Bollywood celebs recount their fondest memories of Raksha Bandhan
Raksha Bandhan is around the corner and bonding adopts an all-new meaning for brothers and sisters. To get a pulse of the mood in the city, Soma Das and Dhara Vora got select famous faces from the entertainment industry to open up about their happiest memories of what the festival means to them
Shaan (singer) on sister Sagarika (singer)
For the last two years, my sister Sagarika has been in and out of the country, so we haven’t really caught up. This year, she is abroad as well but will return to the city in time and I hope to meet her on August 20. Even if we don’t manage to meet for Raksha Bandhan, we make it a point to celebrate Bhai Dooj later in the year. One of my memories of Raksha Bandhan is of the time, when I was 16 years old. It was the first time I gifted something to her.
I was working in a boutique and I could get some of the apparel at discounted rates. I bought her a black T-shirt (the most discounted) and didn’t think much of it. But she actually wore it often and even though she admitted that she hated it, she said she wore it because it was the only gift I had ever got her. Before that, she would complain that she had to tie the rakhi and give the gift (mostly chocolates): I would insist on it as she was my elder sister (by two years). Now my wife Radhika mostly chooses a nice gift for such occasions. Another memory I have is from the time we were shooting the album, Aisa Hota Hai and we forgot that it was Raksha Bandhan. When someone reminded us, Sagarika managed to pull out some threads from the sofaand curtains and created a rakhi, which she tied to me.
Manasi Joshi Roy (actress) on Sharman Joshi (actor)
Raksha Bandhan is a big, fat occasion in our family and we celebrate it in a major way; all the cousins get together as well. Over the years, it’s been only twice that we have not been in town for the occasion. This year, Sharman is shooting in London for the film 1920 London, so he is not in town. I will send him a rakhi for sure but it will be a low-key affair. This time, my daughter Kiara will celebrate with her cousins. When we were younger and in college, Sharman (who is five years younger) saved pocket money to buy me a special gift, which I thought was very touching. It was a salwar-kameez which didn’t fit me well but it was special. This year, I am expecting a gift from London.
Sunaina Roshan (producer) on brother Hrithik Roshan (actor)
Every Raksha Bandhan, we make sure that we celebrate it in some way. Even if it’s late in the night and we can’t meet, Duggu (Hrithik’s pet name) makes sure that he gives me a call. I remember that once, he was working as an Assistant Director with dad (Rakesh Roshan) on the movie Koyla, so I had couriered the rakhi along with a shirt as a gift. When we finally got to meet each other and I quizzed him if he had liked it, he looked puzzled. We realised that the shirt had gone missing in the courier and had been replaced. We had a good laugh. He has always been there for me and our rakhi gifts have always been a surprise. But the best gift is that he has fulfilled more than his duty of just being a brother, more than what any other brother must have in this world.
Tusshar Kapoor (actor) on sister Ekta Kapoor (producer)
If we aren’t in town together, she sends the rakhi or we connect later on. It is the celebration we used to have in our childhood in our old house at Pali Hill which I will never forget. We took it very seriously then, and boys used to have competitions in our building as to who would get the highest number of rakhis, without realising that they had made all the girls in the building their rakhi sisters! I would take money from my mother and give it as kharchi (gift money) to Ekta. Today, I am allowed to delay my gifts and look for something really good as I think it is better to delay than to give a bad gift. I usually pick up something for her when I am travelling. This year too, I will be going to South Africa, where I plan to look for something. She is very emotional and considers very few people as her close friends, and I am one of those. For me, it is a proof of her genuine affection for me.