Dharmendra was born in Phagwara, Punjab to Jat (Sikh) father Kewal Kishen Singh Deol and Sikh mother Satwant Kaur. At the peak of his film career he was considered the handsomest actor in bollywood and a matinée idol.Currently he is a member of the 14th Lok Sabha of India. He is considered one of the biggest Bollywood superstar. He represents the Bikaner constituency of Rajasthan and is a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) political party. He was recently awarded the Lifetime achievement award for his contribution to Hindi cinema.
He rose to fame as an punjabi actor who appeared in more than 200 Hindi films since the early 1960s. He married Prakash Kaur and later actress Hema Malini. He is the father of actors Sunny Deol and Bobby Deol he also has 2 married daughters Vijeta and Ajeeta known as Dolly and Nonu who have been successfully kept away from the bollywood industry, from Prakash Kaur Deol.
He is also the father of actress Esha Deol and Ahana Deol from Hema Malini. His brother Ajit Singh Deol is a former director and did a Cameo of a truck driver in the film pratigya. He is the uncle of actor Abhay Deol, who is the son of his younger brother Ajit Deol. His father was Kewal Kishen Singh Deol, a school headmaster in Punjab.
Dharmendra is the only actor to have starred with almost all the Kapoor members except Kareena Kapoor and Prithviraj Kapoor.
Dharmendra has starred in a large number of hit films in Bollywood and is considered a living legend. The "HE-MAN" as he is often called as, has given blockbusters consistently from 1962 till 1995 as lead hero alone. He was first noticed in a Filmfare spot-the-talent contest and came to Mumbai to become an actor. He was signed by Arjun Hingorani for the film Dil Bhi Tera, Hum Bhi Tere (1960)
At the start of his career he was usually cast as a romantic hero and later in the period 1974 onwards as action hero. He starred with several big leading ladies at the beginning of his career. With Nutan in Soorat aur Seerat-1962 and Bandini-1963, Mala Sinha in Anpadh-1962 and Pooja Ke Phool-1964, Saira Banu in Shaadi-1962 and Aayi Milan Ki Bela-1964 and one of the most influential persons with whom he was associated, Meena Kumari in Main Bhi Ladki Hoon-1964, Kaajal-1965, Poornima-1965 and Phool Aur Paththar-1966 etc.
Dharmendra even though acted with many heroines his pairing with following made larger impact -Sharmila , Asha Parekh ,Zeenat Aman , Parveen Babi and Hema Malini.
His most successful pairing was with Hema Malini with whom he has acted in as many as 27 movies of which 20 are more popular . Most of these movies were hits which in turn propelled producers to cast them in romantic films in the 70s. Dharmendra and Hema acted in many blockbusters like Sholay, Charas, Aas Paas, Jugnu, Seeta Aur Geeta, The Burning Train, Tum Haseen Main Jawan, Naya Zamana, Sharafat, Raja Jani, Dost, Pratigya, Azaad, Maa, Dream Girl, Chacha Bathija, Dilaagi, Ali Baba Aur Chalis Chor, Samraat, Bhagavat, and the last being a flop, Razia Sultan. This despite the fact that it was the era of Amitabh Bachchan who starred in action movies.
Dharmendra married twice and has maintained both his wives. His first marriage was to Prakash Kaur at the age of 19 in 1954 His second marriage was to the Bollywood actress Hema Malini. They are said to have fallen in love on the sets of Sholay (1975) although they have made many films together before and after Sholay. From his first marriage he has two daughters who are settled in California and two sons who are also successful actors: Sunny Deol and Bobby Deol. From his second wife Hema Malini whom he married on 2 May 1980, he has two daughters: Esha Deol, who is an actress, and Ahana Deol. His nephew Abhay Deol is also an actor.
Dharmendra has gone on record saying he did not believe the Mumbai film industry was a place suitable for girls. He was unperturbed by his sons Sunny and Bobby joining the industry, he was vocal about his displeasure regarding his daughter Esha's choice of profession.
He has recently become active in politics. He was elected as a Member of Parliament in the 2004 general elections, from Bikaner in Rajasthan, on a Bharatiya Janata Party ticket. During his election campaign, he made an ironic remark that he should be elected Dictator Perpetuus to teach "basic etiquette that democracy requires" for which he was severely criticized.
source : entertainment.oneindia