Happy Birthday Mumtaz: Know More about the actor with whom Shammi Kapoor and Jeetendra were in love

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Published by Amrit Santlani on 30 Jul 2019

Think of Mumtaz and you’ll be reminded of the beautiful chirpy girl in Hindi cinema’s evergreen songs such as Bindiya Chamkegi, Jai Jai Shiv Shankar, Aaj Kal Tere Mere Pyar and Yeh Reshmi Zulfein. During her career spanning three decades, Mumtaz worked with popular actors of her time — Rajesh Khanna, Amitabh Bachchan, Dev Anand, Jeetendra, Shammi Kapoor, Dharmendra and Shashi Kapoor. However, not many would know that Shammi and Jeetendra were in love with her.

As Mumtaz celebrates her 70th birthday today, here’s taking a look at some lesser-known facts about the actor.

1. Mumtaz is an Arabic word. It means ‘the distinguished’ or ‘the best’.

2. Her parents Abdul Saleem Askari and Shadi Habib Agha are from Iran. They got divorced just one year after she was born (in 1947).

3. After their separation, Mumtaz’s mother moved in with her maternal grandmother and aunt. The family went through financial crisis and Mumtaz and her sister Malika decided to work in the film industry to help their family.

4. Mumtaz started her career as a child artist in Hindi films and she made her acting debut with the 1952 film Sanskar.

5. At the peak of her career, Mumtaz tied the knot with businessman Mayur Madhwani in 1974 at the age of 27, and she left films and moved to Mombasa, and then London. They have two daughters Natasha and Tanya.

6. Mumtaz worked in many B-grade films before making her foray into mainstream cinema with Do Raaste (1969) opposite Rajesh Khanna.

7. In Hare Rama Hare Krishna (1971), Dev Anand first offered the role of his sister to Mumtaz. But she opted out of the film, as she didn’t want to play his on-screen sister when she was playing lead opposite him. Hence, Zeenat Aman was roped in to play the part.

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