Monday, Feb 06, 2023

‘Nothing like love between a man and a woman, starts with lust and…’: Neena Gupta opens up on relationships, her secret marriage and divorce

Actor Neena Gupta, who is now married to Delhi-based Vivek Mehra, recalls her first marriage and divorce taught her not to get bitter in life.

Neena GuptaActor Neena Gupta recalls her first marriage and what she learnt from it. (Photo: Instagram/neena_gupta)

Actor Neena Gupta has made interesting choices in her career and personal life and never shied away from sharing them. The actor, who is married to Delhi-based CA Vivek Mehra, married for the first time when she was only 20. Although, her first wedding didn’t last for long, she is glad that it ended on good terms.

The 63-year-old actor met her first husband during her theatre days in Delhi. In an interview with Humans of Bombay, Neena spoke about the secret marriage. She said, “I think I was 20 years old or something. So I was doing a play with this guy, again in some college. He was from IIT and I went from my college to do a play and we met and we fell in love and then we got married. It didn’t work.”

The actor added, “They (parents) didn’t want me to get married so young. Somewhere I look for logic. Bahar jana hai boyfriend ka saath to shaadi ke bina nahi jana. To iska kya logic hai mujhe samajh nahi aaya. Jo cheez aap chahtein hai ki main na karun, wo to main Delhi main baith kar bhi kar sakti hun. Our marriage was very secretive because he was Bengali and I was Punjabi. He didn’t tell his parents, so not many people knew about it. We did an Arya Samaj wedding with just three of his friends and three members from my family. His grandfather used to stay diagonally opposite to our house and he went to his house and I came to my house. It was a very different kind of thing and not many people knew about it.”


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However, the actor who eventually moved to Mumbai and gained popularity in the world of films, is glad that her first boyfriend was a decent man. She remembers the day when they went to finalise their divorce in the court.

“His grandfather was a lawyer and we were in the court, waiting for our turn and there were many people sitting in the divorce enclosure. So, he asked me ‘coke piyegi?’ and I said ‘haan coke le aana‘, so there was a couple sitting next to us and they were very surprised that divorce lene aaya hai and he is so sweet. So, what I learnt from it is that one should not be bitter. If you love somebody once, how can you suddenly be angry at them? You cannot suddenly hate,” Neena said.

The actor added, “We don’t meet each other. I met him after 20-30 years somewhere out of Bombay and we were so sweet and we talked my parents, his daughter. Bitter hona, gandi baat kehna, I have learnt that Thank God my first boyfriend was a decent guy.”

Later, Neena was in a relationship with former West Indies cricketer Vivain Richards and the two have a daughter Masaba. While Neena never married Viv, she later got married to Vivek and leads a blissful life.


Through this journey of relationships and heartbreaks, Neena believes that a relationship between a man and a woman doesn’t start with love but lust. Love is what she has only experienced for her daughter and fashion designer Masaba.

Sharing her thoughts on it, Neena said, “I don’t think there is anything called love between a man and a woman. I think it starts with lust and then if you get along, you get affectionate towards each other, then it becomes a habit. The only love that I have felt is for Masaba. I don’t know, other people might have felt but mujhe nahi samajh aata. Everything is lust in the beginning and then it can take direction and you can get married or not married or you go with somebody else. It’s only with a child that I feel I can do anything. For my husband I can do a lot but I will not do anything for him like I do for Masaba.”

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Neena was recently seen in Sooraj Barjatya’s directorial Uunchai, which also starred Amitabh Bachchan, Anupam Kher, Boman Irani, Danny Dengzongpa and Parineeti Chopra.

First published on: 22-11-2022 at 12:24 IST
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