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Bombay high court grants Gaurang Doshi the right to make Aankhen sequel

The dispute over the rights to the sequel to the 2002 hit Aankhen has been going on since 2016.

Our Correspondent

The Bombay high court has given a verdict that the right to make a sequel to the 2002 Hindi movie Aankhen remain with producer Gaurang Doshi.

The order came after Rajtaru Studios withdrew its plea staking claim to the rights to make Aankhen Returns, as per an official statement by Doshi and his lawyer. 

Reacting to the verdict, Doshi said in the statement, “I’m very grateful to the Bombay high court for their decision. I had complete belief in the system and the court's ruling is highly reassuring for people like me that justice is delivered to those in the right.”

Doshi has inserted a public notice about the order through his lawyer in a trade magazine. An excerpt from the notice says, “It also means that, as on today, after the termination of the ‘Agreement’ by my client, the title and rights in the movie ‘Aankhen’ or its sequel/s continue to vest in my client, unless a legal determination takes place otherwise.” 

It all started in August 2016 when Tarun Agarwal of Rajtaru Studios objected to Doshi’s plan to make a sequel to Aankhen and moved the court. Doshi had announced the sequel at a grand event where the film’s lead stars Amitabh Bachchan, Arshad Warsi and Regina Cassandra were present along with new director Anees Bazmee. 

But all work on the film stopped because of the legal proceedings. Another controversy that had erupted at the time was that actress Ileana D’Cruz’s name was announced as a member of the cast. However, the actress denied having signed on for the film.

Last year, Doshi was sentenced to six months' imprisonment for contempt of court as he was unable to repay Rs1.25 crore to Scorg International Consulting Private Limited who had paid him Rs1 crore to make Aankhen Returns. Doshi was cleared of the contempt charges in July this year, following which he had announced plans to produce web-series.

Doshi suffered another setback last year when actress Flora Saini accused him of harassment when the #MeToo movement was on.