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Dilip Kumar pushed Lata Mangeshkar to learn and speak Urdu.

Saira Banu, who died alongside her late husband, paid tribute to their close relationship.

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Saira Banu Khan, in honor of Raksha Bandhan, wrote a touching Instagram post about the brother-sister relationship her late husband, the actor Dilip Kumar, shared with the singer Lata Mangeshkar. A video and three still images depicting the brothers tying a rakhi around the wrists of their respective siblings were sent with the note.

Each photo captured a sweet moment between the two renowned Bollywood actors. Beyond the glitter of their spectacular stardom, “the Kohinoor of Indian Cinema, Dilip Sahib, and the nightingale of the Music Industry of India, Lata Mangeshkar, held a connection. Saira began her tender love letter by saying, “They were like brothers and sisters. 

Saira noted that Dilip was the one to stress the necessity of speaking fluently to Lata, one of many incidents she related in the post. His encouragement and instruction in the importance of proper pronunciation in learning Urdu led Lata to seek out private instruction from an Urdu tutor.

“Sahib instructed Lataji on how the beauty of the nukta, a simple sound added to words, is at the very core of Urdu. According to Sahib, fluency in spoken languages is a need. Lataji, being the dutiful sister that she is, took his advice and found an Urdu teacher to help her out. Their love is so precious that Saira felt compelled to write an homage to them, in which she gushed about how the world has since heard her “perfect pronunciation” in her songs.

The former Bollywood starlet further revealed that Dilip and Lata would always make time to honor the festival of Raksha Bandhan.

They would always make time to see one another on Rakshabandhan so that Lataji could place the holy rakhi on Sahib’s hand, even if they were both extremely busy that day with work, travel, or other responsibilities. To my joy, they continued this tradition year after year, and I showed my appreciation by sending her a brocade sari tailored to her preferences.

Saira reflected gratefully on the fact that their relationship had endured until Dilip’s death in 2022 and recalled the final time they had spent together. They stayed together “in sickness and in health,” as she put it. She paid frequent visits to Sahib at our place, and the two of them would eat meals together. When she last visited, she fed him with her own hands, and the two of them were such a sweet sight. Their love was so great, it was tremendous!

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