Ashok Kumar was one of India’s most famous actor. Ashok Kumar was born on 13 October 1911. Today is the 100 birth centenary of Indian cinema’s first superstar. Coincidestly, this day is also related with the death anniversary of his brother Kishore Kumar.
Ashok was the eldest son of Kunjalal Ganguly who was a lawyer and his mother Gouri Devi came from a wealthy Bengali family. His two brothers Anoop Kumar & Kishore Kumar also acted in films. Three brothers worked together in the comedies Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi and Chalti Ka Naam Zindagi.
Ashok Kumar starred in over 275 films. Some of his superhit films are Achhut Kanya (1936), Izzat (1937), Savitri (1937), Nirmala (1938), KanGan (1939), Bandhan (1940), Jhoola (1941), Kismet (1943), Mahal (1949), Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi (1958), Hatey Bazarey(1967), Aashirwad (1968), Choti Si Baat (1975), Mili (1975), Khoobsurat (1980), Khatta Meetha (1981), Mr. India (1987) Parineeta, Bahu Begum, Pakeezah, Ek Hi Raasta, Bandish, Aarti, Afsana & many more. His last film role was in Aankhon Mein Tum Ho in 1997.
Ashok Kumar died at the age of 90 in Mumbai on 10 December 2001 of heart failure. The then Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee described him as “an inspiration… for many generations of aspiring actors.”
The Government of India honoured him with the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1988 and the Padma Bhushan in 1998 for his contributions towards Indian cinema.