They say what’s in the name. But for Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar, it was all about the name. It isn’t a hidden fact that Akshay’s real name is Rajiv Bhatia. But not many know the actual reason behind his name change. Akshay is still called Rajiv by his near and dear ones. And the star has never really spoken about why he preferred a different screen name just before his Bollywood 1991 film Saugandh as the main lead. But not anymore. Akshay himself revealed the story behind rechristening himself as Rajiv, and the reason is as exciting, as it is amusing.
Akshay, who will next be seen in an important special appearance in this weekend release Naam Shabana, was in capital New Delhi for one of its promotions. According to a HT report, one of Akshay’s fans asked the question as to why he gave up his original name — Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia? The audience could never have guessed Jolly LLB 2 star’s reply.
“No one has ever asked me this question. My first film was Aaj (1987), which was directed by Mahesh Bhatt and starred Kumar Gaurav. The name of Gaurav’s character was Akshay. I had a 4.5-second role in it and I would only observe Gaurav and his acting. I don’t know what happened but one day I just went to the court and got my name changed,” Akshay said.
He went on, “I don’t know why I changed my name. I just went to the Bandra East court and got it done. Main kuch bhi nahi tha us time pe phir bhi maine visiting card banwaye. Then I went out to get work, time was in my favour, and I got films after that.”
Akshay’s changed name might have proved to be a lucky one for him, but we cannot ignore the fact that Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia has been equally good for him. After all, Akshay’s home banner Hari Om Entertainment, based on his maiden name, has produced hits like OMG–Oh My God, Holiday, Airlift and Rustom.