Aamir Khan arrive at the Nehru Centre
Shah Rukh Khan assists Farida Jalal to her car


Salman, the third Khan, busy as he is with the shooting for Tiger Zinda Hai, was a notable absentee. But he was represented by brother Arbaaz Khan. Malaika Arora, Arbaaz Khan's estranged wife, too was at the prayer meeting, though not with Arbaaz.

Khanna's long-time colleague and rival Amitabh Bachchan and his son and daughter-in-law, Abhishek and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, were there as were director Rakesh Roshan and son Hrithik.

Hrithik Roshan

Khanna's peers showed solidarity with the late star's family by making their presence felt. Prem Chopra, Javed Akhtar, Shakti Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit Nene, Sridevi and director Ramesh Sippy were among the stalwarts who arrived to pay their respects. Screenwriter Honey Irani, too, made a rare public appearance. Irani had written the script and story for the Vinod Khanna-starrer Parampara (1993).

Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, daughter and filmmaker Pooja Bhatt, and veteran actor Suresh Oberoi also made an appearance. While Rishi Kapoor was a notable absentee, his younger brother Rajiv Kapoor attended the prayer meeting with nephews Aadar and Armaan Jain.

The younger generation of the industry also paid its respects to the late actor. Filmmakers Zoya Akhtar, Farhan Akhtar, Anurag Kashyap and Ashutosh Gowariker and actor Sonu Sood were among those who joined the family in praying for Khanna's soul.

Zoya and Farhan Akhtar arrive with their mother Honey Irani

While the family was visibly disconsolate, the meeting began with a touching tribute to Vinod Khanna. With the family seated beside the stage, a montage of Khanna's photographs played in the background, reminding attendees of the grace, charm and good looks he possessed.

A touching moment was when the song 'Aaj Jaane Ki Zidd Na Karo' played. The song was a particular favourite of Khanna's, who would often sing it to wife Kavita Khanna at parties.

Obituary: Vinod Khanna, the reluctant star

Seeing how Khanna was a sitting MP from Gurdaspur in Punjab with the Bharatiya Janata Party, several prominent politicians and businessmen also attended the prayer meet. Former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh was present, as was Congress member and actress Nagma. Industrialist Mukesh Ambani's sons Anant and Akash represented their father and offered their condolences to the family. Anil Ambani arrived later with wife Tina to offer his condolences.