When Rekha Was Called A Black Widow By The Media After Her Husband Mukesh Agarwal's Suicide, Subhash Ghai Allegedly Called Her A Blot On The Industry
When Rekha Faced A Witch Hunt After Her Husband Died By Suicide (Picture Credit: Wikimedia)

Rekha is one of the most controversial actresses of yesteryear and still strong enough not to get bothered about anything said about her. She has faced one of the ugliest trials in the history of the media when she was called a black widow by the magazines, and even the industry treated her as an outcast. Some spread gossip about her rebellious behaviour while some questioned her character.

For a long time, none were aware that the actress married a businessman Mukesh Agarwal who was later found hanging in his room. After his death, the Silsila actress was subjected to all sorts of atrocities. People took shots at her outrageous behaviour and even her in-laws took digs at her, blaming her for her husband’s alleged suicide.

In her biography, Rekha: The Untold Story, many such instances were mentioned about the actress getting treated very badly by her industry folks. The book says that after her husband died, Rekha was tagged as a ‘Black Widow’ by some media publications. She was also called a national vamp and a blot on the industry by industry veterans Anupam Kher and Subhash Ghai.

The book, written by Yasser Usman, mentions, “A national witch hunt followed. People all over the country started hating and shaming her as a cold-hearted man-eater. Mukesh’s (Rekha’s husband) mother’s wail made headlines when she cried, ‘Woh daayan mere bete ko kha gayi. Bhagwan use kabhi maaf nahi karega.’ (That witch devoured my son. God will never forgive her.)”

The book also mentioned the names of Subhash Ghai and Anupam Kher, calling the actress names. The book mentions, “Anupam Kher said she’s become the national vamp. Professionally and personally, I think it’s curtains for her. I mean I don’t know how I will react to her if I come face to face with her.” Subhash Ghai said, “Rekha has put such a blot on the face of the film industry that it’ll be difficult to wash it away easily. I think after this any respectable family will think twice before accepting any actress as their bahoo. It’s going to be tough even professionally for her. No conscientious director will work with her ever again. How will the audience accept her as Bharat ki nari or insaf ki devi?”

However, while Anupam Kher allegedly predicted that Rekha’s run was finished in Bollywood, she is still the charmer who makes heads turn around. Later, Kher, in a tweet, clarified that he respects the actress a lot and that whatever has been attributed to his name in the book is rubbish. His tweet said, “Apparently, in a book about Rekha ji, some lines were attributed to me. It is all RUBBISH & NOT my language. I have the greatest regard for her.”

Interestingly, this discussion came alive a few years ago when a witch hunt was followed after Sushant Singh Rajput’s alleged suicide, where his girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty was called all sorts of names and even blamed for the actor’s death. The Internet discussed how both unfortunate deaths saw the women involved getting blamed and harassed in a public trial.

For the unversed, the Khoobsoorat actress married a businessman Mukesh Agarwal in 1990. However, their life together was very short-lived since the Delhi-based businessman died by suicide after a year of their marriage due to allegedly facing losses. The superstar’s biography states that the couple had decided to call it quits when the unfortunate incident happened. They had even filed for divorce, but the separation could not happen legally, and what followed after was the media trial.

Rekha faced a tough public trial where people called her a man-eater. She was already called a home-wrecker for her alleged romance with a married man, Amitabh Bachchan. However, the Umrao Jaan of Bollywood still ruled like a queen, unapologetic and unfazed by whatever was written about her. More power to her timeless beauty!

For more such throwback stories, stay tuned to Koimoi.

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