Alia Bhatt‘s Gangubai Kathiawadi is a biopic on the famous Madam of Kamathipura, Gangubai Kothewali, who ran a brothel and worked for the rights of sex workers. It is said that her influence went beyond underworld dons and politicians.
In a scene from the film, Gangubai meets then Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru (played by Rahul Vohra) to discuss the plight of sex workers. But did you know that this scene is actually inspired from the real-life meeting between Gangubai and Pandit Nehru?
According to Hussain Zaidi’s 2011 book, Mafia Queens of Mumbai, it was Gangubai’s speech at a women empowerment meeting where she talked about the need for prostitution belts in cities, that earned her a meeting with the then-PM of India.
According to reports, Nehru was greatly impressed by Gangubai’s vigour to improve the living conditions of prostitutes. During their private meeting, Nehru asked her why did she choose this field of work when she could have had a different life with a husband.
To which, Gangubai replied, “Would you marry me?” While Nehru was left speechless, Gangubai continued, “It’s very easy to preach but tough to practice.”
While there is no real-life account of Pandit Nehru giving a flower to Gangubai, nevertheless the film did a great job at recreating the real life incident.