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Dev AnandDev Anand was desperately in love with Zeenat Aman
27th Sept 2007  09.00 IST
By Agencies  

Evergreen hero Dev Anand was desperately in love with Zeenat Aman but was heart broken before a 'date' with her when he found Raj Kapoor throwing his arms around her at a party.

"My heart broken to pieces.... I wanted to leave the party at once and go off somewhere alone, to just be myself, so that I could swallow the humiliation thrust on my ego," Dev Anand says in his autobiography "Romancing With Life".

The octogenarian Bollywood hero's autobiography was released by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in the Capital on Wednesday.

"Zeenat and I started being linked to each other in the magazines and newspapers that people hungry for gossip love to read. In the subconscious, we had become emotionally attached to each other," Anand says.

Time moved on and one day he felt that he was desperately in love with Zeenat and wanted to say so to her at a very special, exclusive place meant for romance. "I pick her up and together we went to a party. The first person who greeted Zeenat was a drunken Raj Kapoor with a gallant drawl who threw his arms around her," Anand says.

"A struggle within me transformed itself into a to-hell-with-it-all attitude and prompted me to say goodbye to a relationship which, though it had been non-committal emotionally on both sides, had been honest all the same," he says.

The evening, he says, had delivered a blow to his personality, and his dominating spirit. "I had decided on the spur of the movement to tell Zeenat for the first time how much I loved her. And that there was an idea in my mind of another story that would put her on a pedestal as never before, the highest so far. But that was never to be," the evergreen hero says.

In his autobiography, said to be the first ever full-fledged memoir by a leading Bollywood star, Anand tells his remarkable life story, no less dramatic and gripping than any of his films. It carries recollections from Dev's youth in 1930 in Gurdaspur and Lahore, his years of struggle in 1940s in Bombay, his friendship with Guru Dutt and his doomed romance with Surayya. The star also writes about his marriage to Kalpana Kartik, his relationship with his brothers Chetan and Vijay Anand as also his compatriots Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor.

Anand however quickly detached himself from Zeenat. "And so be it! I quickly detached myself. I had blundered, taking too many things for granted. There was no need for me to let any rancour remain in my mind against Zeenat. I had prepared her for the world and she was free to go into the arms of anyone who would help her further her ambitious dreams," he writes.

"A group of chanting devotees was passing by my car- Hare Krishna Hare Krishna..I closed my eyes. Zeenat still remained beautiful in my eyes, with an honest soul. And Raj a passionate filmmaker...An idea of a new film was slowly coming into focus," he writes.

"Writing an autobiography is tougher when you are a public figure that the world has known and admired for over six decades and has looked up as a larger-than-life hero. Unless I take my readers to a plane of absolute adoration for me as they read my book, the attempt will not have been worth it. And yet, my life has been an open book to my fans, and they must not feel that I am hiding something or glossing over some unsavoury bumps now that I have set out to write my autobiography," Anand writes.

"This is why untarnished truth and complete honesty are the first prerequisite to my writing about myself, rife as they are with the dangers of annoying or angering a few people who have rubbed shoulders with me on my journey along the path of life," Dev Anand says in the preface to the biography.

"On some occasions, I have been accused of being narcissistic, and since this book is about me, this is perhaps a charge I should answer to before I proceed," the star writes. When he was born, 'Dharam' was prefixed to his 'Dev' as ordained by the family pandit. "I hung on to the 'Dharam' part of my name all through my academic career. But as I stepped out into the world on my own to seek a foothold and recognition for myself, I dispensed with the 'Dharam' part of my name and added Anand, my family surname to my identity," the star says.

Dev Anand
Zeenat Aman
Raj Kapoor
Dilip Kumar

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