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Deepak Tijori

Deepak Tijori is an Indian film director and actor who works in Bollywood and Gujarati films and is well known for his supporting roles in Aashiqui, Khiladi, Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar, Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, Anjaam, Ghulam, and Badshah. Before embarking on a career in Bollywood, Tijori received his college education from Narsee Monjee College in his hometown Mumbai. While in college, Tijori joined an amateur theatre group whose members included Aamir Khan, Ashutosh Gowariker, Paresh Rawal and Vipul Shah. His friends influenced him to pursue a career in film acting. During this time, he also worked for Cine Blitz magazine and also as a hotel manager. Tijori’s first important role in Bollywood came when Mahesh Bhatt cast him to play the role of the protagonist’s friend in his romantic drama Aashiqui. The film was a commercial success and his hand gestures in the film were widely copied by the youth of the time. He then proceeded to play minor roles in Afsana Pyar Ka, and Kaun Kare Kurbanie. In the same year, he was cast again by Mahesh Bhatt to play the supporting roles in two of his films. These were the romantic drama Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin and the romantic thriller Sadak. Then in 1992, he featured in Abbas-Mustan’s suspense thriller Khiladi alongside Akshay Kumar, Ayesha Jhulka, and Sabeeha and this film went on to become a commercial success. His next important role was in the Mansoor Khan directed coming-of-age sports drama Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar alongside Aamir Khan, in which Tijori played the role of Shekhar Malhotra, a successful and arrogant cyclist who wins the Inter-School Championship every year. This film also went on to become a major success and was ranked ninth in Bollywood’s top 10 college movies list by Rediff.com. Tijori further continued to appear in several top grossing Bollywood films before embarking on a directorial career of his own. He made his directorial debut in 2003, with an adult film about male strippers called Oops!. He was also credited as the producer and writer although the film was considered controversial because of the subject matter and initially faced troubles with the Central Board of Film Certification. His next directorial venture was Fareb starring shilpa Shetty and Shamita Shetty. Like his previous film, Fareb also had troubles with the censor board and was given a certificate implying that it was to be viewed only by adult audiences. It also received negative reviews. In the same year, he directed the thriller Khamoshh…  Khauff Ki Raat, which also received mixed reviews. The following year, Tijori directed the comedy Tom, Dick, and Harry which in a review for India Today by Anupama Chopra was called the year’s worst film. The rest of Tijori’s directorial career followed suit and was riddled with adult films that struggled to get a good censor rating and problems with the cast and producers. Therefore, Do Lafzon Ki Kahani starring Randeep Hooda was Tijori’s last directorial project. He then went on to play the role of a house mate in the first season of Bigg Boss. During Tijori’s stay at the Bigg Boss House, his wife Shivani Tijori sent text messages to her friends, family members, and media-persons to help Tijori in getting out of the house. This resulted in him being evicted from the house.

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Neha Dhupia

Neha Dhupia, born August 27, 1980 is an Indian actress and model who works in Hindi, Punjabi, Telugu, Malayalam, and Japanese films. Dhupia made her acting debut in a play in New Delhi called Graffiti. Thereafter, she appeared in a music video for Indipop band Euphoria and modeled for advertisement campaigns. She then appeared in the TV serial Rajdhani. In 2002, she participated in the Femina Miss India pageant, where she was crowned as Miss Universe India 2002. She was subsequently sent to the Miss Universe 2002 pageant in Puerto Rico where she placed in the top 10. After placing the pageant, Dhupia intended to pursue a career in the INdian Foreign Service, but turned to acting instead. Her Bollywood debut then came with the 2003 film Qayamat: City Under Threat, which had an average performance at the box office. She rose to fame with her role in Julie and then appeared in Sheesha in a dual role of twin sisters but it did not do well at the box office. She then starred in films such as Kyaa Kool Hai Hum and Shootout at Lokhandwala which did well at the box office. She then featured in a segment of the anthology film Dus Kahaniyaan. In the following years, Dhupia appeared in supporting roles in multiple films including Chup Chup Ke Ek Chalis Ki Last Local, Mithya, Maharathi, Singh Is Kinng, and Dasvidaniya. In 2011, she also played Eva Braun in the film Dear Friend Hitler about Mahatma Gandhi. Other than acting, Dhupia has modeled on the runway for designers such as Rohit Bal and D’Damas. In 2016, Dhipia conceptualized and hosted a Bollywood podcast called #NoFilterNeha on the Indian app Saavn, in which she interviews Bollywood celebrities. The show received positive reviews, with over 2.3 million listeners. Dhupia debuted season four in November 2019 and plans to expand the podcast into a web series.

The CHDS – Radio Dil Se team would like to invite you to listen to our Neha Dhupia daily special today from 10 am – 11 am and 5 pm – 6 pm EST.


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Neeru Bajwa

Neeru Bajwa, born August 26, 1980 is a Canadian-born Indian actress, director and producer associated with Punjabi cinema. She started her career in 1998 with Dev Anand’s Bollywood film Main Solah Baras Ki and then moved on to working in Indian soap operas in 2005 with Hari Mirchi Lal Mirchi. She then moved on to Astitva… Ek Prem Kahani on Zee TV followed by Jeet on Star PLus and then Guns and Roses on Star One. She also appeared in the television series CID for a few shows. Then in January 2013, Bajwa appeared in the multi-starrer Punjabi film Saadi Love Story, produced by Jimmy Shergill productions, directed by Dheeraj Rattan and starring Diljit Dosanjh, Amrinder Gill, and Surveen Chawla. She paired up opposite Diljit Dosanjh again in the film Jatt and Juliet 2 which broke all the previous opening day collection records for Punjabi Cinema. Later in August 2013, her film, Naughy Jatts was released in which she featured alongside Binu Dhillon, Arya Babbar and Roshan Prince. Then, Bajwa went on to debut as a director in 2017 with the Punjabi movie Sargi, which stars her sister Rubani Bajwa in the leading role alongside Jassi Gill and Babbal Rai. She also owns a production company called Neeru Bajwa Entertainment. Additionally, Bajwa has also won several awards for her roles in hit films including, PTC Punjabi Film Awards, and Filmfare Awards Punjabi for Best Actress.

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Vijayta Pandit

Vijayta Pandit is an Indian film actress and playback singer, most famous for her first film Love Story. Born August 25, 1967, Vijayta comes from a musical family originating from Pili Mandori Village in the Hisar district of Haryana state. Pandit Jaraj is her uncle. Her older sister is Sulakshana Pandit, and like her, is an actress and playback singer. Her brothers are music directors Jatin Pandit and Lalit Pandit, better known as Jatin-Lalit. For her debut film, Rajendra Kumar cast her alongside his son Kuamr Gaurav in Love Story, which became a blockbuster at the box office. She and Gaurav played star-crossed lovers, and they also developed a relationship off screen. After the film became a hit ,she turned down other film offers, as she only wanted to be with Gaurav. However, their relationship soon ended due to family tensions. Vijayta then went back to films and had another hit Mohabbat. Later, she was briefly married to film director Sameer Malkan who directed her in the flop Car Thief. She then went on to act in several other films. Some films where Vijayta played the lead role include Jeete Hain Shaan Se, Deewana Tere Naam Ka, Zalzala, Pyar Ka toofan, etc. After a few more films, Vijayta quit acting and decided to focus on playback singing. Her next husband, composer Aadesh Shrivastava produced a pop album titled Propose – Pyaar Ka Izhaar which marks Vijayta’s debut as a pop singer. Actress Madhuri Dixit launched that album for the press in February 2007. She also sang for various films like Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar, Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, Saazish, Dev, and Chingar. Apart from HIndi films, she has also starred in the blockbuster Bengali film Amar SAngi along with Prasenjit directed by Sujit Guha.

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Deepti Naval

Deepti Naval, born February 3, 1952, is an Indian-born American actress, director and writer of Indian origins mostly active in Hindi cinema. She is known for her major contributions in the area of art cinema, winning critical acclaim for her sensitive ‘close to life’ characters that emphasized the changing roles of women in India. After being born in Amritsar, Punjab, Naval moved to New York City when her father got a teaching job at City University of New York. In New York, she studied fine arts at Hunter College. Her acting career started when she made her debut in 1978 with Shyam Benegal’s film Junoon. Two years later, she played a lead role in Ek Baar Phir. Alongside Smita Patil and Shabana Azmi, she became an actress in the 1980s Parallel Cinema, playing roles in films like Kammla and Ankahee. Starting with Chashme Buddoor in 1981, she was often cast with Farooque Shaikh and they became an iconic on-screen couple of the early 1980s, with films such as Chashme BuddoorSaath Saath, Kissi Se Na Kehna, Katha, Rang Birangi and Faasle. Three decades later, they reunited in Tell Me O Kkhuda. Their last film together was Listen… Amaya which was released in 2013, the year Shaikh passed away. While she was very prolific in the 1980s, her career slowed down in the 1990s and she explored other art forms. She came back in the 2000s with social dramas like Bawandar and Firaaq, and won Best Actress awards in several international film festivals for her roles in Leela, Memories in March and Listen… Amaya. She was also recognized as the 2007 Tribute Honoree of the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles. Mostly present in Hindi cinema, Naval also acted in other Indian languages, as with Marhi Da Deeva and Mane, which respectively won the award for Best Feature Film in Punjabi and Best Feature Film in Kannada at the 1990 National Film Awards ceremony She was to make her debut in a Bengali movie under director Sanjoy Nag but the film – Memories in March – was eventually shot in English. Naval has been active on TV with a few telefilms and serials such as Sauda, Tanaav or Muqammal. She came back in 2011 with the daily soap opera Mukti Bandhan on Colors. She made her theater debut in 2015 with the poetic stage show Ek Mulaqaat in which she played the celebrated Punjabi writer Amrita Pritam. Then in 2019, Naval appeared in an episode of Made In Heaven, a web series on Amazon Prime directed by Zoya Akhtar. Other than acting, Naval made her directorial debut with Do Paise Ki Dhoop, Chaar Aane Ki Baarish starring Manisha Koirala and Rajit Kapoor. The film won the Best Screenplay Award at the 2009 New York Indian Film Festival which released on Netflix in 2019. She also wrote and directed Thoda Sa Aasmaan, a TV serial centred around strong female characters, and produced a travel show, The Path Less Travelled. Her first selection of poems in Hindi, Lamha Lamha was published in 1983. In 2004, Mapin Lit published a new collection called Black Wind and Other Poems. Naval is also the author of a collection of short stories, The Mad Tibetan, published in 2011. Naval is also a painter and photographer with several exhibitions to her credit. Her works as a painter include the controversial Pregnant Nun. She also runs the Vinod Pandit Charitable Trust, set up in memory of her late companion, for the education of the girl child.

The CHDS – Radio Dil Se team would like to invite you to listen to our Deepti Naval daily special today from 10 am – 11 am and 5 pm – 6 pm EST.


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KK

Krishnakumar Kunnath, popularly known as KK, is an Indian playback singer. He has been a prominent singer in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Bengali and Gujarati films. His musical style is said to have been greatly influenced by the singer Kishore Kumar and music director R. D. Burman. He has also stated that Michael Jackson, Billy Joel, Bryan Adams, and Led Zeppelin are his favourite international musicians of his. After graduating from Kirori Mal College, Delhi University in commerce, KK had a brief stint of eight months as a marketing executive in the hotel industry. Then in the year 1994, he moved to Mumai and gave his demo tape to Louis Banks, Ranjit Barot and Lesle Lewis to get a break in the music arena. He was then called by UTV and sang a jingle for Santogen Suiting ad. In a span of four years, he had sung more than 3500 jingles in 11 different languages for several different advertisements. He was then introduced as a playback singer with A. R. Rahman’s hit song “Kalluri Saaley” and “Hello Dr.” from Kadir’s Kadhal Desam and then “Strawberry Kannae” from AVM Productions’s musical film Minsara Kanavu. Pritam Chakraborty is also a fan of his. He got his Bollywood break “Tadap Tadap” from Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. However, prior to this song he had sung a small portion of the song “Chhod Aaye Hum” from Gulzar’s Maachis. Till now, KK has sung more than 500 songs in Hindi and more than 200 songs in Telugu, Bengali, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam languages. He has worked with almost every music director of the Hindi film industry active from 1999. He has lent his voice to the biggest hit song of the year 2014 “Tune Maari Entriyaan” among several others in Gunday. KK’s new song from the movie Bajrangi Bhaijaan called “Tu Jo Mila” has become popular, many times remained No.1 on iTunes. Guinness World Record holder Kumar Sanu who reigned as the top playback singer during the 1990s, has mentioned in several interviews that from the new generation of singers he admires KK. Popular singer Arijit Singh said he has been inspired by KK in singing, and is a big fan of KK. Another popular Bollywood singer, Ankit Tiwari also said he has been greatly influenced by KK and he takes KK as his idol and inspiration. In 1999, Sony Music had just been launched in India and they were looking to launch a new artist. KK was selected as the new artiste and he came out with a solo album titled Pal with Lesle Lewis composing the music. The album was arranged, composed and produced by Lesle Lewis of Colonial Cousins. The lyrics have been penned by Mehboob. The songs “Aap Ki Dua”, “Yaaron” and the title track “Pal” in no time ruled the lips of youngsters & also the music chart. “Pal” became an anthem & “Yaaron” became a friendship anthem. The album just created history. Pal was the first album released by KK under Sony Music for which he got the prestigious Screen award as best singer. He is a very good friend of Jeevan Deep Prakash—Only resource of OCMC in India). Then on 22 January 2008, KK released his second album Humsafar after a gap of eight years. The songs “Aasman Ke”, “Dekho Na”, “Yeh Kahan Mil Gaye Hum” and “Rain Bhai Kaari (Maajhi)” are famous songs from this album. Besides, KK had also sung an English Rock Ballad “Cineraria”. The title track, “Humsafar” is a mix of English and Hindi lyrics. The album Humsafar has 10 songs, out of which eight have been composed by KK. The other two songs were taken from his previous album Pal. KK has also sung many television serial songs like Just Mohabbat, Shaka Laka Boom Boom, Kuch Jhuki Si Palkein, Hip Hip Hurray, kavyanjali, Just Dance . He has also sung the theme song for Star Parivaar Awards 2010 with Shreya Ghoshal. KK appeared on television too. He was invited as jury member for a talent hunt show Fame Gurukul. Throughout his career, KK has also won several awards including the HUB Awards, Filmfare Awards South, etc.

The CHDS – Radio Dil Se team would like to invite you to listen to our KK daily special today from 10 am – 11 am and 5 pm – 6 pm EST.


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Manisha Koirala

Manisha Koirala, is a Napalese actress who predominantly works in Indian films, mostly Bollywood. Born to the politically prominent Koirala family, she is the daughter of Prakash Koirala and granddaughter of Bishweshwar Prasad Koirala, former Prime Minister of Nepal. Initially aspiring to become a doctor, she had a brief stint in modelling. She then went on to make her acting debut in the Nepali film Pheri Bhetaula while studying in school, and later went on to feature in the Hindi drama film Saudagar. Following a series of commercial failures, Koirala established herself as a leading actress with acclaimed patriotic romance 1942: A Love Story and the Tamil-language romantic romantic drama Bombay. Later, she also went on to star in a series of commercial successes, including the thriller Agni Sakshi, the vigilante action Indian, the suspense thriller Gupt: The Hidden Truth, the action thriller Kachche Dhaage, the gangster drama Company and the romance Ek Chhotisi Love Story. She received critical acclaim for her portrayal of an ambitious wife in the drama Akele Hum Akele Tum,  the daughter of deaf-mute parents in the musical romance Khamoshi: The Musical, a terrorist in the romantic thriller Dil Se.., a mistreated woman in the drama Lajja and Sushmita Banerjee in the biopic  Escape From Taliban. Post 2003, Koirala began to work with independent fiml makers in art-house projects and in regional films. Her performance in the drama Tulsi , the Malayalam psychological drama Elektra, the anthology I Am and the romantic comedy Mappillai was praised. She took a break from acting after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012 and returned five years later with the coming-of-age drama Dear Maya. The following year, she featured in the Netflix production Lust Stories and the biography Sanju; the latter ranks among the highest-grossing Indian releases. In addition to acting, Koirala is a stage performer and has contributed as an author to the novel Healed, an account of her struggle with ovarian cancer. She was also appointed as the Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund in 1999 and 2015. Koirala is also the recipient of several accolades, including four Filmfare Awards. In 2001, the Government of Nepal awarded her with the Order of Gorkha Dakshin Bahu, the second highest honour of the country.

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Rakhee Gulzar

Born Rakhee Majumdar on 15 August 1947, Rakhee Gulzar is an Indian film actress who appeared in many Hindi films and Bengali films as well. In four decades of acting, she has won three Filmfare Awards and one National Film Award, apart from many other awards. At Filmfare, Rakhee has been nominated 16 times in total, making her the third. most-nominated performer in the female categories, behind Madhuri Dixit and Rani Mukerji. Rakhee’s career started in 1967 at the age of 20 when she acted in her first Bengali film Badhu Baran, after which she was offered the lead role in Rajshri Productions’ Jeevan Mrityu opposite Dharmendra. Then in 1971, Rakhee played a double role opposite Shashi Kapoor in Sharmilee, and also starred in Lal Patthar and Paras. All three of these films became hits and she established herself as a leading actress of Hindi Cinema. She further went on to act in films such as Shehzada opposite reigning superstar Rajesh Khanna and Aankhon Aankhon Mein opposite a relative newcomer Rakesh Roshan and was able to showcase her comic abilities although these film performances at the box office were unsatisfactory. She continued to display versatility even in relatively small roles in Lal Patthar, Heera Panna and Daag: A Poem of Love with her strong performances. The phenomenal success of Rajshri Productions’ Tapasya, a heroin-dominated movie where she played the sacrificing sister opposite Parikshi Sahni established her as a box-office name to reckon with. Following these successful films, she acted with Dev Anand in Heera Panna, Banarasi Babu, Joshila, and Lootmaar. She also starred opposite Shashi Kapoor in 10 released films; Sharmilee, Jaanwar Aur Insaan, Kabhie Kabhie, Doosrea Aadmi, the critically acclaimed Trishna, Baseraa, Bandhan Kuchchey Dhaagon Ka, Zameen Aasmaan, and Pighaltra Aasman. By the end of her career she acted in several Benagli films like Paroma and was awarded the BFJA Award for Best Actress. In relation to her personal life, she married poet and lyricist Gulzar and together, they have a daughter; Meghna Gulzar.

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Gulzar

Born in a Kalra Sikh family, on 18 August, 1934, Sampooran Singh Kalra, known professionally as Gulzar is an indian lyricist, poet, author, screenwriter, and film director. He has credited the works of Tagore, which he read in school as one of his life’s many turning points. Due to the partition of India and Pakistan, his family split and he had to stop studying and come to Mumbai to support his family. He took up small jobs including one at a mechanic shop. Here he used to touch up damaged cars by mixing shades of paint saying in an interview that he enjoyed his work as a painter as it allowed him a lot of time to simultaneously read, write, attend college, and be involved with the PWA (Progressive Writers Association). His career officially began when during his interactions with the PWA Sunday meetings the Shailendra and Bimal Roy encouraged him to join films. Gulzar then began his career under the film directors Bimal Roy and Hrishikesh Mukherjee. His book Ravi Pyaar has a narrative of Bimal Roy and the agony of creation. After that, he went on to start his career as a songwriter with the music director Sachin Dev Burman for the movie Bandini. In films, he found an environment associated with literature in the group he worked with, including Bimal Roy, most of whose films were based on literary works. Later on, the 1968 film Aashirwad by Hrishikesh Mukherjee, had dialogues and lyrics written by Gulzar. Song lyrics and poems written by Gulzar gave the poetic attribute to Ashok Kumar’s role. Ashok Kumar went on to receive the Best Actor at the Filmfare and at the National Film Awards for this role however, Gulzar’s lyrics did not gain much attention. That is until the 1969 film Khamoshi where his song “Humne Dekhi Hai Un Aankhon Ki Mehakti Khushboo” became popular. Then for the 1971 film Guddi, he wrote two songs of which “Humko Man Ki Shakti Dena” became a prayer which is still sung in many schools in India. As a lyricist, Gulzar had a close association with the music director Rahil Dev Burman. He has also worked with Sachin Dev Burman, Shankar Jaikishan, Hemant Kumar, Laxmikant Pyarelal, Madan Mohan, Rajesh Roshan, etc. he has written songs for film such as Mere Apne, Anand, Mausam, Omkara, Slumdog Millionaire, Raavan, Bunti Aur Babli, etc.

The CHDS – Radio Dil Se team would like to invite you to listen to our Gulzar daily special today from 10 am – 11 am and 5 pm – 6 pm EST.


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Daler Mehdni

Daler Mehndi, born into the Mirasi community in Patna, Bihar on August 18, 1967 is an Indian singer, songwriter, author, and record producer. He is known as one of the hands behind making Bhangra popular worldwide, as well as Indian pop music independent of Bollywood music. However, he is best known for his dance songs, voice, turban, and long, flowing robes. His career started after he was sent to compete at the annual Voice of Asia International Ethnic Pop Music Contest at Azia Dynasys in Almaty, Kazakhstan where he represented India in 1994. Here he was judged second among two hundred contestants and upon his return, Magnasound signed Mehndi for a three-album contract for three years. Bolo Ta Ra Ra, Mehndi’s debt album, sold over 20 million copies. This album established Mehndi as a pop star, which also won him the Channel V’s Best Indian Male Pop Artist Award. Then in 1997, he released his third album Balle Balle, which got him Channel V Awards in six categories. Similar to his previous albums, This one also went multi-platinum. That same year, Mehndi composed and performed the popular track “Na Na Na Re” for the Bollywood film Mrityudaata, where he also featured on the big screen alongside Amitabh Bachchan. The film’s Bollywood soundtrack album sold 1.5 million units in India. Later, in 1998, he released the track “Tunak Tunak Tun,” which had a music video produced on a then unprecedented budget of 25 million Rupees. The song and video were a huge success in India, cementing Mehndi’s status as India’s biggest popstar at the time, before later becoming an international success. The album won him the award for Best Indian Pop Album at the 1998 Screen Awards. In addition to his music career, Mehndi has also seeked out several business ventures. His biggest one being the launch of his maiden Record Label ‘DRecords’ in the year 2000. The record label has several artists under its banner including Hussain Baksh and Safri Boys. However, throughout his career, Mehndi has also been a part of some controversy. Mehndi and six others were accused in 2003 of cheating people of large sums of money by falsely promising to take them to Western countries. He was sentenced to 2 years in prison and released on bail a few days after.

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