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Directed byPuttanna Kanagal
Produced byC. S. Rajah
Written byTriveni
Screenplay byPuttanna Kanagal
Based onSharapanjara
by Triveni
K. S. Ashwath
Music byVijaya Bhaskar
CinematographyD. V. Rajaram
Edited byV. P. Krishna
Distributed byVardhini Art Pictures
Release date
Running time
172 minutes

Sharapanjara (English: Cage of Arrows) is a 1971 Indian Kannada language film directed by Puttanna Kanagal, based on a novel by Triveni of the same name, and starring Kalpana and Gangadhar in lead roles. This film is considered one of the best Kannada movies ever made.[citation needed]

The film won the award for Best Feature Film in Kannada at the 20th National Film Awards in 1972.[1] It also won three awards at the 1970-71 Karnataka State Film Awards including the award for First Best Film.

The film was later remade in Telugu as Krishnaveni (1974) starring Vanisri.[2]


The film revolves around the issues of a woman's chastity, the acceptance of mentally ill by society and unfaithful spouses. The story starts with the chance meeting of the heroine Kaveri (Kalpana) and the hero Sathish (Gangadhar). Sathish falls in love with Kaveri who is educated, sophisticated, beautiful and hails from a respectable family. Eventually they get married with the blessings of their parents. They are a picture perfect couple. They build their dream house, they beget a son, buy a car and are generally prosperous. When Kaveri conceives for the second time, the doctor express concern over her weakness. During post partum period, she remembers the incident in her past wherein she is forced into incestuous pre-marital sex by her cousin and loses her mental balance. During this delirium she reveals this to her husband. She is then admitted to a mental hospital. After recovery, she is discharged from the hospital. The doctors inform Sathish of Kaveri's delicate state of mind and that she needs to be loved and cared for. However, Sathish still affected by the thought of his wife's pre-marital relationship ignores her. Kaveri discovered that she will have to face scorn from her family, neighbours and her husband. The final blow comes when Kaveri discovers that Sathish is having an extra-marital relationship with a female colleague, who used to pursue him before and who Sathish used to make fun of. Unable to bear it, she ultimately goes insane and is admitted to the same mental hospital. Kalpana's performance as a traumatic woman was widely acclaimed by critics.

Though Kaveri loves her husband, he refuses her because of her chastity though she did not willfully engage in pre-marital sex. Instead he takes it as an alibi to be unfaithful to her. The other issue is that of the social acceptability of mentally ill people. The general treatment Kaveri receives from her servants, her cook, her family members and neighbors. The society is absolutely callous and lacks the sensitivity that is so much needed by people like Kaveri.



The soundtrack composed by Vijaya Bhaskar was well received by the audience. Songs like Sandesha Megha Sandesha and Uttara Dhruvadim Dakshina Dhruvaku are still popular.

Title Singers Lyrics
"Bandhana Sharapanjaradali Bandhana" Devadas Vijaya Narasimha
"Bandhana Sharapanjaradali Bandhana" P. Susheela Vijaya Narasimha
"Biligiri Rangayya Neene Helayya" P. Susheela Kanagal Prabhakara Sastry
"Hadinaalku Varsha Vanavasadindha" P. Susheela Vijaya Narasimha
"Kodagina Kaaveri" P. Susheela, P. B. Sreenivas Kanagal Prabhakara Sastry
"Sandesha Megha Sandesha" P. Susheela Vijaya Narasimha
"Uttara Dhruvadim Dakshina Dhruvaku" P. Susheela, P. B. Sreenivas D. R. Bendre


The film was a big hit and ran for one year in Karnataka in about three theatres. The character Kaveri portrayed by Kalpana is one of the strongest and widely acclaimed characters in Kannada cinema. The movie gave impetus to Kalpana's career.


This film screened at IFFI 1992 Kannada cinema Retrospect.


  1. ^ "20th National Film Awards (1972)" (PDF). International Film Festival of India. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 8 March 2014.
  2. ^ "Krishnaveni (1974)".

External links[edit]