Gupt: The Hidden Truth

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Gupt: The Hidden Truth
Directed by Rajiv Rai
Produced by
Screenplay by
  • Rajiv Rai
  • Shabbir Boxwala
Story by Rajiv Rai
Music by Viju Shah
Cinematography Ashok Mehta
Edited by Rajiv Rai
Distributed by Trimurti Films
Release date
  • 4 July 1997 (1997-07-04)
Running time
174 minutes
Country India
Language Hindi
Box office 250 million (US$3.7 million)[1]

Gupt: The Hidden Truth (English: Secret), commonly known as Gupt, is a 1997 Bollywood suspense thriller film, directed by Rajiv Rai. It stars Bobby Deol, Manisha Koirala and Kajol in lead roles, whilst Paresh Rawal, Om Puri and Raj Babbar appear in supporting roles. The film's soundtrack was composed by Viju Shah, while the lyrics were penned by Anand Bakshi.

Upon release, Gupt was a commercial success, with its storyline and soundtrack earning critical praise. It grossed 250 million (US$3.7 million) at the domestic box office.[1]


Governor Jaisingh Sinha (Raj Babbar) is a popular and prominent political figure of the state, besides being well known as an upright person. One day, Gov. Sinha presides over a meeting on the issue of "Open Door Policy", a scheme which will pave the way for foreign companies to operate in India, by implementing usage of computer, industrial machinery etc. The meeting is attended by influential industrialist Meghnad Chaudhry (Dalip Tahil), Union leader Vilas Rao (Sharat Saxena) and minister Mantriji (Prem Chopra), among others. While Chaudhry is in favour of the policy because it would generate foreign investment in India, Vilas Rao strongly opposes the policy which would bring with it the unemployment of a large number of workers because of the utilization of computers and industrial machinery. The difference of opinion of Chaudhry and Vilas Rao leads to a heated argument between the two for which Gov. Sinha terminates the meeting without arriving at any decision on the policy.

Gov. Sinha is the step-father of a young man named Sahil Sinha (Bobby Deol) whose mother Sharda (Priya Tendulkar) has been taken responsibility of by Gov. Sinha after the demise of Sharda's former husband. The song "Duniya Haseenon Ka Mela", performed by Sahil at a nightclub suggests him to be an unattached and easy-going man. Gov. Sinha has a younger son by the name Harsh Sinha. Sahil retains kind of hatred for Gov. Sinha, although the four live under the same roof. Ishwar Dewan (Paresh Rawal) is the Personal Secretary to Gov. Sinha, whose daughter Isha (Kajol) is Sahil's beloved. As a matter of fact, Sahil and Isha are childhood friends who have been parted from each other years ago, but have reunited now as adults. On the other hand, Sheetal (Manisha Koirala), the daughter of Chaudhry, has a secret but fervent love for Sahil.

One evening, Gov. Sinha organizes Sahil's birthday party on which he announces Sahil's engagement with Sheetal. This stupefies and enrages Sahil who is in love with Isha only. Verbal altercation takes place between Sahil and Gov. Sinha. At one point, a furious Sahil picks up a knife and is about to stab Gov. Sinha in front of all the guests, only to be stopped by Sharda. The next day, Sahil gets heavily drunk at the house of Dr Gandhi (Kulbhushan Kharbanda), Gov. Sinha's family doctor, who advises Sahil to accept Sheetal as his wife on the grounds that Sahil will lead a happier life with Sheetal. A pie-eyed Sahil returns home and finds to his shock and horror that someone has stabbed Gov. Sinha with a knife. Before Gov. Sinha utters the name of the murderer to Sahil, the former dies, while Sharda arrives and finds Sahil near his dead step-father holding a knife smeared with blood. Thus, to all appearances, it seems that Sahil has killed Gov. Sinha for which Sahil is summoned to court where many of his acquaintances including Chaudhry, Vilas Rao, Mantriji, lawyer Thanawala (Raza Murad) and Sharda testify against him. Sahil is sentenced 14 years of imprisonment by the court for the crime of killing Gov. Sinha. Just before Sahil is transported to Central Jail by the police, he stealthily hands over an unidentified locket to Sheetal, which he found at the crime scene where Gov. Sinha was murdered, with the conjecture that this locket belongs to the murderer who dropped it at the crime scene.

In Central Jail, Sahil relates his account of false implication of killing his step-father to an old prisoner who, upon hearing Sahil's story, believes him to be innocent. The prisoner says to Sahil that in the past 11 years, he has observed only a single insufficiency of this jail - all the dirty water and waste materials of the jail are removed to a common gutter pipe which extends out of the jail to the sea. This gutter pipe can be accessed from a flush toilet located at a chamber of the jail which is the oldest, a dark and a secret part of the jail. If Sahil manages to reach that chamber, he will be able to make the exit point above the sea from where he can set sail away with a boat. In order to accomplish this escape plan, Sahil beats up two unruly prisoners of the jail, following which the jailor (Tej Sapru) confines Sahil and the two prisoners in the aforesaid chamber. The three succeed in discovering the secret path down the flush toilet to the gutter pipe, and after a combat with the jailor and a few policemen, Sahil and the two prisoners escape the jail by sea, with boat arranged by Sheetal, as previously planned.

Sahil's escape from jail creates great disquiet in the police department and Commissioner Patwardhan (Anjan Srivastav) assigns an unbending and resolute police officer Udham Singh (Om Puri) to handle the case of Sahil's apprehension. Udham Singh and two constables Neelkanth (Sadashiv Amrapurkar) and Pandu (Ashok Saraf) start the search for Sahil on the loose. Sahil secretly meets Isha at the latter's home from where he rings up Dr Gandhi to seek a resolution of this knotty situation. Dr Gandhi says that he too needs to tell him something secret and asks him to meet him at his home at about 10:30 PM. With the title track "Gupt Gupt Who Kya Hai" playing in the background, that night, Sahil slips into Dr Gandhi’s residence where Dr Gandhi is shown to be watching TV, but as Sahil draws near him, he finds to his shock and horror that somebody has stabbed Dr Gandhi to death. The viewers are shown only the feet of this unknown murderer who secretly slopes off from the crime scene, while Dr Gandhi’s servant finds Sahil near the dead doctor and shrieks. Sahil instantly runs away. Dr Gandhi’s servant lodges an F.I.R. against Sahil.

The murder of Dr Gandhi creates further tension in the police department and among Sahil’s acquaintances, with everyone believing Sahil to be the murderer. Udham Singh strengthens the search operation of Sahil and interrogates Sheetal with whom Sahil maintains a well-disposed relationship. After being persistently questioned by Udham Singh about Sahil, Sheetal confesses to have spent the previous night with Sahil and also helped him escape Central Jail, ironically to show her extreme love for Sahil. Udham Singh does not arrest Sheetal for these wrongdoings, but advises her father Chaudhry humorously to get his insane daughter immediately admitted into India’s biggest mental asylum situated in Agra.

Sahil, knowing that he has been deceitfully accused of killing Gov. Sinha and Dr Gandhi, decides to find the real murderer by hook or by crook. With the knowledge that the murder of a leading person like Gov. Sinha can be fruitful to many of his acquaintances, Sahil begins his aggressive interrogation. He suspects Thanawala of being Gov. Sinha’s and Dr Gandhi’s murderer, because Thanawala had every likelihood of obtaining Gov. Sinha’s property upon his death, provided Sahil is got rid of. He questions Thanawala about this who ends up in hospital sustaining injuries after Sahil beats him up and throws him down two storeys. However, Sahil is convinced that Thanawala is not the murderer. Meanwhile, Chaudhry and his brother declare a prize to anybody who informs them about Sahil’s whereabouts. Sahil now finds reasons to suspect Chaudhry or his brother to be the murderer because Chaudhry needed some essential signatures of Gov. Sinha on some papers which he could not obtain. He accosts Chaudhry at the latter’s shipyard where Chaudhry swears in the name of his daughter of not being the murderer, although he has done many frauds in business. At the same time, Chaudhry’s brother arrives to hand over Sahil to the police but gets badly beaten by Sahil instead. The next target of Sahil is Vilas Rao, the corrupt Union leader, who, after being severely beaten by Sahil, says that Gov. Sinha’s murder is a political assassination committed by Mantriji. Sahil and Sheetal trick Mantriji into attending a ceremony without his security guards where just after the presentation of the song "Yeh Pyaar Kya Hai Kisi Ne Na Jaana" by Sahil, Isha and Sheetal, Sahil collars Mantriji and seizes him away defying even the warning at gunpoint by Udham Singh. Udham Singh now realizes that Sahil is not the real murderer.

Udham Singh finds that the two murders have been committed with two knives of exactly the same construction and shape, typically of Kashmiri knives, that could belong to a set. After some investigstions, Udham Singh finds the set of knives at Ishwar Dewan’s house and arrests Dewan after he confesses of killing Gov. Sinha and Dr Gandhi. Dewan divulges to have murdered Gov. Sinha because even after years of his fidelity to Gov. Sinha as his PS, he did not accept Isha as his daughter-in-law. Dewan killed Dr Gandhi who was supposed to tell Sahil something secret. On the other hand, Sahil beats up Mantriji who is in his captive, to elicit the confession from him of being the murderer. Sheetal arrives and says that the murderer, none other than Ishwar Dewan, has been arrested, making Sahil release Mantriji. But, neither the real murderer is found yet, nor the story ends here.

At his house, Udham Singh along with Neelkanth and Pandu celebrates the successful conclusion of this baffling case with wine. Sahil’s brother Harsh is shown playing with the unidentified locket which Sahil had found at the former crime scene. He is shocked to find out the picture of Isha inside the locket. He knows that this is all the work of Isha. He goes to visit Ishwar who reveals that Isha had committed the crimes but he doesn't want Isha to be put in jail. Therefore, he himself takes the blame. Now Isha reaches Sheetal's place and attacks her. After a long chase Sahil arrives and saves Sheetal. Enraged by the view of Sahil and Sheetal embracing each other she once more attacks Sheetal but Udham Singh arrives and shoots her.Isha embraces Sahil and Sahil asks her why she did all this as he was hers; but her reply was she didn't have faith in her destiny. They embrace a last time and Isha finally dies in Sahil's arms.



Most of director Rajiv Rai's (and producer Gulshan Rai's) films are of action-thriller genre that recount the activities of some baddies who carry out tasks detrimental to the society or the country, and to fight whom a righteous person has to adopt the path of crime themself. An intrinsic factor that betokens most of Rai's action-thriller films is the element of uncertainty; everything remains unfathomable, that could be disclosed only at the last minute. The story of the horror-thriller film Gupt revolves around the murder of a political chief and the reason of this murder by an unknown killer remains utterly mysterious. Initially, the murder seems to be familial, i.e., committed by a near and dear one, while later it seems to be a political murder accomplished by a probable enemy of the victim. Some well known villains of Bollywood have played major roles in the film, namely, Prem Chopra, Paresh Rawal, Raza Murad, Harish Patel, Tej Sapru, Sharat Saxena, Dalip Tahil, Vishwajeet Pradhan and Mukesh Rishi. The plot of the film is fashioned in a way that makes the viewers suspect that everyone has an axe to grind in the murder. At the end, the revelation of the killer horrifies the viewers.[2][3]


The film's soundtrack composed by Viju Shah won the Filmfare Best Background Score award in 1998.[4] The song "Gupt" was copied from a song, 'Deep Forest' by a French band of the same name.

Track list[5]

# Title Singer(s) Length
1 "Yeh Pyasi Jawani" Alka Yagnik 06:02
2 "Mushkil Bada Yeh Pyaar Hai" Alka Yagnik, Udit Narayan 05:53
3 "Gupt Gupt" Kavita Krishnamurthy, Hema Sardesai, Chetan 02:55
4 "Gupt Gupt" (extended) Kavita Krishnamurthy, Hema Sardesai, Chetan 04:55
5 "Mere Khwabon Mein Tu" Kumar Sanu, Alka Yagnik 05:33
6 "Duniya Haseeno Ka Mela" Udit Narayan, Sunita Rao 06:30
7 "Yeh Pyaar Kya Hai" Kumar Sanu, Alka Yagnik, Kavita Krishnamurthy 05:13
8 "Mere Sanam" Udit Narayan, Sadhana Sargam 05:48
9 "Gupt Gupt" (instrumental) 02:22

Critical reception[edit]

Gupt received positive reviews from critics. gave it a 7.5/10 rating and wrote, "It is a slickly made movie with stylish cinematography, beautiful locales, and pretty good performances. It falls in the genre of thriller movies and fares much better than any of its sorry predecessors did. The director, Rajiv Rai is not over-awed by the subject and so does not make a hosh-posh out of the whole thing."[6] Mohammad Ali Ikram of Planet Bollywood praised the suspense and music.[7]

Box office[edit]

Gupt grossed 250 million (US$3.7 million) at the domestic box office. Box Office India declared it a "Hit".[1]

Awards and recognition[edit]

1997 was one of the most successful years for Bollywood with hits like Border, Judwaa, Dil to Pagal Hai, Pardes, Yes Boss, Virasat, Ziddi, Ishq and Gupt: The Hidden Truth. Gupt won three Filmfare Awards and was nominated in five other categories. It was also the fourth largest blockbuster of the year after Border, Dil To Pagal Hai and Pardes. Kajol was the first woman in Filmfare Award history to receive the Best Villain award.

1998 Filmfare awards[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Box office". Retrieved 11 February 2013. 
  2. ^ "Gupt Movie Review". Retrieved 7 January 2016. 
  3. ^ "Gupt (1997) at". Retrieved 7 January 2016. 
  4. ^ "Gupt Music Review". Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  5. ^ "Gupt-The Hidden Truth". Saavn. Retrieved 27 April 2016. 
  6. ^ "Review (". Retrieved 11 February 2013. 
  7. ^ "review (Planet Bollywood)". Retrieved 11 February 2013. 

External links[edit]