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Beyond textbooks: Bollywood actors who left studies midway

A surprising number of Bollywood's newer and younger lot has opted out of school and college leaving studies midway. A look at some of the popular stars...

Bollywood is the only place perhaps where qualifications do not matter. You don’t need an attractive resume with a string of degrees and courses to carve a successful career.

Over the decades, there have been scores of stars who dropped out of school to pursue their acting ambitions — some regretted it, while it did not matter to most others.

The late Meena Kumari never attended school, but she wrote poetry. Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt did not complete his education, but he is known to be a walking encyclopedia of every subject under the sun.

The Kapoors Karisma and Kareena traded their textbooks for the camera at a young age. Clearly, in Bollywood, it is not your education that matters, but the number of hits that are attached to your name.

The trend of dropouts continues in B-Town with quite a few of the younger lot having chucked their studies in favour of a career in the glamour world...

Alia Bhatt
Alia Bhatt
She did not go beyond schooling at Jamnabai Narsee School in Juhu, but ended up being Karan Johar’s Student Of The Year. The 21-year-old has no regrets that she gave up her studies nor is she keen to attend college. She knew all along that she wanted to take up acting, so college was never in her to-do list.

Sushant Singh Rajput
Sushant Singh Rajput
He did his schooling at St Karen’s High School in Patna and Hansraj Model School in New Delhi. He was studying at the Delhi College of Engineering when he decided to drop out and pursue acting. He joined Shiamak Davar’s dance troupe and performed at various events till the television soap, Kis Desh Mein Hai Meraa Dil, was offered to him. This was followed by his claim-to-fame show, Pavitra Rishta, and then came his Bollywood outing, Kai Po Che!.

Arjun Kapoor
Arjun Kapoor
He studied at Arya Vidya Mandir in Juhu and after failing in Class XI, he dropped out of junior college. He wanted to be a director so he began assisting filmmaker Karan Johar, till Salman Khan told him to try his hand at acting.

Tiger Shroff Sooraj Panscholi
Tiger Shroff and Sooraj Panscholi
These new kids on the block have been preparing for their B-Town debuts (Heropanti and Hero respectively) for the last few years. It’s no wonder then that they haven’t studied beyond high school.

Shraddha Kapoor
Shraddha Kapoor
She did her schooling at Jamnabai Narsee School, Juhu, and then enrolled in the American School of Bombay in Bandra. Later on, she went to Boston, but subsequently quit studies to star in her debut film, Teen Patti.

Ileana D'Cruz
Ileana D'Cruz
She completed her high school studies at St Mary’s Convent, Mapusa in Goa. After this, she began modelling and was then offered films in the South. The film, Barfi!. marked her Bollywood debut.

Amit Sadh
Amit Sadh
He quit his studies after Standard XII to pursue his acting career. His first major role was in Neena Gupta’s show, Kyun Hota Hai Pyarr. B-Town then beckoned him with Kai Po Che!.

Bilal Amrohi
Bilal Amrohi
The O Teri actor studied at Learners Academy at Bandra and after Class X, he began assisting filmmakers J P Dutta and Atul Agnihotri. He never looked back at textbooks.

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