New Delhi: Nargis played an important role in helping Sanjay Dutt fight drug addiction. In a 1991 interview that has surfaced on social media, Sanjay talks about coming to terms with his mother’s death. The legendary actress succumbed to cancer just 3 days before the actor’s debut film – Rocky – released.
“When my mother died, I did not cry, had no emotions – nothing. It was after 2 years where I was sitting in this group, and all of a sudden this guy started playing the tape…” Sanjay said.
The actor was referring to his mother’s last words to him from her deathbed. He admits that after listening to the audio recording, he “burst into tears and cried and cried for hours.”
The voice message said, “More than anything, Sanju, keep your humility. Keep your character. Never show off. Always be humble and always respect the elders. That is the thing that is going to take you far, and that is going to give you strength in your work.”
Rajkumar Hirani’s film Sanju also uses Nargis’ last message to Sanjay Dutt as an important plot device. It shows how Sanjay was so addicted to drugs that his mother’s death didn’t even register wholly.
It was only years later that his father Sunil Dutt (essayed by Paresh Rawal) played his mother Nargis’ (Manisha Koirala in the film) last tape to him that he decided to fight his addiction. As Hirani said in the film, certain creative liberties had been taken in Sanju and the message was completely different.
Nargis died of pancreatic cancer in 1981. She was 51. Sanju has gone on to become a box office success, with close to Rs 300 crore earnings in two weeks of release.