It takes a debilitating disease like cancer to reunite brother (Raj Babbar) and sister (Nutan).




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Credited cast:
Suman Sharma
Arun Sharma
Aarti A. Sharma
Dr. Ravi Kaul
Neeta Mehta ...
Gajanan Jagirdar ...
Professor Sharma
Ranvir aka 'Ronny'
Urmila Bhatt ...
Mrs. Kaul
Aarti's dad
Sudha Chopra ...
Brahm Bhardwaj ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Raju Shrestha ...
Young Arun Sharma


When Suman's parents pass away, Professor Sharma decides to adopt her and includes her in his family of his wife and two sons, Bunty and Arun. His wife subsequently passes away, and Suman takes it upon herself to look after the three males. Suman is in love with Ravi Kaul, both want to get married, and with approval of Ravi's mom and Prof. Sharma, a wedding date is set. However, on that very day Bunty gets killed in an accident and the wedding is canceled. Ravi travels to U.S.A. on a research scholarship, hoping to get married on his return. Then Arun gets into trouble with a local merchant who accuses him of breaking and entering his shop, but before the Police could be notified, Suman compensates the merchant with the conditional help of Ravi's mom, and the Sharmas re-locate to Bombay. Subsequently, the Professor passes away, and Suman brings up Arun with the help of a taxi-driver, Hanibhai. Arun has now grown up, is now a Chief Engineer in Bhatnagar Constructions, he meets with, ... Written by rAjOo (

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Plot Keywords:

family relationships | See All (1) »


Drama | Musical





Release Date:

1983 (India)  »

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Paper can create a relation but cannot end it
17 September 2013 | by (India) – See all my reviews

A piece of paper ,i.e., a legal document can very well create a relationship. In civil marriage, the marriage certificate creates the relationship of husband and wife. However once a relationship comes into existence, it cannot be ended abruptly just by another piece of paper. A divorce decree may end the legal bond but can it end the emotional bond shared by the twosome for a certain period of time ? Can it erase the memories (sweet or bitter) of that association from their hearts. That's why so many case of remarriage of an erstwhile divorced couple are seen in today's time.

Similarly, an adoption document creates a relationship between the adopted child and his / her fostering parents as well as their natural children, if any. The adopted child automatically becomes the brother / sister of the naturally born children of the adopting parents. This relationship is created by a piece of paper which is the adoption document. However can another piece of paper end such a relationship ? This is the question raised and aptly answered in a Hindi movie which is Rishta Kaagaz Ka (1983).

Rishta Kaagaz Ka (relation of paper) is the story of girl - Suman (Nutan) who is adopted by Professor Sharma (Gajaanan Jaagirdaar) when her natural parents are no more. Mr. Sharma is already having two sons in his family but he is very happy to have a daughter also now in the form of Suman. Suman falls in love with Dr. Ravi Kaul (Suresh Oberai) and they decide to get married. However destiny has other plans. One of Suman's brothers - Bunty dies in an accident on the wedding day itself. Considering the fact that after the demise of her adopting parents, she only has to take care of their other son (Master Raju), Suman decides not to marry and foster her younger brother in a motherly way performing the responsibilities which were to be performed by the parents had they been alive.

Her younger brother grows up in the form of Arun (Raj Babbar) and falls in love with Aarti (Rati Agnihotri). Suman happily arranges the marriage of her younger brother with the love of his life who happens to be the daughter of a rich family. She does not find it get going comfortably with her elder sister-in-law after marriage and feeling restless under the so-called 'rule' of Suman in the house, ensures that Arun and herself live separately from Suman. Besides, since Suman is still in touch with Dr. Ravi Kaul (after all, he is her beau and he has also opted bachelorhood for the sake of her love), Arun happens to doubt the 'character' of his elder sister and a kind of hatred emerges in his heart for her. However after certain twists in the tale, he realizes his mistake and returns to his sister only when it's too late.

The title of this movie is apt because in his ending moments, Suman underscores this fact before Arun that their relationship was created through a piece of paper (that is, her adoption document) but once developed, the relationship cannot remain limited to that paper (or any other paper) and therefore, it cannot be ignored or abolished as such. The movie ends in a touching manner with these words of Suman leaving a long lasting mark on the hearts of the viewers.

The story of this movie may remind of Rajshri's classic movie Tapasya (1976). However after watching it, you may find that it's different in treatment. Unlike Tapasya, it ends on a tragic note and appeals more. On the occasion of the Independence Day (of India), I had reviewed an old black and white movie - Phool Bane Angaare (1963) whose story also follows a similar path. In that movie, it's the brother who dies in the end whereas in Rishta Kaagaz Ka, the sister dies in the end. However, the most significant thing is that even after the death of the individual, the relationship that had come into existence in his (or her) life continues. Even death cannot end such affection-filled sincere relationships. They continue to live in the memories of the survivors.

Despite being a sentiments-soaked movie, Rishta Kaagaz Ka is not devoid of entertainment. It has romance and songs plus a good dose of comedy also. Seasoned comedian Johnny Walker proves in this movie that despite his old age, he was unsurpassable in the field of comedy. He renders ample number of relief moments in this serious drama.

Technically, this movie of middle class people is up to the mark. In addition to the script-writer and the director, the editor has also done his part well, cutting and joining certain shots very proficiently to create an extra-ordinary impact. Cinematographer and art-director have also done their respective jobs well.

Rajesh Roshan has composed good music with the lyrics of Majrooh Sultaanpuri. Allah Teri Shaan, Sajna Sun Sun Meri Chaabi Ki Chhun, Chhota Sa Bhaiya Hamaara, Kya Ho Gaya Mujhe etc. may not be chartbusters of their time but they all are quite good to listen and also to watch.

Raj Babbar and Rati Agnihotri have done well as the young romantic pair. However they do not come anywhere near to the seasoned senior actors - Nutan and Suresh Oberai who have delivered very impressive performances. All others are well in place.

Rishta Kaagaz Ka is an underrated movie which did not do well on the box office and now it can be considered a movie which is long forgotten despite its good quality. Just watch it and then you will also vouch for its quality like me. I wholeheartedly recommend it to all those who like relationships-based sentimental dramas.

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