Voted as the No.10 Greatest Stars of Stage and Screen of the last 1000 years in a BBC News Online Survey, Govinda is a distinguished Indian actor and a former member of the Parliament. Govinda Arun Ahuja was born on 21 December 1963 to actor parents Arun Ahuja and Nirmala Devi. Govinda’s parents suffered significant losses as the only film they produced failed at the box office. The Ahuja family was forced to move to the Mumbai suburb of Virar from the posh bungalow in Carter Road.
Affectionately called Chi Chi, Govinda is the youngest one with five elder siblings. Govinda married Sunita Ahuja on 11 March 1987 and the couple is blessed with two children, daughter Narmada and son Yashvardhan.
Govinda studied commerce at the Annasahb Vartak College in Vasai, Mumbai. Govinda had an obsession for dance and would practise for hours and eventually made a significant contribution to the bollywood style of dancing. Best known for his effortless comedy, Govinda made his bollywood debut with 1986 release ‘Ilzaam’ that became a commercial success. Govinda appeared in a couple of substantially successful movies like ‘Love 86’, ‘Hatya’ and ‘Khudgarz’ all opposite Neelam. He later worked in smash hits like ‘Hum’, ‘Dariya Dil’, ‘Taaqatwar’, ‘Swarg’ and ‘Ghair Kanooni’.
His performance in Godfather’s remake ‘Zulm Ki Hukumat’ received rave reviews from the critics. Govinda ruled the 90s with his blockbuster comedies all directed by David Dhawan including ‘Shola Aur Shabnam’, ‘ Aankhen’, ‘Raja Babu’ , ‘Coolie No. 1’ , ‘Saajan Chale Sasural’ , ‘Hero No. 1’ , ‘Deewana Mastana’ , ‘Bade Miyan Chote Miyan’ , ‘Haseena Maan Jaayegi’ , ‘Anari No. 1’ and ‘Jodi No. 1’. Govinda’s consistent performance and hardwork placed him in the league of top bollywood actors. Govinda has also done playback singing in ‘Haseena Maan Jaayegi’, ‘Dulaara’, ‘Aankhen’ and ‘Shola Aur Shabnam’ .
Cutting the stereotype of comedies, Govinda starred in 2000 release ‘Shikari’, wherein he played a negative role for the first time. Govinda’s commendable performance was highly appreciated by the critics. After playing a successful innings in bollywood, Govinda joined politics and won the North Mumbai Member of Parliament seat in 2004 elections. However his indifference and inaccessibility to the general public of his constituency earned him negative criticisms from opposition as well as fellow partymen.
Eventually he decided to quit politics and made a comeback to bollywood with Priyadarshan’s ‘Bhagam Bhag’ alongside Akshay Kumar that became a box office success. He was next seen in Nikhil Advani’s ‘Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute To Love’, which was the remake of love actually. The multi-starrer film could not do well at the box office, however his next release ‘Partner’ became the highest earner of 2007. ‘Partner’ was a comedy directed by David Dhawan and also starred Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif and Lara Dutta. Govinda was honoured with theMost Stylish Comeback Award at the MTV Lycra Style Awards in 2007.
Govinda is currently working on Mani Ratnam’s highly coveted project ‘Raavan’ alongside Vikram, Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. His forthcoming projects include ‘Banda Yeh Bindaas Hai’, ‘Naughty @ 40’, ‘Loot’, ‘Chai Garam’, ‘Ab Dilli Door Nahin’ , ‘Run Bhola Run’, ‘Showman’ and ‘Raavan’.
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