Jiah Khan, Mahesh Bhatt
Jiah Khan, Mahesh BhattGetty Images

Nishabd actress Jiah Khan was supposed to make her Bollywood debut in film Tumsa Nahin Dekha: A Love Story produced by Mahesh Bhatt. But at that time, the 16-year-old had reportedly walked out of the film when the film's crew apparently gave a weird reaction when she donned a bikini for a particular scene.

Mahesh Bhatt was among the few celebrities who had visited Jiah Khan's house after she was found dead. She reportedly committed suicide at the age of 25 by hanging herself by the ceiling fan of her own bedroom.

During the trailer launch of his upcoming film The Dark Side of Life: Mumbai City, Mahesh Bhatt recalled that before committing suicide, Jiah had approached him for work but the filmmaker couldn't help her at that point of time.

"Jiah Khan once came to us asking for work but that time, somehow, we were not able to work with her, but later when she committed suicide and we visited her house, it felt really bad," Mahesh Bhatt said while addressing the media at a press conference in Mumbai.

The filmmaker also shared that his daughter Shaheen too had come to a point of attempting a suicide at the age of 12-13 after falling into depression.

"My daughter Shaheen, Alia's elder sister, she, at the age of 16 discovered finally that she is suffering from clinical depression. In October, she is launching her own memoir in which she has talked about the kind of struggle she has gone through in that phase. She also came to a point of attempting a suicide at the age of 12-13 so, this is the truth of my own house," he said.

Mahesh Bhatt emphasised the lack of mental awareness in our country and how people perceive it as a taboo instead of treating it as a form of illness.

"It's a form of mental illness and it can be treated. When you suffer from diabetes then, you have to take insulin shots. Similarly, when you are prone towards depression then you need to consult a doctor who can treat you through medication but, I think in our country, we are lacking in generating awareness about mental illness. Almost in every household people are suffering from depression," he said.

On January 30, Jiah Khan's boyfriend Sooraj Pancholi was booked with abetment of suicide by a Mumbai session court for the death of the Bollywood actress.

The CBI said that the note written by Jiah before committing suicide had established that Aditya Pancholi's son Sooraj had ruined her life. The three-page note narrated ''intimate relationship, physical abuse and mental and physical torture'' by the actor, which eventually led Jiah to end her life.