Dedh Ishqiya

Dedh Ishqiya
Dedh Ishqiya Teaser Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAbhishek Chaubey
Produced by
Screenplay by
  • Vishal Bhardwaj
  • Abhishek Chaubey
  • Gulzar
Story byDarab Farooqui[1]
Music byVishal Bhardwaj
Edited byA. Sreekar Prasad
Distributed byShemaroo Entertainment
Release date
  • 10 January 2014 (2014-01-10)
Running time
148 minutes[2]
Budget370 million[3]
Box office408 million[3]

Dedh Ishqiya (transl. One and a half passionate) is a 2014 Indian black comedy film directed by Abhishek Chaubey starring Madhuri Dixit, Arshad Warsi, Naseeruddin Shah, and Huma Qureshi in the lead roles. Produced by Raman Maroo of Shemaroo Entertainment and by Vishal Bharadwaj, it is a sequel of Ishqiya (2010). It was released worldwide on 10 January 2014.[4] The film received generally positive reviews and was a average grosser at the Box Office.


Khaalujaan (Naseeruddin Shah) and his nephew Babban (Arshad Warsi), who are partners in crime, pose as a Nawab and his attendant, and manage to run away with a prized necklace from a jewellery shop. During the police chase, they get separated; Babban escapes, while Khalujaan is injured, the necklace seemingly lost. Babban goes to meet his boss Mushtaq Bhai (Salman Shahid), who makes him dig his own grave, ostensibly for himself. Babban manages to escape, with the promise that he will bring back both the necklace and Khaalujaan.

Months later, Babban traces Khalujaan, again posing as a Nawab, this time at a poetry contest. It is a mushaira (gathering of poets) organised by Begum Para (Madhuri Dixit), the widowed Begum of Majidabad, supposedly in compliance with the wishes of her deceased husband. The winner of the poetry contest will win the widowed Begum as his bride, and become the Nawab of Majidabad.

Babban confronts Khalujaan on the opening night of the contest, and tries to get him to return with him. However, Babban decides to stay when he has a glimpse of Muniya (Huma Qureshi), Begum Para's companion and attendant. On the other hand, Khalujaan has his task cut out as not only must he contend with several talented shaayars (poets), but also convince the Begum of his love.

To complicate matters, there is another wild-card in the fray, a local MLA-gangster named Jaan Mohammed (Vijay Raaz), who is holding the poet Nawab Italwi (Manoj Pahwa) in captivity, forcing him to write poetry for Jaan to recite at the contest. The contest proceeds; while Khalujaan has his heart set on Begum Para herself, Babban is smitten with Muniya. Khalujaan tries to impress the Begum by giving her the prized necklace which he had stolen earlier, but on the final day, Begum declares Jaan Mohammed to be the victor. She declares that she will marry him and then he will become the new nawab of Majidabad.

Since the necklace has clearly failed to move the Begum, Khaalujaan decides to see if a gun will serve the purpose better. However, even as he approaches the Begum brandishing his chosen instrument of persuasion, he finds the dowager being hustled away at gunpoint by a masked man. Khalujaan chases them and blocks their way only to discover that the masked man is none other than his nephew Babban. It turns out that the Begum had plotted her own kidnapping in order to extort money from the nawab-elect (Jaan Mohammad). More twists are then revealed: the Begum was nothing but a dancing-girl (courtesan) who had seduced a middle-aged nawab and married him, only to find that the nawab was actually a pauper who supported his lavish way of life by selling his inherited properties and jewels. He also neglected his wife, who (it is very strongly suggested) developed a relationship of intimacy with a sympathetic maid-servant, Muniya. By the time the nawab died of good living, he had become completely bankrupt and even his palace had been mortgaged to the money-lenders. After his death, the penniless Begum had been helped financially and courted by Jaan Mohammad, who was besotted with her. He also wanted the title and status of being the "Nawab of Majidabad", which according to the movie would be conferred on the man who marries the widowed Begum.

However, Jaan Mohammad is a man of low birth and uncultured mannerisms, a former street-thug turned politician, with an entourage of sycophantic hoodlums. The idea of marrying such a man was repellent to the Begum, who was anyway in love with her maid-servant. However, Jaan Mohammad's debt and his persistence leave the Begum with no choice but to announce a competition for her suitors, as a tactic to delay responding to Jaan's advances.

Thus, the mushiara was conceived an elaborate hoax: the late Nawab had never stipulated that his widow should marry someone else, much less that the winner should be recognized as "Nawab of Majidabad." It was the Begum's own idea, the purpose being to snare a rich man and marry him. The Begum did not want to marry Jaan Mohammad, but she wanted his money, therefore she was staging a kidnapping in order to receive a ransom from Jaan Mohammad. She has employed Babban to act as her kidnapper and extort a hefty ransom from Jaan Mohammad, who was expected to pay up because otherwise he would never fulfill his dream of becoming a Nawab.

Babban duly phones Jaan Mohammed (who is by now aware of the Begum's cunning plan) to bring a ransom of 10 crore (100 million) rupees in cash to the railway station. All four of them (Begum, maid, and the uncle-nephew duo) reach the railway station to collect the money, but find that they are surrounded by Jaan Mohammad's mob. To their good fortune, Nawab Italwi arrives with a police force and cross-firing starts. Begum and Muniya escape from the situation leaving behind Babban and Khalujaan to be arrested. Two months later, the uncle-nephew duo get bail and, as they leave the jail, they are given a letter from Begum and Muniya. It is a cheeky letter of thanks and goodbye from the women, informing the men that they have sold the priceless necklace and used the proceeds to buy a house and settle down in a faraway town whose name they withhold. Uncle and nephew are now exactly at the same situation where they were at the start of all these shenanigans—the movie ends with the duo once again surrounded by Mushtaq Bhai and his gang.