Waheeda Rehman And Guru Dutt's Timeless Tale Of Love, He Fell For Her Charm Despite Being Married

Waheeda Rehman and Guru Dutt's timeless tale of love and devotion is an inspiration for generations. Let's have a look at the relationship they shared with each other.


By Monisha G Kumar Last Updated:


Waheeda Rehman And Guru Dutt's Timeless Tale Of Love, He Fell For Her Charm Despite Being Married

Waheeda Rehman is one of the most accomplished actresses of the 50s, 60s and 70s. In a career spanning over five decades, Waheeda is an inspiration to millions. Born on February 3, 1938, to a Deccani Muslim family in Tamil Nadu, Waheeda dreamt of becoming a doctor. However, due to her family’s financial struggles, the young Waheeda accepted the film offers she got.

Though Waheeda Rehman made her acting debut with the Telugu film, Rojulu Marayi in 1955, the actress rose to prominence after she collaborated with filmmaker, Guru Dutt in cult classics like Pyaasa, Kaagaz Ke Phool, Chaudhvin Ka Chand and Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam. Though Guru Dutt and Waheeda’s on-screen chemistry was admired by many, their off-screen camaraderie bloomed into an unforgettable love story.

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When Guru Dutt met Waheeda Rehman for the first time


Waheeda began her career in many South Indian films, and her stellar acting caught Guru Dutt’s eye. He brought her to Bombay and cast her as ‘Kamini’ opposite Dev Anand in the film, C.I.D. Guru was smitten by Waheeda's charm, and she was mesmerised by his dedication towards his craft. 

Waheeda Rehman and Guru Dutt’s love story


Before meeting Waheeda, Guru Dutt was already married to singer, Geeta Dutt, and the couple had three children, Tarun Dutt, Arun Dutt and Nina Dutt. While Geeta chose to devote more time to her family, Guru Dutt immersed himself completely in his work, with hardly any time or energy left to give to his family. As a result, his marriage with Geeta started sinking.

Guru and Geeta

It was during that time when Guru Dutt met the mesmerising Waheeda Rehman. After C.I.D., Guru Dutt cast Waheeda in her first lead role in the film Pyaasa, which is still considered one of their greatest films ever.


Waheeda considered Guru as her mentor which eventually turned into a very strong bond. Waheeda and Guru Dutt’s collaboration continued in films like 12 O’Clock, Kaagaz Ke Phool, and Chaudhvin Ka Chand. Their last film together was the romantic drama, Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam, which portrayed a love triangle between Waheeda Rehman, Guru Dutt and Meena Kumari.

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Guru Dutt’s affair with Waheeda Rehman disrupted his marriage with Geeta Dutt


Guru Dutt’s marital life was already having problems. He could hardly spend any time at home because of his love towards cinema. On top of it, his closeness with Waheeda Rehman further distanced him from Geeta. Guru was also facing financial troubles at that time. Despite all of this, Guru Dutt found solace in his work.


Guru Dutt and Waheeda Rehman’s love and admiration were reflected in their films. In Nasreen Munni Kabir’s book, Guru Dutt: A Life in Cinema, Waheeda talked about Guru Dutt and stated:

“Guru Dutt was very sensitive, but also very sensible. He never let his personal feelings affect our professional relationship.”


When Waheeda Rehman distanced herself from Guru Dutt

Guru Dutt’s tumultuous marriage and financial constraints turned him into an alcoholic. It was then reported that Waheeda, too, distanced herself from him owing to his alcoholism, anxiety and depression attacks. On the night of October 10, 1964, he took sleeping pills after consuming alcohol. The actor reportedly passed away due to an overdose of sleeping pills with alcohol.


It was reported by many publications that Guru Dutt committed suicide after he parted ways with Waheeda. In a throwback interview, Lalitha Lajmi (Guru Dutt's sister) revealed that Waheeda was never the reason behind Guru Dutt’s death. Talking about the same, she stated:

“She’s been unnecessarily blamed for his disturbed marriage. Maybe, Guru Dutt saw a muse in Waheeda. Love is a difficult emotion to define. Professionally, Waheeda and Guru Dutt had moved away much before he passed away.”

Waheeda Rehman was shattered by Guru Dutt’s death


Waheeda Rehman was shattered by the news of Guru Dutt’s death, and it took many years to come to terms with it. He was not just a director for her but a partner and a mentor who always made her feel that she could do anything.

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It was Guru Dutt who made Waheeda a superstar as everyone in the Hindi film industry thought that she was a stubborn actress who would not last in the industry. However, the rather impatient Guru never lost his cool at her as he was sure about her capabilities. In Firoze Rangoonwalla’s book, Guru Dutt, 1925-1965: A Monograph, Waheeda talked about Guru’s death and stated:

“In his death the film industry has lost a great director, humanity has lost a man of compassion and I have lost a great friend who had made the first and the greatest contribution to my success as a film artiste. I will always be grateful to him for this. I could not save him; but I sincerely wished that I could............or at least that someone else could.”


Waheeda Rehman and Guru Dutt’s relationship raised many questions in people’s minds. Some stated that she was his muse; others revealed that he was hopelessly in love with her, and it was the main reason for his broken marriage. In an old interview, Waheeda herself shed some light on their relationship and stated:

“Our love was not perfect, but it was real. It was a love born out of our passion for cinema and our desire to create something beautiful together."


Be it her devotion towards her guru or their passion for cinema, Waheeda Rehman and Guru Dutt’s timeless love will be lived through the films they made together. Their love for art paved the way for a beautiful relationship and will always be etched in everyone’s hearts forever.

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