indian cinema heritage foundation

Sheesh Mahal (1950)

  • GenreDrama
  • FormatB-W
  • LanguageHindi
  • Run Time238 min
  • Length3958.43 meters
  • Number of Reels15
  • Gauge35 mm
  • Censor RatingU
  • Censor Certificate Number2772
  • Certificate Date01/08/1950

Palatial Sheesh Mahal—the monument of everything that was noble.

Its owner Thakur Jaspalsingh, a staunch nobleman, had implicit faith in nothing else but noble blood and high family traditions. He stuck to his convictions so steadfastly that he gave his elder daughter Nalini in marriage to one Kunwar Saheb who had no wealth but owned valuable heritage to noble lood and he had also agreed to give his younger daughter Ranjana to Sundermuk, also a descendant of high blood.

The Thakur was always faithful to his family traditions. To keep up the family prestige he was spending so lavishly on celebrations and festivities that he ultimately entangles himself in heavy debts to one Mahajan, a rich man but of low birth!

The Mahajan, taking advantage of Thakur’s financial difficulties, sends a proposal to marry his son to the Thakur’s younger daughter Ranjana. Thakur Jaspalsingh scornfully rejects the proposal on the ground that only a man of nole blood could think of marrying his daughter, this rebuff enrages the Mahajan so much that he swears to put Sheesh Mahal to public auction.

As bad luck would have it, Sheesh Mahal was soon sold by auction to Durga Prasad, a laourer who had reached the heights of glory of richness through hard and honest work, and who purchases it to satisfy the vanity of his daughter Rupa. The Thakur taking courage in both hands faces the situation manfully and shifts to his old haveli.

But adversities never come singly. Sundermukh, to whom his younger daughter was engaged, turns treacherous and breaks his engagement to Ranjana because her father had now become poor and turns towards Rupa, who is his next target.

The Thakur had to sweat and toil for his bread day in and day out. This hard work tells upon his health but he bears all that with dignified restraint. His son Balram had also to seek a labourer’s ob in a factory but misfortune haunts him there and he meets with an accident. Thus Ranjana is driven by cruel circumstances to seek employment and fate sends her to serve Rupa as a maid-servant and that too in Sheesh Mahal where once she had enjoyed the position of a queen—of course without the knowledge of her father. Her entry in Sheesh Mahal, however, proves a boon in disguise to the family of Durga Prasad. There Ranjana saves Rupa from the evil clutches of Sundermukh. Durga Prasad, overwhelmed by Ranjana’s ideal behavior, intends to marry his son Vikram to her but ill-fate intervenes and…………..

Did Thakur Jaspalsingh bless this marriage proposal? Or did he still stand erect by his principle with determination to break but never to bend?

For an answer, you will have to see the thrilling finish of this great drama on the silver screen.

(From the official press booklet)