Gunvantrao Kagalkar aka 'Guna' (Atul Kulkarni), a poor village labourer, nurtures an obsession for Tamasha - a popular theatrical folk art form of Maharashtra. Unforeseen circumstances lead him to lose his job as labourer and lands him in situation where he sets up a theatre company along with his friend and mentor Pandba (Kishor Kadam). Guna is convinced that his troupe cannot take off unless it has a female dancer. After painstaking search, Pandoba finds Naina (Sonalee Kulkarni), the daughter of his former lover Yamunabai (Priya Berde), who is willing to dance for the company on the condition that it has a "Nachya", a "pansy" character, a man who acts in an effeminate manner. As no one is willing to take up the role, due to the eunuch taboo, Guna takes it upon himself to play the character. The strongly built Guna takes up the challenge of doing the role due to his passion for the art.
Despite lack of support from his family, Guna works hard to get the role right, and his play becomes successful in a very short while. However, due to their success, the play gets entangled in the power struggle between two local politicians who wish to use its success for political mileage. Meanwhile, Guna's father dies in his village, and his wife and son are subject to harassment from other villagers. Rival political gangs attack Guna's play and torch his theater. Guna is accused of being a eunuch and gang-raped. However, despite being rejected by his family and discouraged by his friends, Guna continues with his stage career, where he is joined only by Naina. It is implied that Guna and Naina marry, and that their play gathers national and international fame. The film ends with an aged Guna, now addressed as Gunvantrao Kagalkar wins the lifetime achievement award at a major awards ceremony.
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