Parveen was born in Junagarh, Gujrat in 1949. She was born into a Muslim family. She did her early schooling from Mount Carmel High School, Ahmedabad and later attended St. Xavier’s College, Ahmedabad where she earned a BA in English Literacture. Her father, Vali Mohammed Khan Babi was a system administrator with the Nawab of Junagadh. Parveen was born fourteen years after the marriage of her parents and was their only child. She lost her father at the age of ten.
Parveen Babi modelling career began in 1972 and was quickly followed by her film debut with the film Charitra (1973). The film was a resounding flop, but Parveen was noticed and was snapped up for several more films. Her first major hit was Majboor, after that Suhaag, Kaala Patthar, Namak Halaal, Kala Sona, Chandi Sona, Amar Akbar Anthony, Deewar, Kranti and Shaan.
Finally, she “disappeared” from the film scene in 1983, without informing anyone about her whereabouts, a perception that allowed for exaggerated rumours and pompous claims to be whispered in the industry that she might be “under the control” of figures in the “underworld”.
She would often appear in popular film songs which have become the craze of the young generations and such song picturizations involved glamorous costumes and ravishing film sets and in time would become hugely popular, and this includes “Jawaani Jaaneman” and “Raat Baaqi Baat Baaqi” in Namak Halaal, “Pyaar Karne Waale” in Shaan and “Maara Thumka” in Kranti and this popularity made her among the highest paid actresses in Bollywood at those times. She would appear on the front page of every film magazine.
Parveen never married, but media tabloids speculated that she may have had relationships with men in the film industry such as director Mahesh Bhatt, Kabir Bedi, Danny Denzongpa. She was also rumored to have had an affair with her co-star of many films, Amitabh Bacchan with whom she later developed irrational fears as she accused him of trying to kill her.
After withdrawing from show business, she took up keen interests in music, piano, painting, architecture, literature, writing, cultural and archaeological study, politics, photography, sculpture and human rights issues. She also made numerous contributions to newspapers and magazines from 1973 to 1992.
She was found dead on 22 January 2005 after her residential society secretary alerted the police that she had not collected milk and newspapers from her doorstep for three days. She was found to have gangrene of the left foot as a complication of her diabetic condition. It is possible that she was unable to walk in her last days due to a gangrenous foot and required the use of a wheelchair to move inside the house. A post-mortem was conducted and reports showed that there were no traces of food in her stomach, but some alcohol (possibly from her medication) was found and it is possible that she had not consumed anything for more than three days and as a consequence starved to death.
Parveen Babi converted to Christianity during the last years of her life, as she stated in an interview, and was baptized expressed a desire to be buried as per Christian rites, but her relatives who were Muslims claimed her body after her death and buried her as per Islamic rites near Muslim cemetery in Santacruz, Mumbai. After her death the State Administrator General of Maharashtra became sole custodian of her properties and assets, and took responsibility for the management of them.
Five years later, due to a shortage of land space for burials, Parveen Babi’s grave along with other luminary celebrities were interred at Santa Cruz Muslim Cemetery, were exhumed and their remains were disposed of (relocated) to provide space for new burials.
Her few famous songs are here –
Movie – Namak Halal
Movie – Shaan