Kajol Devgan was born on 5 August 1974 and is an Indian film actress appearing in Hindi films. She is regarded as one of India’s most successful and talented female actors.During her career, Kajol has received six Filmfare Awards, among eleven nominations and along with her late aunt Nutan, holds the record for most Best Actress wins at the Filmfare Awards, with five. In 2011, the Government of India honoured her with the Padma Shri for her contribution to Indian Cinema.
Kajol made her acting debut in the film Bekhudi (1992) and had her first commercial success with her second film Baazigar (1993) opposite Shahrukh Khan, later with whom she has done several popular movies such as Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (1995), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998), and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (2001). Her performances in all three of these films were praised and earned her Filmfare Awards for Best Actress. Some of her other films of this period include Yeh Dillagi (1994), Gupt: The Hidden Truth (1997), Dushman and Pyaar To Hona Hi Tha (both 1998).
After shooting for Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham… in 2001, she took a sabbatical from full-time acting for five years in order to focus on her marriage. She made a comeback with Kunal Kohli’s Fanaa (2006), for which she received another Filmfare Award for Best Actress. She continued working infrequently through the rest of the decade, playing leading roles in such films as U Me Aur Hum (2008), We Are Family and My Name Is Khan (both 2010). Her performance in the latter earned her a fifth Filmfare Award.
In addition to acting in films, Kajol is a social activist and was also featured as a talent judge for the Zee TV’s dance and singing competition show Rock-N-Roll Family. She is married to fellow Indian actor Ajay Devgn, with whom she has two children.
Kajol left her school St. Josephs convent at Panchgani and started her career at the age of seventeen. Her debut film was 1992’s Bekhudi, which was a box office failure. In 1993, she shot to fame with her second film, Abbas-Mustan’s thriller Baazigar. The film saw her co-starring alongside Shahrukh Khan, with whom she later went on to make a popular pairing in a number of films, all of which were box office successes.
Kajol’s acting style has been described as natural. According to the The Hindu,
What Kajol abounds in is talent and a felicity for expression. Kajol does not act out her scenes and deliver her lines; she inhabits her characters.
Kajol is a goodwill ambassador and patron of The Loomba Trust — a charity devoted to supporting widows and their children around the world, particularly in India. She also works with an NGO called Shiksha. Speaking about the issue, she said:
It’s sad to know that widows are still considered a blight in our society. There are widows who are still not marriageable. I strongly feel for them and take it as a social responsibility to eradicate the issue.
In 2008, Kajol received the Karamveer Puraskar award, which recognizes individuals who have been pivotal in leading change beyond their business by being committed to social issues