61-year-old actor says his heart is filled with gratitude
Sanjay Dutt, one of Bollywood’s top stars, said Wednesday he had emerged “victorious” after being diagnosed with cancer earlier this year.
“Today, on the occasion of my kids’ birthday, I am happy to come out victorious from this battle and be able to give them the best gift I can — the health and well-being of our family”, Dutt said on Instagram.
“My heart is filled with gratitude as I share this news with all of you today,” the 61-year-old star said, one week after confirming the diagnosis. He gave no other details of his treatment however.
In August, Dutt said he was “taking a short break for some medical treatment”, triggering weeks of media speculation.
The actor, nicknamed “Deadly Dutt”, is one of Bollywood’s most bankable and most controversial names.
Dutt shot to fame in a string of 1980s action movies in which he performed his own stunts.
But the star also struggled with substance abuse, including heroin and cocaine, said to have been sparked by the pain of losing his mother, Indian screen icon Nargis Dutt, to cancer.
He returned to make more hits in the late 1980s and early 1990s including “Jeete Hain Shaan Se” (“We Live with Style”), “Saajan” (“Beloved”) and “Khal Nayak” (“Villain”).
His life took a dramatic turn when he was arrested following the Mumbai bombings in March 1993 that killed 257 people. Dutt was convicted in 2006 of possessing guns supplied by mafia bosses who carried out the blasts.
The attacks were believed to have been staged by Muslim underworld figures in retaliation for religious riots in which mainly Muslims died.
He was given a six-year term and spent 18 months in prison before being released in 2007, pending an appeal.
In 2013, his conviction was upheld but his prison term was cut to five years. He was eventually released in 2016.
The actor, who has been married three times, has three children, including 10-year-old twins with his wife Maanayata Dutt. His first wife Richa died in 1996.
In 2018 a film about his life, “Sanju”, was released covering the period from just before Dutt’s Bollywood debut in the romantic drama “Rocky” in 1981 to his release from jail in 2016.