A mother of two, a homemaker, a businesswoman, a prominent personality, a social activist, and a multiple award-winning actress, she leads a multifaceted life. Her talent is such that the character she portrays, becomes immortal, staying raw, avid and etched in our memories. Simran, Anjali, Sanjana, Muskan are a few characters that are synonymous when we talk about this hazel-eyed, dusky beauty.
Padmashri Kajol Mukherjee-Devgn born in an affluent Bollywood family to an actress mother, Tanuja, and director-producer father Shomu Mukherjee, made her presence felt in the film industry not by leaning on the crutches of a strong family lineage but through her talent. Her grandmother was the highly-acclaimed actress Shobhana Samarth, maternal aunt was Nutan, paternal grandfather, Sashadhar Mukherjee and uncles were famous producers and filmmakers; her first cousins are successful industry people in their own right. Having seen many ups and downs in her career, she did not lose hope, instead knocked out the odds to create a niche for herself in B-town.
Although unnoticed in her debut film, Bekhudi (1992), Kajol gained recognition in Baazigar opposite Shahrukh Khan for the first time – they are one of the best onscreen couples even today. Her talent glistened not only with the romantic characters she portrayed, but she was splendid even in out-of-the-box characters as – Naina (Dushman), a character who avenges the murder of her twin sister, Sonia, also played by Kajol; Isha Diwan (Gupt), a psychopath murderer; Nandita Rai (Dil Kya Kare), the other woman in the life of a happily-married man, Ajay Devgn; Megha (Hum Aapke Dil Mein Rehte Hain), a deceived wife and a helpless daughter caught in a circumstantial net; Piya (U Me Aur Hum), an Alzheimer’s patient. For her role as Isha (Gupt), she bagged the Filmfare Award for Best Performance in a Negative Role, a category that was usually awarded to a male antagonist until Kajol broke the bubble.
Following the footprints of her maternal aunt, Nutan, Kajol too has won maximum number of Filmfare Awards. In 2008, the actress was awarded Karmaveer Puraskar for her thankless work towards widows and children. Kajol also received critical acclaim for her roles in the film U Me Aur Hum and My Name is Khan.
As a human, she has left no stone unturned to leave a mark in all arenas of life. A decision to abandon studies and concentrate on her acting career proved to be fruitful for her. She married actor, Ajay Devgn and took a break from her acting career and fit into the skin of a mother to two beautiful kids, Nysa & Yug. After a hiatus of 5 long years, when Kajol made a comeback with Fanaa opposite Aamir Khan, it became quite clear that it was only the beginning of her second innings in Bollywood. In an interview, however, Kajol was quoted saying that she had never really quit the industry to officially make a comeback.
Her acting prowess raised the bar for many actors to eventually follow suit and not quite achieve the fame and fan following that she got in less than a decade. Not particularly looked up to for her sense of style in the past, she has managed to change that notion as well about herself. She is truly a diva and a perfect example of an Indian woman who manages work and personal life with much aplomb.
Inputs by Saumya Sharma