The Govinda, Rani Mukherjee scandal

Last Updated: Sat, Sep 25, 2004 13:00 hrs

Barely had news of Saif Ali Khan’s breakup with Amrita Singh been made public. The latest and perhaps the biggest scandal to hit tinsel town is the one alleging a relationship between our new Bollywood parliamentarian Govinda and everyone’s favourite girl nextdoor Rani Mukherjee.

Both have healthy wholesome family images to uphold. And this liaison would most certainly tarnish their reputation.

But the question, is it true? “It’s certainly true,” says a leading actress. “The two have been seeing one another for several years now. Then in-between they tried to keep away from each other for the sake of his wife and children. But recently they were again spotted together on sporadic occasions. And though both of them have been linked with other people, their relationship is certainly for keeps.”

A very practical problem that arises from what’s evidently a serious and indelible relationship is, can the two get together as a formal couple? Earlier producer Boney Kapoor broke his long-lasting marriage with his childhood sweetheart Mona to marry Sridevi.

Boney and Sridevi now share a very happy and successful marriage. Friends of Govinda and Rani say they can also make their marriage work, if it happens. Says an actress. “See both Govinda and Rani are very simple people. Give them daal-chawal, and a gossip session with friends…and they’re happy. They’re very like-minded. They get along famously.”

But can they get together? As with Boney Kapoor, there are children involved in this tricky transition. Like Boney, Govinda has two children, a son and a daughter, from his marriage. Unlike Boney, it seems improbable that Govinda would take away a father’s presence from his children’s life.

Govinda knows what it’s like to grow up without a father’s presence in the house. His mother whom he worships, brought up Govinda and his siblings single-handedly. It’s unlikely that Govinda would want his wife to go through his mother’s struggle.

That Rani and Govinda are serious about each other is a fact corroborated by mutual friends of the couple. But will they tie the knot finally? Or will they remain a couple for life who never legitimized their relationship, like Uttam Kumar and Supriya Devi, Satyajit Ray and Madhabi Mukherjee in Bengal, and Shobhana Samarth and Motilal in Mumbai?

Neither Govinda nor Rani Mukherjee will speak on the matter. Govinda claims it’s a conspiracy by his political opponents to tarnish his image during election time. Rani has been on world-concert tour with Shah Rukh Khan, Preity Zinta, Arjun Rampal, Priyanka Chopra and Saif Ali Khan (who coincidentally also broke up his marriage recently) for the past one month.

She has been calling friends in India in a distressed state. Since she’s away she couldn’t have “moved in” with Govinda, as a story in Mumbai claims.

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