MUMBAI: Rajesh Khanna, often referred to as the "first superstar" of Bollywood and the Hindi film industry's biggest heart-throb in his day, died Wednesday after months of being unwell, reports said. He was 69.
He died at his family home in Mumbai after being discharged from hospital earlier this week.
Known as "Kaka" (uncle) to his fans, Khanna was not from an acting dynasty like many big Bollywood names. He was born in the city of Amritsar in the northwest of India in 1942 and enjoyed appearing on stage from his school days.
He made his film debut in "Aakhri Khat" (The Last Letter) in 1966 but his big break came three years later with the runaway hit "Aaradhna" (Worship), followed by many successes in which Khanna typically played the romantic lead.
His prominent hits of the 1970s included "Kati Patang" (Broken Kite), "Anand" (Peace) and "Amar Prem" (Everlasting love).
In total, he appeared in more than 150 Hindi films. (AFP)