Rajesh Khanna was not an athiest. He was an ardent follower of Goddess Vaishno Devi n Lord Shiva. Though not a regular visiter to temples but Kaka had tremendous faith on God from his innerself . His belief in astrology n spritual powers was also immense.
His astrologer friend who produced few television serials as well n who was in close proximity to him for several years in Mumbai n thereafter n also stayed with him in Ashirvaad for a pretty long time says that Kaka discussed with him for long hours about the plenetary positions in his horoscope n had lateron developed keen interest in astrology.
HE WAS THIS FRIEND only who predicted about Kaka’s joining active politics and becoming an elected MP. They met the then ex PM Rajiv Gandhi together after Kaka got the Congress ticket from New Delhi parliamentary constituency and was with the super star all along.
He believed in astrology n was quite interested in reading horoscopes as usually the film stars are extremely keen to know about their future n well being. But Kaka had special charm for astrology n it’s deep knowledge as well, having sought after constant consultations with the astrologer friend n other astrologers from time to time from his hey days as a super star to the days of his downfall.
According to a close n very trusted astrologer friend Kaka had also learned astrology deeply and was well versed about the planetary positions of stars n the subsequent meaning about the position of the planets in different houses of the horoscope. They both used to discuss astrology during midnights at length n in detail.
Kaka had become so well versed in reading horoscopes accurately that later on he had predicted about his grandson Aarav to be a popular super star of Bollywood in the days to come. Aarav is the son of Akshay and Twinkle Khanna.
Kaka had too much of faith in lord Shiva , said his one time astrologer friend.
I remember when Kaka won the New Delhi parliamentary election against Shatrughan Sinha, also the bollywood actor n a BJP nominee then, Kaka expressed his keen desire to visit Vaishno Devi shrine n Tirupatibalaji Temple in Andhra Pradesh n donated his hair as is the usual practice there.
Since R.K. Dhawan’s emmisary n confidante who was looking after Kaka’s election then, namely Brijmohan Bhama was the member of Tirupati Balaji Temple Commitee Trust, arrangements for Kaka’s visit to Tirupati were adequately made and Kaka visited Lord Tirupati Temple to pay his obiesance n respects. RAJESH KHANNA had then sacrificed his hair n got his head shaved in Tirupati Temple as a mark of reverrence to the Lord Tirupati.
However he can’t visit the Vaishno Devi Temple Shrine due to his being over occupied as Member of Parliament New Delhi despite his hearty wish. People of the constituency were too amused to see Kaka as a bald man n there were hundreds n hundreds of enquiry everyday about Kaka’ fully shaven head. Though Kaka became bald after Lord Tirupati’s darshan but he never wore hat or cap till his hair grew fully.
He used to attend all the functions with very little hair on his head. But yes for few days he did’nt appeared in public to avoid shock to his fans n well wishers. However, KAKA was invited by me in a English Newspaper’s release function at Constitution Club, Rafi Marg in New Delhi after Kaka’s Tirupati Darshan to release South Delhi Scenerio Tabloid with Panthers’ party chief Bhim Singh MLA n senior advocate Supreme Court presiding over the function.
Kaka visited Vaishno Devi Shrine after he lost the parliamentary elections in 1997 against Jagmohan of BJP. Vipin Oberoi usually accompanied Kakaji on such tours. Kaka walked on foot from Katra but hired the pony in between. Even during the elections Kaka used to visit temples, gurudwaras, mosque n churches on the call of the organisers n used to pay his obiesance very seriously n with full devotion. Though such visits were more a socio political obligations but Kaka enjoyed such visits saying at least I get chance to pay obisance to Gods on such ocassions.
I fondly remember that in the second election when he contested against Shatru his campaign trail started from the Jagannath Temple in Safdarjung Development area, Delhi opposite Hauz Khas when the Temple committtee arranged a full fledged decorated Rath ( Chariot of Lord Jagannath) n Kaka stood as a Chariot hero taking the round of the vicinity with hundreds of onlookers n the Jagannath devotees. A pooja was performed here and Kaka was given the brand new shining KURTA DHOTI to wear. He changed his attire in a small temple room n looked extremely handsome as a BABUMOSHAY raising his hands in cheers at his umpteen jubilant fans n followers. He never ever said no to visit temples. During his last days Kaka also visited the famous Shirdi Sai Baba Temple to pay his obisance.
He was a devotee of GANESHJI as well n when he was alloted the official bungalow, 81, Lodhi Estate, in New Delhi’s VIP area, he arranged for a huge Bhagwan Ganesh’s idol installed decently near his house’s inner main entrance at 81, Lodhi Eastate . He placed the idol straight in front of the main gate inside his residential territory so that it is clearly visible to one and all visiting him right from the outer main entrance. He used to stand adjacent to the Lord Ganesha idol for hours sometimes while interacting with his friends, electorates n party workers who visited him at 81 Lodhi Estate Bungalow going here a there in between n interating in an easy mood.
IT MAY BE RECALLED THAT Rajesh Khanna, the first n original superstar of Indian film industry n heart throb of millions got his entire government bungalow from inside fitted with high quality tiles n marble despite knowing the fact that he’ll be changing it after four n a half years. Kaka had his own style and reputation to lead a life of decency but in luxury as well. His super star image warranted it despite his being a gentleman to the hilt and friend of friends. Kaka’s spent the entire money from his own pocket. The then senior. architect Mr. Mehta was hired by Kaka to design its interiors on his personal request who had by then become quite close to Kaka. It was because of the outstanding maintenance of this bungalow with fantastic architecture the then union minister Pramod Mahajan has accupied this bungalow.