Laapata Ladies

National Award-winning filmmaker Ananth Mahadevan claims that Kiran Rao's film Lapataa Ladies is copied from his 1999 film Ghunghat Ke Pat Khol. While some people online support Ananth who is the original writer of Lapataa Ladies, Biplab Goswami insists that the "story, script, dialogues, characterisation, and scenes are all 100 per cent original."

On Saturday, author Nivedita Shukla posted on X (formerly Twitter) to support Ananth. She shared posters of both films and wrote, "In the past I had appreciated Laapataa Ladies, and it is now being celebrated for surpassing views of Animal on Netflix. But little did I know that it has been copied from @ananthmahadevan 's "Ghoonghat ke pat khol". Which was first aired in 1999 on Doordarshan Gold under their Director's cut series."


She also noted that Ananth's film had been taken down from YouTube since the release of Lapataa Ladies. She added, "Surprisingly, the telefilm which was available on YouTube, has now been removed after Laapataa Ladies picked up and Ananth called out the makers. All that morality, work ethic gyan and self-righteousness to dump on the public but when it comes to practicing it then all goes down the drain." Ananth thanked her and other netizens for their support on X by agreeing that his film might have inspired Kiran Rao's movie.

Ananth Mahadevan points out that Lapataa Ladies shares plot elements with Ghunghat Ke Pat Khol, which is about two brides. He told Mid Day, "I have seen Laapataa Ladies and the beginning as well as many incidents are the same. In our film a boy from the city goes to his village to get married. The mix-up happens at the railway station when he asks his new bride who is in a ghunghat, to wait on a bench [while he goes looking for some information]. When he returns, he joins the wrong bride. The story then follows the two women as they correct the mix-up only to realise that they have feelings for the other's partner. So the four characters annul their original marriage, swap their partners again and get married."

Ananth Mahadevan

However Lapataa Ladies and Ghunghat Ke Pat Khol diverge after the initial mix-up. Mahadevan remarked, "The scene where the cop looks at the woman's photograph and can't make out much because she is in a ghunghat is there in my film. Except in my film, it's not a cop but another character."

In response to Ananth's allegations Lapataa Ladies writer Biplab Goswami stated that he had submitted the script to Cinestaan India's Storytellers Contest in 2018 and that his story is original. He said, "I received the first runner-up award for it. I wrote the synopsis a decade ago. My story, script, dialogues, characterisation and scenes are all 100 per cent original. I have not been inspired by any story, movie or novel."

Biplab further explained, "I have not watched Ananth Mahadevan ji's movie. I was also recently asked if it's inspired by Rabindranath Tagore's Bengali novel Noukadubi. A 60-year-old producer called me much before the film's release to tell me that a similar episode happened with his mother when she was a bride. I studied about gender discrimination inequality in villages and male chauvinism when I was a student at the Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute in Kolkata. I won't copy somebody else's story as we are taught the basic ethics and moralities of writing."

Kiran Rao's film Lapataa Ladies stars Nitanshi Goel, Pratibha Ranta, Sparsh Shrivastava, and Ravi Kishan.