Orphaned Raju, in the company of four elephants, has to perform with them at street corners, in order to keep alive. Slowly he amasses a fortune, and is able to build his own private zoo, housing tigers, lions, bears, and of course the four elephants. He treats all the animals as his friends. He meets with Tanu, and both fall in love. Tanu's dad, Ratanlal, is opposed to this alliance, but subsequently relents, and permits the young couple to get married. Tanu is unhappy with the amount of time Raju spends with his animal friends, and this causes some bitterness between them. Things do not improve when a child is born, as Tanu fears that one day the child will be harmed by one of the animals, and hence Raju is told to make a choice between his animal friends or his wife and son.
Years after the movie's release, lead actress Tanuja took her daughter Kajol to the circus. An elephant grabbed her pallu and would not let go of it. She was informed that the elephant was one the elephants used for her film, and had recognized her after all those years.
Hollywood star Lucy Liu said that this was her favorite movie from her childhood and she would always sing the song "Chal Chal Chal Mere Haathi".
The film marked the first collaboration of the celebrated writing duo Salim-Javed.
This was the highest grossing Indian film of the year 1971.
Haathi Mere Saathi 1971
05 May 1971 ● Hindi ● 2 hrs 52 mins
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