Exploring seems to be ‘the word’ these days. Exploring one’s sexuality, spirituality, options and so on. As we are constantly evolving and progressing, we are opening up to the concept of experimentation and looking for something we are really inclined to and feel comfortable in.
Although when it comes to spirituality and religion, things in India don’t seem as open as the West. As soon as we are born, we unwillingly get tagged to a religion we hardly know about; however, we are finally coming to accept and believe in what we want to. Although, not everyone is lucky enough to express that way in India.
But celebrities, they are the fountain of expressiveness. Many celebs have converted their religion either for love or have been inspired by the religion’s teachings. Changing your religion is one thing and practising is another. But surely for whatever reason they did, they managed to get a lot of attention. Whether it was for love or them reconnecting with their spiritual side, let’s take a look at the celebs who changed their religion, and got the world talking:
Dharmendra and Hema Malini
Dharmendra was married to Prakash Kaur, when he fell head over heels in love with Hema Malini. With Prakash refusing to divorce him and the Hindu Marriage Act coming in the way of the actor’s second marriage, there was little option but to convert to Islam. Both changed their names to Aisha Bi R. Chakravarty and Dilawar Khan Kewal Krishn and got hitched with Islamic rites.
Sharmila Tagore converted to Islam when she got married to Nawab Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi. She also took on the name Ayesha Sultana. Their marriage was a strong one, which lasted for 42 years, with the death of Nawab Mansoor Ali Khan in 2011.
Kishore Kumar fell in love with the timeless beauty Madhubala and the couple got married in 1960. He even changed his name to Karim Abdul. The marriage ended with Madhubala’s death in 1969.
R.S. Dileep Kumar converted to Islam and changed his name to Allahrakha Rahman, a name that an astrologer suggested right before he converted. His mother and him were deeply influenced by Qadri Saaheb, a Sufi saint, so they embraced Sufi Islam.
Nargis converted to Hinduism to marry Sunil Dutt; her Hindu name being Nirmala Dutt, though she was known as Nargis Dutt all her life.
Born to a Muslim mother and Hindu father, Nagma converted to Christianity in 2007. She now preaches it too. The actress had once testified that a copy of the Bible saved her from killing herself when she was depressed and contemplating suicide. That`s when she whole-heartedly embraced Christianity.
Madly in love with Saif Ali Khan, even though he was 12 years younger, Amrita converted to Islam so the couple could tie the knot. The marriage hit the rocks when Saif was rumored to having an affair with Rosa, an Italian model and they divorced after 13 years of being together.