Shah Rukh Khan made his film debut in 1992 with Deewana alongside Divya Bharti. He went on to star with her again in Dil Aashna Hai, which was released in the same year. The young actress was married to producer Sajid Nadiadwala and died at the age of 19 after falling from the fifth floor of her balcony in Mumbai.
In an old interview with a leading news agency, Shah Rukh Khan recalled her demise and called her a ‘stunning’ actress, adding that her process was different to his more serious approach.
Talking about Deewana, Shah Rukh said, “I remember I had finished dubbing in Sea Rock Hotel. I dubbed (for]) Deewana. I walked out of Sea Rock, I saw her and said hello. She looked at me and said, ‘You’re not just an actor, you’re an institution.’ I was very touched by that. I said, wow. I didn’t understand it, so I quickly went and read up the meaning of the saying. I realised that it meant a lot.”
Shah Rukh recalled how he found out about her sudden demise and said, “I pray for her soul. I was sleeping in Delhi and they were playing my song, Aisi Deewangi. I thought I’ve become a big star. I didn’t know how to become a big star. The film was a big hit. Suddenly there were these songs playing and I woke up in the morning and I saw that she had died. She had fallen from a window. It was one of the biggest shocks because I think I was supposed to do another film with her.”
In 1990, Divya Bharti made her movie debut in the Tamil film Nila Pennae. Before making her breakthrough with Vishwatma and the hit song Saat Samundar in 1992, she appeared in a number of South Indian films. That year was a turning point for the actress, as she had twelve films released. She also won the Lux New Face of the Year award for Deewana at the 1993 Filmfare Awards. Divya’s last film was Kshatriya in 1993. Following her demise, Shatranj, Rang, and Tholi Muddhu were all released.
See Also: Remembering Divya Bharti