Bollywood divas: Hema Malini ‘touched’ by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s respectful gesture
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Bollywood divas: Hema Malini ‘touched’ by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s respectful gesture

In the context of whether the current crop of Bollywood actors respect their seniors enough, Hema recalls how Aishwarya stood by her after an awards show and stopped the crowd from mobbing her.

bollywood Updated: May 11, 2017 09:19 IST
Samarth Goyal
Samarth Goyal
Hindustan Times
Hema Malini,Aishwarya Rai Bachchan,Rishi Kapoor
Hema Malini was recently honoured with the Dadasaheb Phalke Excellence Award.

Hema Malini, unlike her Bollywood colleague Rishi Kapoor, does not believe that actors and filmmakers that followed her own generation lack respect for their seniors. The question of respect came up when Rishi wrote anguished social media posts about how none of the current crop of actors (barring Abhishek Bachchan and Randeep Hooda) attended the funeral of veteran actor Vinod Khanna, who died on April 27.

Recalling an incident involving herself and actor Aishwarya Rai Bachchan — they both were felicitated at the Dadasaheb Phalke Awards held in Mumbai last month — Hema tells us, “After the ceremony was over, I was waiting for a while for my car to come. I guess the driver had parked it some distance away, and it took him some time [to reach me]. I realised that Aishwarya was just standing there with me, refusing to leave. When I asked her, ‘Why are you still here?’ she replied, ‘Aapki gaadi aane do (Let your car come). I will leave after that.’”

Rishi Kapoor was furious after young actors didn’t turn up for actor Vinod Khanna’s funeral. (Amlan Dutta/HT)

Aishwarya even became Hema’s bouncer for a while and helped manage the crowd around her. “There were so many people who were trying to click photos and were trying to take selfies. [Aishwarya] was making sure that I don’t get pushed or nudged by them. Then, after [my] car came, she opened the door, made sure I sat inside the car, and only then did she move to her car, which had been waiting for a while,” she recalls.

Touched by Aishwarya’s gesture, Hema, 68, believes that younger actors or filmmakers “understand and give due respect” to the industry legends.

Actor Aishwarya Rai Bachchan was last seen in the Karan Johar directorial Ae Dil Hai Mushkil .

“I was so touched by that,” Hema says of the way Aishwarya kept her company and also kept the over-enthusiastic fans under control. “Now who’d do such a thing? It shows that there’s a lot of respect and regard for me. I don’t know if everyone in the industry is like her, but there are people who, just like Aishwarya, understand and give due respect to those who are senior to them. I don’t think it’s right to say that everyone is the same,” she adds.

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First Published: May 10, 2017 17:57 IST