Mamta Kulkarni’s Life, Another Dirty Picture in Making
Syed Ali Mujtaba
Bollywood diva of the 1990’s Mamta Kulkarni who was lost in this lonely planet for some time now has finally been discovered to be living in Nairobi, Kenya.
The heartthrob of millions of youth of her generation has converted to Islam and is living with her husband Yousuf alias Vicky Goswami, a drug lord, who after serving prison sentence in Dubai has moved to Nairobi.
It is said that Mamta had a big role in Vicky’s release as she married him while he was serving jail sentence in Dubai. The marriage took place according to the Islamic rituals and both groom and the bride, recited passages of Holy Scripture before being declared husband and wife.
Mamta’s journey in life seems to be a fairy tale that has all the juice and spice for a Bollywood pot-boiler. It just needs a screen play writer to produce another 'Dirty Picture'.
Mamta charmed her way to stardom in Bollywood in the 90’s and then cashing on her physical assets moved into the inner circles of the underworld, finally to settle with Vikram alias Vicky Goswami, a drug lord.
Vicky Goswami (now 52), was a drug baron in South Africa. He first landed there in 1994 after being deported from Zambia for suspected drug trafficking. He left South Africa in 1995 in a huff, after the murder of drug dealer Robert "Rocks" Dlamini.
Vicky moved to Mumbai from where he continued his business. He supplied drugs to filmy personalities and it is then JAB WE MET story of Mamta Kulkarni started.
Mamta showed great interest in Vicky’s business and it seems both were made for each other. It was around 2002, when Mumbai police was looking for Bollywood connection with the underworld that Mamta moved to Dubai along with Vicky Goswami.
In Dubai, Vicky linked up with senior government officials and set up two methaqualone (mandrax) manufacturing plants. His business flourished but a joint sting operation in Mozambique and South Africa led to the unearthing of his drug manufacturing factories in Dubai. Vicky was arrested and sentenced to life imprisonment.
It is reported that when Vicky was in Jail, Mamta stepped into his shoes to control his business. Sources imprisoned with Vicky say that he was treated well in jail. He had access to cell phone and he controlled his business with that.
Mamta use to visit Vicky in jail regularly. She is believed to be instrumental in setting her lover free. Mamta was able to convince the authorities that Vicky has converted to Islam and like to marry her, who has also converted to Islamic faith.
A life sentence in Dubai is in effect 25 years, but prisoners can apply for early release on various grounds. Apart from good conduct, these include converting to Islam and learning to recite passages from the Holy Qu'ran.
Vicky in order to strengthen his clemency appeal, converted to Islam took the name Yusuf and prayed five times a day in order to prove that he has became a devout Muslim and recited passage from the Holy Scriptures daily. While being incarcerated, he got married to Aysha alias Mamta Kulkarni according to Islamic rites. These things speed up his early release and his life sentence was cut short by ten years.
Vicky was released from the Dubai central jail in November, 2012. He was deported to India but since he had no cases pending against him, he left for Kenya along with Mamta Kulkarni. The couple are believed to be living happily in Nairobi.
Mamta Kulkarni was at a point in time, one of the biggest actors in Bollywood. In the ‘90s, she had worked with some of the top stars, including the three Khans, as well as the likes of Govinda and Akshay Kumar who were at the peak of their careers.
Born in 1972 in an ordinary Maharashtrian family, Mamta joined Bollywood at the age of 20. She worked in Tiranga in 1992 with Raj Kumar and Nana Patekar, and carved a niche for herself in the industry.
She got the lead role the very next year in Aashiq Awara with Saif Ali Khan. Both Mamta and Saif won the Best debut film awards that year. In 1993 Mamta paired with film star Govinda in the film Ashant.
Mamta worked in nearly a dozen films in a brief span on two years, and signed up films at random for the next three years. Her film with Akshay Kumar in Sabse Bada Khiladi was a super hit. In 1994, she had another hit Krantiveer with Nana Patekar.
Rakesh Roshan's Karan Arjun was a super hit in 1995, in which Mamta appeared with Shah Rukh Khan. At one point of time, Mamta was working with all three great Khans in Bollywood, Shah Rukh, Salman and Aamir. She did Baazi with Aamir Khan in 1995, which was a big hit.
It was the year 1997; Mamta become the love interest of director Raj Kumar Santoshi, who gave her an item number in the film Ghatak. Their relationship prospered and Santoshi signed her up for his next film China Gate. A quarrel between Santoshi and Mamta, led to her ouster from the film.
It is reported that Mamta complained this matter to underworld don Chhota Rajan, who intervened and Santoshi was forced to take her back. He however pruned her role badly, and gave the dazzling item number ‘Chamma Chamma’ to Urmila Matondkar. This led Mamta to level serious charges against Santoshi including those of sexual exploitation.
By the year 2000, Mamta was nearing a steep decline in her film career. Her film Qila with Umesh Mehra flopped, and Chhupa Rustam with director Madan Mohla too fared badly at the box office.
In 2002, Mamta did the role of a Devdasi in the film Khajuraho, a small B-grade flick, exposing her physical attributes, but that too got bombed.
In a desperate attempt to revive her career, she appeared shirtless on the cover page of the magazine Stardust, but that failed to create any ripples. The steep decline in her film career was evident.
Some say, Mamta’s mother was the reason behind her downfall, as she was greedy, and forced her daughter to sign films recklessly. Whatever may be the case, it was after that, Mamata changed tracks. She started doing shows for selected clients. This included parties thrown by the people from the underworld.
In 1997, she was reportedly paid a large amount to perform at a private function by a legislator from Bihar, who was later arrested after investigations into the Fodder Scam case.
As Mamta allegedly started keeping wrong company her personal life got in the way of her professional life. Her co-stars and producers began to avoid her, as she was found hobnobbing with the dreaded figures of underworld.
In those turbulent years, when Mumbai police was anxious to unravel the Bollywood-underworld connection, Vicky Goswami got struck in Mamta's charm. Mumbai police record shows that Mamta was in relationship with drug smuggler Vicky alias Vikram Goswami, a drugs supplier to those associated with the Hindi film industry.
Their relationship flourished and the lovers moved to Dubai to avoid controversies and crime. It was from 2002 onwards that Mamata Kulkarni totally disappeared from the Bollywood scene.
It is reported that Mamta owns three flats in her name at Sky Anchorage apartment in Andheri West, Mumbai. All the three flats remains locked but Mamta sends maintenance charges for them regularly.
The latest buzz is that the 90’s beauty has got a plastic surgery done on her face in 2010 and has acquired a totally different look. She has obtained a passport from Dubai with a different looking photograph. Speculations are rife that Mamta is trying to erase her identity from her acquaintances in India and wants to live a life of complete anonymity in Nairobi.
The saga of Mamta Kulkarni is not yet over. The South African investigation agencies are still looking for Vicky Goswami for his illicit crimes committed in that country. It’s likely that there will be more news coming about Mamta Kulkarni in times to come.
Syed Ali Mujtaba is journalist based in Chennai. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org