That the beautiful Parveen Babi was schizophrenic was a tragic truth that her lovers Mahesh Bhatt and Danny Denzonpga have confirmed to me, the Writer.
But what made her topple over the brink? All those who knew her closely say her condition was controllable. All she needed to do was to stay in a stable relationship and take her medication regularly. So what made her lapse into a paranoid mess?
Friends say it was her obsession with a mega-star that did her in. She constantly ranted about the Mega-star trying to kill her, planting a chip in her head and all sorts of nonsense. Quite clearly she was obsessed with this mega-star. Was it a case of unrequited love? Or was there something more to it?
Whatever transpired between Parveen and the mega-star it destroyed her precarious mental condition.
She vanished from Bollywood in 1983. Nobody knows where she was, or what she did. She returned in 1989 considerably weight-enhanced and spaced out. She remained locked away in her Mumbai apartment, friend-less by choice.
Speaking of her disappearance her co-star Amitabh Bachchan told me after her death, “I don’t really know what happened. It wouldn’t be ethical to talk about her condition. The nature of her illness was such that she was terrified of people; she wanted to be left alone. She deliberately distanced herself from everyone. We felt by associating ourselves with her, we were causing her more grief.”