‘Taarak Mehta...’ actor wins lawsuit against show’s maker

The actor-poet will be paid a sum of about $127,000 as part of the settlement.

Actor and poet Shailesh Lodha who played the eponymous role on Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah, the superhit and longest-running Indian television sitcom until 2022 has emerged victorious in the lawsuit he filed against the show’s producer Asit Modi.

L​odha had been a part of the now 15-year-old show since it launched in 2008 and quit after an apparent fallout with the producer. “This fight was never about the money. It was about seeking justice and self-respect. I feel like I have won a battle and I’m happy that the truth has prevailed,” Lodha was quoted as saying after winning the suit in an ETimes report.

L​odha reportedly sued the producer due to non-payment of professional dues. As part of the settlement, the actor will be paid a sum of about US $127,000 (INR 10,500,000) by Modi via demand draft, the ETimes report said, highlighting that the suit was settled by consent from counsels of both parties.

"Those who earn popularity due to the work of an artist cannot be bigger than the artist. Any publisher in the world cannot be bigger than the writer. Any producer cannot be bigger than the actor. He is a businessman. If any businessman tries to overpower the actor or poet in me, I will strongly condemn it,” Lodha said at an event, as per a report.

T​MKOC fans were shocked upon Lodha’s exit from the show in April 2022 after about 14 long years. The actor had maintained silence over what transpired between him and Modi, despite speculations of a fallout in the media, until March 2023, when he finally spoke about it. ​