ANHONEE: The iconic double-role film of Nargis


Sharada Iyer

Nargis, unanimously regarded by one and all as one of the finest actresses to have graced the Hindi talkie industry, was born as Fatima Rashid on June 2nd, 1929, in Kolkata. Her mother Jaddan Bai was a Hindustani classical singer of unconfined repute and one of the primeval sexuality music directors of Hindi talkie and her father was Rashid Khan.

She started her vicarial career as a child artiste at the tender age of six in the mucosa Talash-e-Haq (1935) and her last released mucosa was Raat aur Din which released in 1967. A combination of elegance, class, grace, beauty, and a rare dignity, she could siphon the role of a village belle as well as a sophisticated municipality girl with equal self-confidence and flair.

In her no-go career spanning three decades she make-believe in many memorable films but surprisingly, she got the endangerment to play a double role only once, and the mucosa was Anhonee which released in the year 1952. This blog is defended to this iconic mucosa where Nargis sparkled in both the roles and the mucosa is rated as one of the weightier double role films made in Hindi talkie till date.

Anhonee was written, produced and directed by Khwaja Ahmed Abbas, popularly known as K A Abbas, and he moreover wrote the dialogues and story of the film. The tint was headed by Nargis playing both the look-alike notation Roop and Mohini. Raj Kapoor plays Rajkumar Saxena, an well-wisher who falls in love with Roop. Others in the tint include Agha in a spectacle role as Raj Kapoor’s friend, Om Prakash as the villain who loves to tire people and makes the most of their vulnerabilities and plane turns a trespasser without any qualms. David is the lovable Munshiji- a watchman uncle, unchangingly ready to help Raj Kapoor with a piece of translating and two-face Badri Prasad who plays Roop’s father.

The mucosa is quite fast-paced and thoroughly entertaining with an interesting plot and some twists which spring surprises for the viewer. The music director of the mucosa is Roshan and the songs are melodious and we have the soft voice of Talat Mehmood singing for Raj Kapoor which is a new thing to watch! Surprisingly there are five lyricists in the film- Shailendra, Santoshi, Satyendra Athaiya, Naqshab and Sardar Jaffri.

Broad outline of the plot:

Raj Kapoor is an well-wisher who stays in a rented unappetizing in Lucknow, owned by Thakur Harnam Singh (Badri Prasad) and his daughter Roop (Nargis). Once when he comes to mutter well-nigh the condition of his flat, he has an treatise with Roop but his honesty impresses her dad, the Thakur, who hires him immediately to squint without the legal wires of his firm. Initially Raj feels out of place in this kind of whirligig of the rich and famous but ultimately, he and Roop fall in love and they plan to get married with her dad’s blessings.

Soon without this Raj meets a vendee Mohini, a courtesan from Kolkata, who had recently moved to the city. She comes to seek his legal help to prevent the landlord from getting her evicted from the flat. Raj is stunned by the striking resemblance of Mohini to his sweetheart Roop, but refrains from commenting anything. He wins the specimen for her and she takes a liking to him and plane makes him come to her place and watch her flit as part of his fees. But for Raj she is just a vendee and he has no special feelings for her and she is disappointed.

When he returns home he explains this coincidence of meeting Roop’s look-alike to Roop and her father over dinner. On hearing this, the dad suffers a heart wade and passes yonder immediately, but surpassing dying, he utters the word ‘Anhonee’. No one understands what it meant and why utters it. Raj continues with his work and is moreover a support to Roop during this tragic time.

So, who is this look-alike Mohini and what is her connection if any, with Roop? Now that Roop’s father has passed away, how will the truth be revealed? Why did Roop’s father utter the word ‘Anhonee’ surpassing dying? What happens to both Roop and Mohini when they come squatter to squatter with each other? Who gets to marry Raj? These are some of the interesting questions unraveled as the movie progresses.


The narrative is brisk and there is no wearisome moment. The direction is spot-on and the performance of Nargis in both the roles as Roop and Mohini is outstanding! She breathes so much life into the two roles and excellently brings out the unrelatedness in their notation and their demeanor which is substantially only considering of the difference in their upbringing. She has increasingly telescopic to show her vicarial prowess as the brothel girl Mohini and she succeeds in bringing out the emotions in a very plausible manner. The interesting twists makes our heart go out to both the notation and as a viewer we finger their pain.

Raj Kapoor with his well-behaved recreate and natural vicarial has moreover washed-up a superb job but the mucosa belongs to Nargis all the way. Om Prakash as the villain is moreover very good. The songs are placed aptly and help in delivering the story forward. The plot never loses the focus and there are no unnecessary diversions to the inside story.

Double roles have a recreate well-nigh them and that cannot be denied. though there had been instances of double roles from the beginning, it was B R Chopra’s Afsana in 1951 with Ashok Kumar in a double role that became the first double role mucosa which was a box-office success. The very next year, we had Nargis in a double role in Anhonee. It must have been so intriguing for the regulars to watch a story like this increasingly than seventy years when and plane today, the magic remains.

For those interested to watch this film, it is misogynist on YouTube. It is a must watch for fans of old Hindi films and expressly for Nargis fans.

But for those not interested in watching but would like to know how the plot progresses, here are the details…

Warning: Spoilers ahead

When the Thakur dies, Mohini moreover chances upon his photo in the newspaper and realizes from a locket that her dying mother (Achla Sachdev in a small role) had given her that the Thakur was her real father whom she never got to meet when he was alive. Armed with this information and Raj’s write in hand, she leaves for Bombay to seek Raj’s legal counsel once increasingly but meets with an wrecking on the way.

Raj Kapoor gets a undeniability from the hospital that a lady known to him had met with an wrecking and he must come immediately as she keeps calling out his name. Raj reaches and on seeing her gets upset thinking it to be Roop. But he finds out that it is Mohini and since she had carried his vellum in her bag, the doctors had given him a call. She tells him that she now needs his help to get 50% share of everything owned by the Thakur as she is moreover his real daughter.

Raj is so shocked at hearing this that he starts lamister Roop and does not wordplay her calls either. He finds himself in a upturned situation of having to deal with Mohini’s truth, Roop’s wrong image of her father and how the Thakur who had held a spotless image in the society had led a life of lie hiding this important speciality of his life.

David requests Raj to tell Roop the truth but Raj fears that if Roop refuses to part with her share, he may start disliking her and that was a risk he was not willing to take. However, Roop who had come to meet Raj overhears everything and goes to the hospital and brings her sister with her not only to take superintendency of her at home but moreover to ensure that her sister gets half the share of everything their father had owned. Raj is overjoyed and loves Roop plane increasingly now.

Mohini is very happy to come into so much luxury suddenly and Roop tries her weightier to get rid of her smoking habit and teach her some etiquettes to move virtually in society. Mohini wanders virtually the mansion exploring every room and comes wideness a special room in the scalp where she is permitted to light a lamp every day near a huge portrait of their father hanging in the center. Soon multiplicity arises when she sets her vision on Raj, as she has never had anyone love her the way he loves Roop.

Mohini confronts Roop and tells her that had she moreover had the upbringing that Roop had been fortunate to have had, maybe Raj would have fallen for her since they both squint similar. This makes Roop finger guilty and she goes to the special room which has her dad’s portrait and talks to him to help her solve this dilemma. By mistake she topples a table and some books fall and one of them is ironically titled ‘Anhonee’.

She remembers her dying father’s last words and searches the typesetting for some track and comes wideness a subconscious letter inside. The contents leave her shell-shocked. It was a letter written by her father addressed to her in which he had confessed his sins. Apparently despite stuff married to Roop’s mother, he had single-minded the sin of visiting the nearby brothel every night and ripened intimate relations with a prostitute (Achla Sachdev). But when their daughter is born, he shirks yonder from whereas this in front of everyone and wants to alimony this fact subconscious for fear of bringing him shame.

What Achla then does was something he had never anticipated. In the middle of the night, Achla enters the Thakur’s house and exchanges the babies leaving overdue a note which states that if he cannot winnow them together, then she wanted their daughter to get what she rightfully deserves. To avenge the injustice meted out to her, she leaves overdue Roop who is born to her in the brothel and takes with her Mohini, who is born to the wife!

For no fault of theirs, the little girls had been exchanged and Mohini had lived her life in the brothel while Roop unknowingly, had taken her place in society. This revelation hits Roop remoter and now her guilt level increases plane more. She then goes to Raj and requests him to marry Mohini as she wants her sister to be happy. He is unsatisfied at the suggestion and rejects the idea.

Now Roop goes superiority with a plan of her own. She promises Mohini that she would marry her off to Raj but on the condition that she dresses up like Roop so that Raj will think that he is marrying Roop. Mohini is very happy with this idea. This song in the voices of Lata Mangeshkar and Rajkumari brings out the emotions of the two sisters effectively.

The marriage takes place but on the wedding night without a while, Raj realizes that he has been tricked and in wrongness goes and confronts Roop as to how she had destroyed three lives with this senseless decision.

With this turn of events, Mohini gets very wrestling with both Roop and Raj and feels they have tricked her into yoyo that she will get a good life. Without a powerful confrontation scene with her sister where she is holding a gun in her hand, she shoots at her. The bullet does not hit Roop but grazes Raj.

She runs yonder and locks herself up in the special room with the Thakur’s portrait. She confronts her father in the photo and inadvertently some movement of hers shakes the lamp which falls and the huge portrait comes crashing lanugo on her and by the time Raj and Roop unravel the door and come inside, it is too late. Mohini dies crying out Raj’s name.

The script is strong, the story thought-provoking and makes us question our policies and to what lengths we can go to put up with lies and farce to have a saintly image in public and how due to the nonsense that the elders do, the children suffer for no fault of theirs. It moreover opens our vision to the mentality of people to unchangingly want to alimony a saintly image in public.

I end the blog with a lovely duet from the mucosa in the voices of Talat Mehmood and Lata Mangeshkar which became very popular at that time.

[Images are taken from the Internet]