Scandal Flashback: Rahul Roy’s Controversies
He rose to fame with his debut film Aashiqui, but Rahul Roy was often in the news for wrong reasons
Rahul Roy tasted stardom with his very first film – Aashiqui which went on to become a cult movie. Unlike other actors, he didn’t have to struggle much to become an actor. Rahul was discovered by Mahesh Bhatt who had gone to his house to meet his mum Indira Roy to congratulate her on being featured in Savvy magazine. There was something about the lanky yet handsome Rahul that caught Mahesh’s eye and he offered him the lead role in the musical Aashiqui opposite newcomer Anu Aggarwal.
Mahesh’s instincts proved right as Aashiqui became a blockbuster and Rahul’s popularity soared among the masses. The girls went gaga over him while boys wanted to copy his unusual hairstyle. After Aashiqui, Rahul did five films with Mahesh and was appreciated in most of them. In an interview, Rahul said, “He was like a father figure to me. My admiration, love and respect for him will always be there.”
Unfortunately, after the success of Aashiqui, something strange happened. Rahul allegedly didn’t get any films for about eight months and then, all of a sudden, he got around 60 offers out of which he signed 47. The reason why he signed so many movies, he admitted, was insecurity. He had to let go of few offers but most of the films he did, failed at the box-office. The flops severely affected his career. As many as nine projects he signed were shelved for various reasons ranging from lack of funds to the demise of the filmmakers! But professional failures were only the tip of the iceberg. Rahul’s personal life was not smooth either. Unlike what his chocolate boy image conveyed, he was reportedly a troublemaker and quite egotistic.
HIS LOVE LIFE WAS always controversial. First he was linked to Pooja Bhatt but both of them clarified that they were nothing but good friends. His serious link-up with Manisha Koirala allegedly went kaput because of this devotion to Mahesh Bhatt. Insiders say, he used to ignore Manisha Koirala, who he was seeing at the time, on many occasions because he was too busy with Mahesh. Apparently, he followed Mahesh around the entire day, forgetting Manisha, only to remember her much after midnight. Even then Rahul would allegedly use her phone to call Mahesh to see if he was free to chat and if he was, Rahul would instantly run too meet him. Day in and day out, every sentence started with Mahesh and ended with him. Tired of being ignored by her boyfriend, Manisha finally decided to end the relationship.
RAHUL FACED ANOTHER BIG crisis when he was accused of almost running over a man. The incident happened when he was shooting for Jab Jab Dil Mile at the helipad at Film City. An action scene was being shot where Rahul’s jeep was shown to go out of control due to break failure and crashes. Unfortunately, the jeep Rahul was driving malfunctioned at the last minute. The brakes got jammed and the vehicle kept skidding sideways. It ended up hitting a man who was hiding in the bushes watching the shoot, injuring him severely. An official FIR was then registered against Rahul at the Goregaon Police Station. Refuting the allegations, Rahul said it wasn’t his fault. “I don’t know, this man who was selling something, was sitting there watching the shoot despite the production officials having cleared the area. He wasn’t meant to be there. And unfortunately, the skidding jeep hit him and he fractured his thigh bone. But the producer has taken care of that.” He wasn’t arrested.
A FAR MORE serious problem cropped up when a local newspaper in Mauritius linked him with a notorious dealer named Riyazat Hussain. Reportedly, when the police arrested Riyazat, he said Rahul was his partner in crime and produced some photographs of them together. Apparently, producer Yash Johar (who made Gumrah with Rahul in the lead), Romu Sippy and director Raj Sippy were in Mauritius trying to find an appropriate location for their shoot. When Yash Johar heard about the controversy, he decided to get to the bottom of the issue. Interestingly, the investigators found a photograph of Rahul posing with Riyazat in an album at the latter’s residence and held that against him. Yashji argued that when actors take pictures with people, they are not aware of the individual’s profession. In an interview Yashji claimed, “When the chief gave me the dates when Riyazat visited Mauritius, I pointed out that he wasn’t in Mauritius at the time that Rahul was there. I remembered all the dates when he shot for Gumrah. So they acted upon what I told them and the authorities discovered that Riyazat had made several fake passports.” He further even wrote a letter to the Indian High Commissioner in Mauritius to sort out the matter! Rahul maintained that he had been framed. He said he posed for 300 to 400 pictures daily and could not have known the identity of the people snapped with him. He confessed, “During the shooting of Gumrah he (Riyazat) had taken a photograph with me. So when he got caught he was asked about it. He claimed to be a friend of mine and a newspaper came out with headlines linking me to him.” Yash Johar made the journalist print a clarification in the newspaper as the reports were solely based on the claims made by Riyazat and Rahul’s side wasn’t given due prominence. Rahul said, “How can people believe the words of a criminal against that of a public personality?”
RAHUL’S CAREER took a nosedive only to be resurrected when he won the first season of Bigg Boss.
On the personal front his relationship with Suman Ranganathan and other women didn’t work out. Finally he married model Rajlaxmi Khanvilkar who had earlier been married to Samir Soni. It was thought he had a good marriage but the industry was shocked when the couple filed for divorce recently. Insiders say the marriage had been on the rocks for quite a while. It was rumoured that for four years they stayed apart with Rajlaxmi being in Sydney and Rahul in Mumbai. The reason for the split allegedly was that Rajlaxmi wanted to settle in Australia while Rahul wanted to stay in Mumbai. Rahul even said in an interview, “Rajlaxmi and I are still in touch. She comes to India sometimes. I have visited her in Australia. But yes the distance has taken its toll on our marriage, like it generally does in any relationship.”
Now, the divorce has dealt him another blow. Hopefully he will get a chance at professional and personal success once again.
A report of Yash Johar, Romu and Raj Sippy in Mauritius during the shoot of Gumraah
Rahul – After his luck with films ran out, Rahul turned to his family business, surfacing occasionally in some B and C grade films. Currently, he is starring in a film called, 2B or not to B. He also owns a production house called Rahul Roy Productions and has worked in regional cinema too.
Mahesh Bhatt – He is all set to work on a number of films including Humari Adhuri Kahaani with Vidya Balan. His relationship with Rahul has weakened over the years. On hearing that Rahul had said that Aashiqui 2 would not be able to surpass Aashiqui, Mahesh allegedly said, “Rahul Roy is delusional and that he should wake up and have some humility!
Yash Johar – Yashji died of a chest infection and cancer in 2004. Some of his films like Dostana and Agneepath have been recreated by his son Karan Johar. His film Gumrah starring Rahul was a critical and commercial hit.