By Monisha G Kumar Last Updated:
The Kapoor clan is known as the patriarch of the Indian cinema. From the veteran, Prithviraj Kapoor to Ranbir Kapoor, every generation of the family is closely associated with Bollywood and has been giving their huge contribution to cinema. Names like Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor, Shashi Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, Randhir Kapoor are popular among the masses. But the lesser-known member of the Kapoor family, Rajiv Kapoor too was an integral part of the entertainment industry.
Youngest son of Raj Kapoor and younger brother to Randhir Kapoor and Rishi Kapoor, Rajiv Kapoor had ventured into acting in the 1980s. His early films didn’t do well and he was cast as the lead in the 1985 social drama, Ram Teri Ganga Maili. Although the film was a blockbuster but couldn’t do much to take off Rajiv’s acting career. But it didn’t deter his spirit and he had gone on to direct Madhuri Dixit starrer Prem Granth, which had failed miserably at the box office. Talking about Rajiv’s personal life, he was married to an architect, Aarti Sabharwal but the two had gotten divorced two years later. On February 9, 2021, Rajiv had departed for his heavenly abode after suffering a heart attack.
Rajiv Kapoor’s death had shattered his elder brother, Randhir Kapoor, who had already lost his younger brother, Rishi Kapoor in 2020. For Randhir Kapoor, Rajiv was more like a son than brother. We recently stumbled upon an unseen picture of Randhir Kapoor with Rajiv Kapoor from a party and the picture exuded the love and care Randhir had for Rajeev. In an interview with the Times Of India, screenwriter, Rumy Jaffery had talked about the bond between the two brothers and had said, “Rajiv Kapoor was like all the other popular Kapoor brothers--talented and a good human being. All three brothers shared a great bond. In fact, for Daboo ji (Randhir), Chimpu was more like a son than a brother.”
Rajiv Kapoor had suffered a cardiac arrest and was rushed to Inlaks Hospital, where he was declared brought dead. It was Randhir Kapoor, who had confirmed the news of Rajiv’s untimely death. In an interview with ETimes, Randhir Kapoor had talked about the pain of losing his three siblings. The actor had shared that his brother, Rajiv had no prior medical condition. Randhir had said, "I am left alone in this house. Rajiv was a very gentle and extremely jovial person. It is so tough to believe that he is gone. He had no medical history. His health was simply fine; he had no problems whatsoever. I don't know what's happening. I was equally close to Rishi and Rajiv. I have lost four people from my family--my mother Krishna Kapoor (October 2018), eldest sister Ritu (January 14, 2020), Rishi and now Rajiv. These four were my central core, with whom I did most of my talking."
In an old interview with Leheren, Rajiv Kapoor had looked back on his professional journey in Bollywood and had reflected on what had gone wrong for him. Rajiv Kapoor had stated that people on the streets would first call him Shammi Kapoor, then Rishi Kapoor (his brother), and then Rajiv Kapoor. In his words, "It's a curious thing, but I look a lot like my uncle. Everyone who worked on the film; including the technicians, the director, the choreographer, the music director; they tried to portray my character like Shammi uncle. Because they'd all worked with him before, they made me behave like him. I was a young lad then, so I went with the flow. They used to brainwash me. As I grew older, and gained more experience, I realised that I should have crafted my own space."
Rajiv Kapoor's elder brother, Rishi Kapoor, who had bid farewell to us on April 30, 2020, had written about Rajiv Kapoor in his autobiography Khullam Khulla: Rishi Kapoor Uncensored. He had written, "I worry a lot about Chimpu (Rajiv's nickname) and feel sad that he has never been able to realize his true potential. He is the most talented of us and has an uncanny ear for music. He plays the piano superbly without ever learning it."
Rajiv was excited for his comeback with Ashutosh and Sunita Gowariker’s film, Toolsidas Junior. Your presence will be missed, Rajiv ji!
Known as the first family of Bollywood, the Kapoor clan is the patriarch of Hindi cinema. Starting from the veteran actor, Prithviraj Kapoor to Ranbir Kapoor, the entire Kapoor family is whole-heartedly devoted in the entertainment business. Whether it is acting, producing or directing, this Bollywood family has been rulingRead More