Actor Sanjay Dutt took to Instagram to remember his mother, late actor Nargis on her 39th death anniversary. He posted an old black-and-white picture with his mother and wrote a touching note along with it.
He said: “It’s been 39 years since you left us but I know you’re always by my side. I wish you were here with me, today & everyday. Love you and miss you everyday Mom.” In the picture, a young Sanjay sits next to his mother as she looks at him protectively.
Nargis died on May 3, 1981 due to pancreatic cancer, aged only 51. All her life, she had been particularly concerned about her son. According to her older daughter Namrata, she had expressed her concern for his future in a letter, even before she left for the US to receive treatment at the Memorial Sloan–Kettering Cancer Center in New York. In a report in Times of India, Namrata had said, “Please look after Sanju, see that he does not get mixed up with those silly boys again. He is too stupid in his head, he does not realise what he is doing and know it is going to hurt him.”
In the same letter, she had worried about her own health. She had written, “I am in such a mental condition, I have gone far away from all of you, and I don’t know what is going to happen. But I have faith in God. He is not going to be so cruel as to not send me back to all of you. I know how much all of you love me. Keep praying for me that all will be well with me.”
In his book, Sanjay Dutt: The Crazy Untold Story of Bollywood’s Bad Boy, writer Yasser Usman narrates an incident of how Sanjay cried for four days, on at the time of his mother’s death but three years later. “Sanjay had not cried when his mother died. It had been three long years since Nargis had passed away but Sanjay’s wounds were still festering,” Usman wrote.
Sanjay was at that at a drugs rehab centre in the US. His dad Sunil Dutt sent him some tapes of Nargis talking during her final days so as to help him in his rehab. “When Sanjay got the tapes from Sunil he had no idea what was on them. He pressed play and suddenly the room was filled with Nargis’s voice. He remembered his childhood, when his mother’s voice would reverberate through the Dutt mansion.”
His mother’s voice was weak, broken and in pain. But Nargis spoke of her dreams for her son and had some advice for him. “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,” Nargis had said.
“I burst out crying and I cried and cried. I cried continuously for four days . . . I think till then I hadn’t grieved for her when she passed away. So her voice and those tapes changed everything in my life,” the book quoted Sanjay as saying.
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