By Darshana Sugathan Last Updated:
In most of the Bollywood movies, the hero gets his true love in the end and they live 'happily ever after'. The battle of love is won after crossing many hurdles, like opposition from parents, a typical villain aiming at the girlfriend, and many other problems. As we all love to see happy endings, our tinsel town keeps providing us with a lot of them, on a frequent basis. But, it is not just in the movies where our celebs show us such examples of true love and strong commitment.
Bollywood has a lot of dilwale, who took their dulhaniyas away despite facing the big challenge of belonging to different religious backgrounds. So, let us take a look at some of the most powerful and famous inter-religious marriages in Bollywood.
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Bollywood’s 'Mr. Perfectionist', Aamir Khan, fell in love with Kiran Rao, a Brahmin from Bangalore. They tied the knot in 2005. While they did set an example by marrying despite the religion difference, the two were an inspiration to a lot of couples as they announced the birth of their son, Azad in 2011, whom they welcomed in their lives with the help of surrogacy.
Indian cinema’s king of romance, Shah Rukh Khan, was no less romantic in his personal life. He fell in love with Gauri Chibber, who belonged to a Hindu Brahmin family. And, the disagreements and strong resistance from her family could not stop our King Khan from believing in his love. The two got married in 1991 and have been one of the best examples of fidelity in marriage.
The couple has an interesting love story, which is no less than any masala Bollywood flick. The two ran away when Sohail’s first movie as a director, Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya, was released. They first married as per the Arya Samaj rituals, since Seema is a Punjabi. Later in the evening, they had a nikah. The two were later accepted by their families and are blessed with two sons.
The duo on the sets of Main Hoon Naa, and fell in love with each other in no time. They not only faced the hurdle of religious difference, but the unusual age difference as well. Farah is eight years older than Shirish. But, the two fought all the odds and got married in 2004.
They fell in love during the making of Dil Chahta Hai, and got married after a three-year-long relationship. The two belonged to different religious backgrounds, and Adhuna was six years elder to Farhan as well. They have two daughters and the couple is separated now.
The latest to join the club are Soha Ali Khan and Kunal Khemu, who dated each other for a long time before they got married, on January 25, 2014. The couple met on the sets of Dhoondthe Reh Jaoge (2009) and fell in love. They were even in a live-in relationship for some time before tying the knot.
Just like his brother, even Arbaaz fell in love with a non-Muslim girl, Malaika Arora. However, Arbaaz did not follow Sohail's footsteps when it came to marrying his ladylove. Rather, he took permission from Malaika’s mother and the two had a Christian wedding. The couple is now divorced!
Amrita followed the footsteps of her sister Malaika, and married a Muslim guy, Shakeel Ladak. Amrita’s mother is a Catholic while her father is a Punjabi. So, to honour all the cultures they belong to, the couple got married in three different styles- Christian, Muslim and Punjabi.
This was one of the most talked-about weddings of Bollywood. While many people expected that the actress will change her religion after marriage, but just like her mother-in-law, Sharmila Tagore, she too set an example by remaining a Hindu. The two were blessed with a baby boy named Taimur in 2016.
Born into a Punjabi Brahmin family, Atul Agnihotri, married Alvira Khan, Salman Khan’s sister. Religion did not matter when the couple fell in love, and now they are parents of two children.
This super-cute couple of Bollywood is yet another very beautiful example of the inter-faith marriage. Genelia is a Mangalorean Catholic and Riteish is a Maharashtrian Hindu. The two got married in 2012, in both Maharashtrian and Christian style, so as to show respect to each other’s traditions. They are blessed with two baby boys.
Maria, who is a Christian met the love of her life, Arshad Warsi, who is a Muslim, in 1991. The two got married on February 14, 1999. They are blessed with a son and a daughter.
Nargis was impressed with Sunil Dutt due to his brave act, during the shooting of Mother India, when the fire broke out on the sets and he saved her. After marrying Sunil Dutt, she converted to Hinduism and changed her name to Nirmala Dutt.
Maanyata, whose real name is Dilnawaz Sheikh, entered Sanjay’s life in 2006, through a common friend. She won his heart and they soon got married despite different religious backgrounds and a whopping 19-year-old age gap.
The duo met during the rehearsal of a play, back in 1975. They not only belonged to different religions, but Naseeruddin Shah had a daughter from his first marriage as well. However, this ‘truly in love’ couple got married and certainly lived happily thereafter.
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Her screen name was Neha, and they met a short while after her first movie Kareeb, was released in 1998. The duo got married in 2006 and are blessed with a daughter.
Mumtaz, the glorious actress of yesteryear, left her career during the peak and got married to her love interest Mayur Madhvani on May 29, 1974. They have two daughters, Natasha and Tanya. And, Natasha is married to the Bollywood actor, Fardeen Khan.
The couple met on the sets of Kalank Ka Tika, and got married in 1986. Zarina is a Muslim and is six years older than Aditya, who is a Hindu by religion. However, these issues were never a problem for them. In fact, even their families were quite supportive of this relationship and they are still together.
Suniel Shetty met Mana Qadri when she was just 17. Mana is a Muslim, while Suniel is a Hindu belonging to southern part of India. After a 9-year-long relationship, the couple got married in 1991.
Nadira Zaheer met Raj Babbar in 1975, in the National School of Drama. At that time, she was already an established actor-director, while he was just a student. Their romance, which blossomed during the play, Jasma Odan, turned into marriage just five months after it started.
Their love story seemed quite unbelievable to many in the beginning, as Sangeeta was dating Salman Khan at that time and Azharuddin was already married. After a long period of denial, the two finally tied the knot in 1996, as he divorced his first wife. Azhar and Sangeeta got divorced in 2010.
The couple met in St.Xavier’s College, Mumbai, when they were actively involved in theatre. Rupa was his junior in college. Later the couple got married and had two daughters, Shaista and Sanaa.
Zayed Khan married his childhood girlfriend, Malaika Parekh. The couple got married in 2005, and have two children now.
When this Bollywood actress was linked up with a Pakistani cricketer, there obviously were a lot of issues. But, the couple got married in 1983, and later shifted to Bombay. However, the marriage did not last for long and they later got divorced.
Even though the couple recently parted ways, they were once an example of true love and commitment. They got married in 2000 and got divorced in 2014. They have two sons.
They are the latest entrants on our list of Bollywood couples who had an interfaith marriage. The 90s heroine, Urmila Matondkar got married quite recently to her boyfriend, Mir Mohsin Akhtar in a private ceremony. While Urmila is a Hindu, her husband is a Kashmiri Muslim. Even the fact that Urmila is 10 years his senior did not deter him, and they tied the knot.
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As Bollywood has always inspired us in various aspects of life, these weddings of the tinsel town certainly prove to us that love knows no restrictions and religion!