Chandrashekhar (actor)

Chandrashekhar Vaidya (born 7 July 1923), known simply as Chandrashekhar, is an Indian actor and filmmaker working in the Bollywood film industry. He was best known for playing Arya Sumant in the epic television series Ramayan.

Bollywood actor Chandrashekhar (cropped).jpg
Chandrashekhar Vaidya

(1923-07-07) 7 July 1923 (age 97)
TelevisionRamayan (1987)

Early lifeEdit

Chandrashekhar was born in Hyderabad on 7 July 1923.[1][2] He dropped out of college, and moved to Bombay in the early 1940s. He has a diploma in western dancing from the UK.[2][3]

Film careerEdit

Chandrashekhar, on recommendation from singer Shamshad Begum, got his first job with Shalimar Studios in Pune in 1948. He then received junior artist role in Bebas (1950), with Bharat Bhushan as the lead character.[4] He initially played junior artist roles in films like Nirdoshi (1951), Daag (1952), Farmiash (1953), Meenar (1954).

He has appeared in about 250 films since his appearance in the 1954 film Aurat Teri Yehi Kahani as an actor. His first film as hero was Surang (1953), produced by V. Shantaram. Some of his characters, as the supporting actor which became popular came in films like Gateway of India, Fashion (1957), Barsaat Ki Raat (1960), Baat Ek Raat Ki, Angulimaal (1960), Rustom-E-Baghdad (1963), King Kong (1962), and Jahan Ara (1964).

He also produced, directed and acted in as the lead hero his hit musical film Cha Cha Cha (1964), which was the first film of Helen in a lead role. Cha Cha Cha is one of the films featured in Avijit Ghosh's book 40 Retakes: Bollywood Classics You May Have Missed. In 1966, he directed and produced his second film Street Singer.[5]

Chandrashekhar was the leading man in films like Surang (1953), Kavi and Mastana (both 1954), Baradari (1955), Kali Topi Lal Rumal (1959), Street Singer, and in a negative role in Basant Bahar. It was after 1968, that Chandrashekar was not getting offers to act in a leading role, and he subsequently moved into character roles. He was regular character actor in directorial ventures of Shakti Samanta and films with Rajesh Khanna as the lead hero, with films like Kati Patang, Ajnabee, Mehbooba, Alag Alag.

From 1971 onwards until 1987, he acted as a character actor in films like Hum Tum Aur Woh, Dharma, Gehri Chaal, Charitraheen, Vardaan, Ranga Khush, Shakti, Shankar Dada, Anpadh, Saajan Bina Suhagan, Karmayogi, The Burning Train, Namak Halaal, Nikaah, Ayaash, Maan Gaye Ustaad, Disco Dancer, Sharaabi, Sansar, Hukumat.

Chandrashekhar decided to work as assistant director to Gulzar at the age of 50, when he felt, he needed to do more in film industry. He assisted Gulzar in films like Parichay, Koshish, Achanak, Aandhi, Khushboo and Mausam between 1972 to 1976.

He also played character role of Arya Sumant as Dasharatha's prime minister in Ramanand Sagar's TV series Ramayana at the age of 65.

In late 1988, Chandrashekhar was offered roles as "old man" in-character roles of policemen, fathers or judges in films like Tamacha (1988), Elaan-E-Jung, Mera Pati Sirf Mera Hai, Jawani Zindabad, Gurudev, Humshakal (1992), and Waqt Ka Badshah.

Other workEdit

Chandrashekhar served as President of the Cine Artistes Association (CINTAA) from 1985 to 1996. He served in different capacities as President of the Federation of Western India Cine Employees, All India Film Employees Confederation, trustee of Cine Artistes Welfare Fund of India and Cine Artiste Welfare Trust, Vice-President of Indian Film Directors Association, associated as Member with Film Writers Association, Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association.[6]

He retired from the industry in 2000 after appearing in Khauff at the age of 78.

Chandrashekhar's son Ashok Shekhar is a known television producer and also runs an events and celeb management company; Chandrashekhar's grandson Shakti Arora is an actor.[7][8]



Producer and directorEdit

  • Cha Cha Cha (1964)
  • Street Singer (1966)

Assistant directorEdit



  1. ^ Ashok Raj (1 November 2009). Hero Vol.1. Hay House, Inc. pp. 215–. ISBN 978-93-81398-02-9.
  2. ^ a b "Yesteryear actor Chandrashekhar is 97 years young! (Where Are They Now?)". Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  3. ^ IANS (7 July 2013). "Veteran actor Chandrashekhar turns 90!". Archived from the original on 26 October 2013. Retrieved 21 November 2013. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Yesteryear actor Chandrashekhar is 97 years young! (Where Are They Now?)". Retrieved 8 April 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ "Chandrashekhar ninety seven and still cha cha cha". Glamsham. Retrieved 8 April 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ "Yesteryear Bollywood actor Chandrashekhar Vaidya is 97 years young!". The New Indian Express. Archived from the original on 6 August 2019. Retrieved 8 April 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ Neha Maheshwri, TNN (19 April 2012). "Shakti Arora is Chandrashekhar's grandson". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 4 December 2012. Retrieved 28 August 2013. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "Silsila Badalte Rishton Ka's Shakti Arora shares a picture with 96-year-old grandfather and veteran actor Chandrashekhar - Times of India". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 22 May 2019. Retrieved 8 April 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External linksEdit