Veteran journalist Ali Peter John, on his 67th birthday, released his book Love Letters From Legends To A Vagabond – a collection of fifty letters to him from the legends of Hindi Cinema in his career spanning fifty years. Interestingly, the occasion saw Ali Peter John receiving his 51st letter from Shah Rukh Khan.
Ali Peter John’s book, Love Letters From Legends To A Vagabond, printed by SL Prakashan, has letters from Dev Anand, Amitabh Bachchan, Sunil Dutt, Dilip Kumar, Jacky Shroff, Rekha, Jaya Bachchan, Subhash Ghai, Sonu Nigam, Pran, Yash Chopra, Vinod Khanna, Sachin Bhaumik,Raveena Tandon, BR Chopra, Simi Grewal, Hridaynath Mangeshkar, Lata Mangeshkar, Ramanand Sagar, Rohini Hattangadi, Dara Singh, Sooraj Barjatya, Asrani, Amrish Puri, Chandrashekhar, Bhawana Somaaya, Rishi Kapoor among others.
Ali Peter John’s column Ali’s Notes in Screen was a feature for 44 years. Bachchan admits in his letter of the impact of Ali’s column on him, “I walked out of my house today feeling better, a little more jauntier, and my adrenaline flowing in excess… I really have no words to adequately express my joy and my thanks for the coverage of my interview today.”
“Water offers great resistance to nothing but flows around all things but it will erode anything that stands in it‘s way for long. With its character of flowing over, under, on the sides, in front, in the back and through anything which it erodes, it is almost impossible to stop. Always remember that whenever its flow stops… it starts to stagnate! I believe our lives should be lived in such a manner!! You should be proud of yourself ’cause I am!!!,” writes Rekha.
This is a feeling that Kumar Mohan, Editor-In-Chief, Bollywood & TV Reporter echoes, “Ali Peter John met with an unfortunate accident that cost him his toes recently. The next morning from the hospital, he sent me his next column. Such is his energy and zest for life.”
Subhash Ghai admits that Ali Peter John is “motivating” while Vinod Khanna confesses that Ali Peter John has “lived a full life and experienced more than an average human being.”
Simi Grewal says that she touched and moved by Ali Peter John’s beautiful feelings that “I wish this piece could be published in every magazine in the world.”
Lata Mangeshkar admits that she has been reading his column and tells him “you have always been very generous in your words of praise for me.”
But the last word comes from Dev Anand who writes below his note “from one of your fans, love Dev Anand.”