Maine Pyar Kiya made Bhagyashree a star overnight Sooraj Barjatya and his family had close relations with the royal Patwardhan family of Sangli. Once during a family celebration, Sooraj Barjatya had seen the exceptionally beautiful and shy Bhagyashree and was left flabbergasted by her spellbind charm and aura. At the very first sight he made up his mind to cast her as his heroine but was reluctant to approach her as he felt she might not agree. Later Sooraj Barjatya was surprised to see her perform in TV serial Kachchi Dhoop and was quite impressed by performance. That’s when he gathered courage and approached her father with the proposal. Her father entertained him but Bhagyashree looked upset. Nevertheless when he narrated the script Bhagyashree however categorically said no to the film, Sooraj Barjatya was shattered! However Sooraj Barjatya did not give up his hope and visited her house 7 to 10 times and cajoled her for the role. Finally Bhagyashree gave her nod but had a bagful of conditions. Since her family was conservative she declined to wear glamorous costume and do intimate scenes. Readers would be surprised to know that Bhagyashree was doing her B.Com studies while doing the film and had made it clear that she will not skip college. Hence she attended her college in morning and did shooting in evening at 4 pm. The shooting would wrap at 3 or 4 a.m. She would rush home take little nap and go to college at 7 a.m. However the hard work paid-off as Maine Pyar Kiya was a huge hit. The film won her Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut for Maine Pyar Kiya. In nutshell Maine Pyar Kiya immortalized Bhagyashree in the annals of Indian cinema.
Bhagyashree wanted to go abroad for education Though Bhagyashree hails from the royal family in Maharashtra’s Sangli city, she was born and brought up in Mumbai like normal children. In her interview she said she used to visit Sangli thrice a year and would be embarrassed by royal reverence made towards her. Her father, despite being a royal prince was down to earth and had passion for education. He was an accomplished lawyer, an engineer, a businessman with factories in Mauritius, Africa and all around the globe. Like her father Bhagyashree too was a studious student. She wanted to go abroad for studies but destiny had other plans.
Bhagyashree’s parent did not attend her wedding Bhagyashree fell in love with Himalaya Dassani at school. It was a childhood love that blossomed over the years. They both studied in same school but Bhagyashree’s father was against their relation hence Bhagyashree rebelled and left her parents for her love Himalaya. Her parents also protested that Bhagyashree was making a mistake by marrying at a young age but Bhagyashree was blind in love and discarded her parents concern. Bhagyashree married Dassani in 1990 but her parents did not attend the wedding. From Bhagyashree’s side Salman Khan and Sooraj Barjatya’s family attended the wedding. After the birth of their first son Abhimanyu, the rift between her and her family was resolved.
Bhagyashree won her first TV serial accidently In Mumbai, her neighbor was actor and filmmaker Amol Palekar. His daughter Shalmalee and her sister Purnima were of the same age hence they were great friends. Hence when Amol Palekar started the TV serial Kachchi Dhoop (1987) he offered Purnima a role as Shalmalee was also working in the TV serial. It was a children drama about a mother’s poignant trauma and her three daughters. On the first day of the shooting when everything was ready and shooting was to commence, Amol Palekar was in tight spot as the third girl to play the third sister did not report on sets. Hence Amol Palekar requested Bhagyashree (who had come to see her sister’s acting) to play the third sister. Initially she resisted as she had not worked in any play but Amol Palekar cajoled her and interestingly she became the most famous among the three girls in the TV serial. Later she did few more TV serials as child star Honi Anhoni and Kisse Miya Biwi Ke Bhagyashree had declined Maine Pyar Kiya Sooraj Barjatya, the grandson of Tarachand Barjatya, was making his debut film Maine Pyar Kiya hence there was a lot of talk around. But Sooraj Barjatya had no air. He wanted to make the film on small scale and roped in new artist for the film. He had already signed a new comer Salman Khan and approached Bhagyashree father to sign her in the heroine role. He had seen Kachchi Dhoop and was quite impressed by Bhagyashree. But Bhagyashree was not interested in film career and wanted to go to US and study but her father was against sending her to US as he was aware Bhagyashree’s boy friend Himalaya Dassani too was accompanying her. He was against their union. Hence Bhagyashree was forced to do the film but call it destiny the film broke all records and became a landmark classic. Bhagyashree was flooded with roles. After Maine Pyar Kiya Bhagyashree’s career was ruined After the huge success of Maine Pyar Kiya, Bhagyashree was flooded with offers from big banners but Bhagyashree killed her career herself as she got married to her childhood friend Himalaya Dassani. To make things worse she insisted filmmakers to work only with her husband, Himalaya. Since she was so popular few filmmakers agreed to her condition. The result was that both her films Qaid Mein Hai Bulbul and Payal released in 1992 were total washout! To make matter worse Bhagyashree made a statement in press that she wasn’t comfortable doing intimate scenes with Salman Khan in Maine Pyar Kiya. She informed media that since she is married hence intimacy begins and ends at home. According to Bhagyashree this statement created flatter and producers began declining and she was forced to quit Bollywood. Bhagyashree had to sought relief in regional cinema and TV After a disastrous failure in Bollywood, Bhagyashree had to seek relief in regional cinema. She did Mappillai Manasu Poopola (Tamil); Ammavra Ganda (Kannada); Rana (Telugu), Janam Janam Ke Saath (Bhojpuri): Mumbai Aamchich (Marathi). She even did Sati Behula, a Bangladeshi film. Besides regional cinema she continued working on TV for her survival. Some of her popular TV serials are Didi Ka Dulha; Samjhota; Saraab; Aandhi Jasbaton Ki; Jaan; Sambandh etc.
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