As we prepare to celebrate Father’s Day tomorrow, we naturally reflect on what it means to be a good father and the irreplaceable role that a father has to play in the lives of his children; as a protector, provider, champion and role model.
Cinema gives us many depictions of this important person in our lives. Bollywood films in particular, with their emphasis on family and community, have given us many unforgettable on-screen dads. Here’s a list of 5 Bollywood dads who you’d definitely want in your life as father-figures:
1. Dharamvir Malhotra in Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge
Anupam Kher, as Raj’s dad, is a fresh change from the typical dads we saw in Bollywood movies at the time. Dharamvir is modern, has a good sense of humour and enjoys a very friendly relationship with his son, which is why we find him endearing.
2. Mahavir Singh Phogat in Dangal
Based on a real life wrestler with the same name, this dad (played by Aamir Khan) wants his daughters to be wrestling champions, despite severe criticism from his community. Though certain scenes might raise questions about his parenting methods — such as when he forcibly chops off his daughter’s hair — we realise that he simply wants the very best for his daughters’ future.
3. Rahul Khanna in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
The grownup Rahul (Shahrukh Khan), in the second half of KKHH, is a responsible, caring single dad who adores his daughter, to the point of being over-protective at times, and freaks out at the slightest sign of any discomfort that she faces.
4. DK Malhotra in Masoom
Played beautifully by Naseeruddin Shah, DK loves his wife and two daughters but his life falls apart as he discovers that he has an illegitimate son from an affair. He accepts his son’s responsibility, while struggling to keep his family together, and the movie depicts poignantly his bond and love for his son.
5. Jai in Chachi 420
Jaiprakash Paswan, played by Kamal Hasan, is only allowed to see his daughter Bharti on a weekly basis as he is a fighting a divorce case with his estranged wife. With the help of a makeup artist, Jai transforms into a female caregiver just to be close to his daughter.
These are just a few of many loving dads that Bollywood has given us. We hope that fathers in Hindi cinema will continue to evolve and we will have many more doting fathers to write about.