Indian Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan on the January 2011 cover of Elle India and the brunette beauty at the "Big Star Entertainment Awards" ceremony in Mumbai on December 21, 2010. Photos: Elle Magazine | STRDEL/AFP/Getty Images

Once again Elle magazine is under fire for allegedly lightening the skin of one of its cover girls – and this time the airbrushing victim may not go down without a legal fight.

Last week Internet chatter over an Elle India cover featuring actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan peaked with fans and media critics alike in an uproar over how much lighter the beauty's skin appeared on the front of the fashion tome. Now, The Times of India is reporting that sources close to Bachchan say she is considering a lawsuit against the magazine if she finds that, after further investigation, they did in fact digitally lighten her skin tone.

When comparing the cover in question with candid photos of the former pageant queen, the difference in skin tone is apparent.

The Times of India reports that their anonymous source claims Bachchan's "first reaction was disbelief" when confronted with her image on Elle India.

This is the second racial debacle surrounding one of the many international editions of Elle. The American version was criticized for its October 2010 issue which featured actress Gabourey Sidibeon one of its four celebrity covers with noticeably lighter skin than her natural complexion.

In response to that incident, Elle stated "nothing out of the ordinary" was done. Elle India has yet to comment on Bachchan's latest cover.

Curious as to who is 2010's best-selling magazine cover girl? The answer might surprise you.