Amitabh Story Time!!!! There are so many little stories of his life, not even worth an article, more kind of bedtime stories you might tell someone. But I thought it would be nice to share some of my favorites.
Amitabh was born in 1942, to two revolutionaries and scholars. His father, Harivansh Rai Bachchan, was a poet and professor of English at Allahabad University (he would go on to be the first Indian man to get a PhD in English from Cambridge). His mother was a Sikh woman, a fellow professor (of Psychiatry) who had met and fallen in love with Harivansh at work. Harivansh himself was born a high caste Hindu with last name “Srivistav” indicating his status. As a poet, he began using the pen name “Bachchan” (child). At some point after his marriage to a Sikh woman (through which he lost caste and became estranged from his family), he switched to using “Bachchan” as his name in all parts of his life.
When Amitabh was born, the freedom movement was everything to his parents. They named him “Inquilab”, in honor of the cry “Inquilab Zindabad” (long live the revolution) which beat in their hearts. His birth name was “Inquilab Bachchan”. It could be translated to “revolutionary child”.
But a few days after his birth, one of his parents’ close friends, a fellow poet and revolutionary, came to their house saying he had just had a vision about their son. They must change his name, no longer “Revolution”, his name should be “Amitabh”, “The Light That Never Dies”.
Amitabh was born a “child”, a “Bachchan”, a new name that represented poetry and freedom and love and new beginnings. He was born the Revolution, the revolution that would not die. And then he was changed from the Revolution to The Light. Which is what he would become, the Light that took India from it’s revolutionary birth into a new beginning.