Govind Singh Ahuja aka Govinda is a former politician, comedian and Indian film actor. He has got 12 nominations for Filmfare Awards, a Filmfare Award for Best Comedian, a Filmfare Special Award, and 4 Zee Cine Awards. He was born in a Punjabi family on December 21, 1963 to actress/singer Nirmala Devi and former actor Arun Kumar Ahuja. His father is also known for his great performance in Aurat (1940) by Mehboob Khan. He produced a film which was not successful. After producing the film, he became ill. Earlier, the family was living in a bungalow located at an up-market location, Carter Road of Mumbai. Govinda was born in Virar, a northern suburb of Mumbai. He is the youngest child with his 5 elder siblings. He got pet name “Chi Chi” which refers to “Little Finger” in Punjabi.
Govinda graduated in Commerce at Annasaheb Vartak College, Vasai. After graduation, his father recommended him to choose filming as his career. He saw a film “Disco Dancer” around that time. He was so influenced with it that he practiced dance for several hours and circulated his own promotion on VHS cassette. He got the offer for an Allwyn ad and a commercial for fertilizer. He made his entry into Bollywood with Tan Badan, directed by Anand, his uncle. He started shooting for Love 86 in 1985. He signed 40 other films along with it.
The first film for him was Illzaam (1986) which was successful in box office as the 5th biggest hit of the year. The song “Street Dancer” featuring Govinda doing break-dance became the turning point of his career and he became a dancing fame. He acted in several films and he got mixed success. He acted in films of several genres during the 1980s, including romance, action, comedy and melodrama. The pair of Govinda and actress Neelam was highly praised and they did several films together like Khudgarz (1987), Love 86 (1986), and Hatya (1988).
Some of his successful family drama films were Jeete Hain Shaan Se (1988), Dariya Dil (1988), and Hum (1991). Some of his superhit action films were Jung Baaz (1989) and Marte Dum Tak (1987). In 1989, Taaqatwar was the first project in which he worked for the first time with David Dhawan. He also worked with Sridevi and Rajnikant in a film Ghair Kanooni.
He is known as “No. 1” due to his series of movie titles ended with “No. 1”, such as Hero No. 1, Coolie No. 1, Anari No. 1, Aunty No. 1, Beti No. 1, and Jodi No 1. The amazing fact is that all of his “No.1” films were superhit and of comedy genre. After Akshay Kumar, he is the only actor who had a film series with a unique title. Just like Akshay got his “Khiladi” tag, he got his “No. 1” tag. He appeared in around 165 films. He was voted as the 10th greatest actor of screen by BBC News users. He had some box office flops in the decade of 2000s. However, he had some commercial successes, such as Partner (2007), Bhagam Bhag (2006), and Life Partner (2009).
He was one of the judges in Season 2 of a dance reality show Dance India Dance (Super Moms) in 2015. He was the member of a political party, Indian National Congress, along with his acting career. He was elected for Mumbai North Constituency as the 7th Member of Parliament in 2004 in 14th Lok Sabha Elections, defeating Ram Naik of BJP. He did films in several genres in the 1980s, including drama, family, romance and action.