Islamabad, Dec 17: The ancestral homes of Bollywood legends Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar will be given the status of national heritage sites, a provincial minister said today.
Mian Iftikhar Hussain, the Information Minister of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, said both actors were a “source of pride for our land” as they were born in Peshawar and steps would be taken to protect their homes in the famous Qissa Khwani Bazar.
Hussain made the remarks while interacting with the media during a visit to the erstwhile homes of the Bollywood stars. He was accompanied by Culture Secretary Azmat Hanif Orakzai, Culture Director Pervaiz Khan and well-known artist Jamal Shah.
The minister directed the Culture Secretary to include the residences of both acting legends in the list of national heritage sites and to contact their current owners for their purchase.
Hussain said the provincial government has decided to make documentaries and stage dramas on the life of these great artists.
“A plan is under consideration to promote our culture by holding conferences at the national and international levels,” he said.
Dilip Kumar was born as Muhammad Yusuf Khan at Mohalla Khudadad in Qissa Khwani Bazar on December 11, 1922.
Dilip Kumar's father, Lala Ghulam Sarwar, was a fruit merchant who owned orchards in Peshawar and what is now Maharashtra.
The family shifted to Mumbai in the late 1920s. During interviews, Dilip Kumar has fondly reminisced about visiting his ancestral home while on a trip to Pakistan. Raj Kapoor, the son of acting legend Prithviraj Kapoor, too was born in Peshawar on December 14, 1924.
The actor-director is best known for a string of hit films he made in the 1950s and 1960s. The homes of both actors in Peshawar are reportedly in a state of disrepair.
The top floor of Prithviraj Kapoor's five-storey house at Dakhi Nalbandi, Peshawar's highest point, collapsed years ago but 60 rooms still survive.
Some relatives of Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan still live in Shah Wali Qataal area of Peshawar.