Jaya Bachchan had reprimanded Amitabh Bachchan over his affair and made him vow never to work together with Rekha again.
Jaya Bachchan is an Indian film actress and politician. She is currently the Member of Parliament in Rajya Sabha from the Samajwadi Party, serving four terms since 2004. She is particularly known for reinforcing a natural style of acting in both mainstream and “middle-of-the-road” cinema.
In an interview with Stardust in 1978, Rekha made some explosive revelations. She was the most candid she’s ever been. Addressing the controversy around the alleged affair and Bachchan’s decision to not work with her anymore, she said, “At an award function some time ago, I’d recited a few lines. Everyone imagined they were meant for him, but actually it was for Amitabh Bachchan Wife Jaya Bachchan.” She recited the lines in the interview, “I looked at you, you turned your face away. Why? You feel you are badly off, but can’t you see my position is worse? There is deep hurt in your gaze, but can’t you see that the wounds in my heart are deeper than your look?”
Rekha also mentioned the moment she realised Jaya was ‘insecure’ of her bond with Amitabh. “Once, I was looking at the whole (Bachchan) family through the projection room when they came to see the trial show of Muqaddar Ka Sikandar.
Jaya was sitting in the front row and he and his parents were in the row behind her. They couldn’t see her as clearly as I could. And during our love scenes, I could see tears pouring down her face. A week later (after the trial show of Muqaddar Ka Sikandar), everybody in the industry was telling me that he had made it clear to his producers that he was not going to work with me. Everybody else informed me about it but he didn’t say a word on the subject. When I tried to question him about it, he said, ‘I am not going to say a word. Don’t ask me about it‘.”
That’s not it, Rekha made further claims that were even more intriguing. In the same interview, the actress said that Jaya had invited her over to the Bachchan home one day. “Jaya did not mind the relationship as long as she thought her husband was only having a fling. It’s when she realized that he was really emotionally involved that is when it began hurting her.
The Silsila between Amitabh Bachchan Rekha is a favourite tale of industry insiders, who are always eager to uncover new angles each time they’re part of a discussion involving the two superstars. While some swear blind that the co-stars were indeed madly in love even though Bachchan was already married to Jaya Bhaduri, others including Bachchan and Jaya themselves have always called these theories baseless. Rekha, however, has always had a different story to tell.
She said Jaya called me for dinner one evening and though we spoke about everything but him, before I left that day, she made sure to tell me, ‘I will never leave Amit whatever happens.’”
Calling herself the ‘other woman’ for the first time, Rekha said, “People say a wife is always one-up because she has the man. I say the ‘other woman’ is ten-up because the man wants her in spite of having a wife. It is not a question of what Jaya has that I don’t have. What does Jaya have that I have?” she said.
On the other hand, Amitabh had distanced himself from working with Rekha and refuted all the rumours. He went on record to say that he was perfectly satisfied and happy to have picked Jaya as his wife. Even then, a ‘hurt’ Rekha was far from feeling resentment towards the love of her life.
In an interview with Filmfare in November 1984, Rekha spoke of Amitabh’s denial about their affair: “Why should he have not done it? He did it to protect his image, to protect his family, to protect his children. I think it is beautiful, I don’t care what the public thinks of it. Why should the public know of my love for him or his love for me? I love him, he loves me – that’s it! I don’t care what anybody thinks.
If he’d reacted that way towards me in private, I would have been very disappointed. But has he ever done that? I ask you. So why should I care about what he’s said in public? I know people must be saying bechari Rekha, pagal hai us par, phir bhi dekho. Maybe I deserve that pity. Not that he has 10 rollicking affairs! Mr Bachchan is still old-fashioned. He doesn’t want to hurt anybody, so why hurt his wife?” Still as we know Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan are a great bollywood couple.
She continued, “My reaction is not a typical reaction, I know that. But there’s a total fulfilment. We are human beings who love and accept each other for what we are. There’s more happiness in our lives than misery. Nothing else matters. But as long as I’m with that person, I don’t care. I cannot identify with anyone else. Don’t publish this. For he’ll deny it. Then I’ll affirm it.
Then there will be a statement from his camp saying, “No, no. she is nuts like Parveen Babi.” Then I’ll say “No, no. Parveen Babi is not here, but here I am to issue a statement.”
When the media hounded Amitabh Bachchan Wife for a comment on her husband’s alleged affair with Rekha, she said, “By just leaving him alone. You have to have the conviction. I married a good man and a family that believes in commitment. You must not get too possessive, especially in our profession, where you know things aren’t going to be easy. You can either drive the artist crazy or you can help him or her grow. And if he goes, then he was never yours!”