Inside Dilip Kumar’s life: Why he changed his Muslim name and had no kids

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Dilip Kumar

The legendary Bollywood actor, Dilip Kumar, died today at the age of 98. He was facing age-related issues and was undergoing medical treatment.

Often regarded as Bollywood’s Marlon Brando, Kumar was born Mohammed Yusuf Khan on the 11th of December 1922 at Qissa Khwani Bazaar in Peshawar, Pakistan.

He was introduced to pioneering Indian actor Devika Rani by one of his teachers. Rani advised him to become an actor. With no experience and acting background, the dire need for money persuaded him to take up the offer.

Rani had also suggested the actor to hide his Muslim identity and take up a new Hindu name as it would help his career flourish in post-partition India. And from there, Muhammad Yusuf became Dilip Kumar.

Dilip Kumar and his wife Banu formed an adorable couple, but the duo never had a child. Earlier in an interview with the Indian media, Kumar had said that he has no regrets for not having a child as they never faced a lack of satisfaction.

The icon revealed in his biography titled Dilip Kumar: The Substance and the ShadowBanu conceived in 1972 but developed complications in her eighth month of pregnancy, and the doctors couldn’t save the baby.

The couple did not try to have another child after the miscarriage.

In 2017, during an interview, when asked if she feels a void of not having children of her own, Saira Banu said, “I don’t miss having a child. For me, our marriage is the most important thing.” 

However, Kumar expressed “it would have been great to have someone to carry my legacy forward.” However, he stated that they have no regrets.

He added, “Neither Saira nor I can complain of a lack of contentment. It is enough for us that we have our families to share our happiness and our small dismays with.”

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