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As the world observes Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s birth anniversary on January 21, it’s clear that his family, colleagues and fans are still struggling to gain closure after his tragic death on June 14, 2020. He would have turned 36 today.
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Actress Rhea Chakraborty, who dated the actor for a few years, paid tribute by sharing a throwback video of herself with him on Instagram, captioning it, "Miss you so much.", happily goofing around in a gym before finally posing together. Rhea set the video to Pink Floyd's 'Wish You Were Here'. Taking to her Insta stories, Rhea dropped a never-before-seen throwback picture with Sushant with a heart emoticon.
Image Credit: Insta/
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Actress Anushka Sharma posted an image of a smiling Sushant Singh Rajput on her Instagram page and wrote 'In Remembrance'. The two have worked together for 'PK' starring Aamir Khan.
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The ‘Kai Po Che’ actor, whose death is still under investigation with the Central Bureau of Investigation, continues to leave a dark void. Answers continue to elude his fans, but his sudden death clearly triggered dialogues on Bollywood’s toxic working culture and how difficult it is for outsiders to crack the world of Hindi entertainment. It can be safely said that no actor’s demise in Bollywood has seen so many fans clamouring for answers and justice. His demise also kick-started a dialogue on the importance of mental health in India, especially among those who live under the spotlight. His death continues to rattle Bollywood movie fans and industry insiders. Nods and tributes from his industry colleagues came trickling in today.
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Just like Anushka Sharma, actress Vaani Kapoor also took to her social media to pay tribute and respect to Rajput on his birth anniversary this year.
Image Credit: Insta/ _vaanikapoor_
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Indian National Award-winning actress Kangana Ranaut continued her tradition of paying tribute to Rajput. Last year, she was one of the first few stars to pay her respects for Rajput. Ranaut, who was at the forefront demanding justice for Rajput’s death, claimed she regretted not being there for the actor when he needed her help. Ranaut had consistently floated a theory that Rajput was treated badly in Bollywood and that he was driven to suicide by powerful producers who sidelined him and tried to stall his career. “Dear Sushant, movie mafia banned you bullied you and harassed you, many times on social media you asked for help and I regret not being there for you. I wish I didn’t assume you are strong enough to handle mafia torture on your own. I wish ... Happy Birthday dear one #SushantDay,” tweeted Ranaut last year. This year around, she shared a picture of him with a telescope and wrote: 'Happy birthday to this star in the sky'. It was widely believed that Rajput loved astronomy and his home in Mumbai had top-end telescopes.
Image Credit: Instagram/KanganaRanaut
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Rajput's sister Shweta Singh Kirti, who has always fought for closure and justice after the tragedy struck, labelled today as 'Sushant Day'. She wrote a stirring note in memory of her late brother this year. She also shared a video with visuals. The music of his romance 'Kedarnath' played along with the video. She also reminded his army of fans that his legacy will live on forever. A day earlier, she had also requested his fans to light a candle in his memory.
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Casting director Mukesh Chhabra posted an image of the two together on the occasion of Rajput's birth anniversary today. He wrote an emotionally-charged note claiming that they don't make them like Sushant anymore and that he missed him tremendously.
Image Credit: Instagram/MukeshChabra
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Rajput’s life was a testament to an industry outsider courting fame and adulation, but crashing and burning under the weight of being in the public eye. His short, but strong career was laden with a string of stirring films. He burst into the Bollywood with a spectacularly-performed drama ‘Kai Po Che’ in 2013. Directed by Abhishek Kapoor, who later worked with the actor on ‘Kedarnath, the movie made him an instant superstar with many comparing his screen presence and impish charm to Shah Rukh Khan’s debut.
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The Patna-born actor did not boast any powerful industry connections nor was her born into an acting dynasty. But he made it on his own steam with a clutch of meaningful films such as ‘Chhichhore’ and ‘Shudh Desi Romance’.
Image Credit: Yash Raj Films
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Sushant Singh Rajput’s world did not end with acting in films alone. He was a profound thinker and kept evolving as a human. He loved studying stars and planets and took a keen interest in reading books. After his death, his family sporadically talks about the person behind the superstar. Recently, his sister shared an intimate handwritten note written by Rajput. “I think I spent 30 years of my life, trying to become something. I wanted to become good at things. I wanted to become good at tennis and school and grades. …. And everything, I viewed in that perspective. I am not ok the way I am but if I got good at things... I realised I had the game wrong.” He signed off the post writing, “Because the game was always to find out what I already was.”
Image Credit: PTI
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His last release was ‘Dil Bechara’, a Hindi adaptation of the Hollywood movie ‘The Fault In Our Stars’. It was released posthumously and opened to good reviews.