1. Shivani (MADHURI DIXIT), an airline stewardess, is supposed to go to her friend Kavita's birthday party. First, however, she must check to see how her sister's health is. At home, Shivani's sister wants to use the money she makes selling plants to buy herself medicine, but her husband takes it to gamble with. He says once he wins the jackpot, he'll pay for her operation. This outrages Shivani, but he refuses to be shamed, and demands the 2000 Rs. she pays each month in rent. He wheedles extra out of her for her sister's medicine.

  2. At Kavita's birthday party, Shivani attracts the interest of a wealthy businessman, Vijay Agnihotri (SHAHRUKH KHAN). She isn't interested, but he doesn't accept it well.

  3. Vijay is visited by a policeman, Arjun Singh. Seems the fire he lit in his car spread to three nearby shops, and the owners want to lodge complaints. To his mother's distaste, Vijay bribes the policeman and gives him pay-off money for the shopkeepers.

  4. Vijay, looking for a model to represent his company, spots Shivani on an Air India ad. He goes to her house to offer her the job, but she turns him down.

  5. Vijay's mom sends him on an important business trip to London, but at the airport, he sees Shivani and impulsively buys a roundtrip ticket for her flight to Dubai. On board, he makes himself a severe nuisance, requesting a drink "more intoxicating than your eyes, tarter than your tongue, and as salty as you." Shivani complies, and he enjoys it so much that, to her disbelief, he asks for another (SONG: BADI MUSHKIL HAI).

  6. Vijay tells his mom he's found her future daughter-in-law. Thrilled, she goes with him to propose a match. They arrive at Shivani's house in the middle of her wedding.

  7. At the airport on the way to London, Vijay runs into Shivani's brother-in-law and learns from him that Shivani's husband has received a four year posting in New York.

  8. Four years later: Vijay's mom worries about how angry at life Vijay has become. He's always out hunting. She hopes marriage will settle him. Later, she asks him why he feels the need to kill innocent animals. "I like it, Mom. It gives me a lot of pleasure." She tells him to stay in tonight, because Mr. Sharma and his daughter are coming by. Vijay protests that he must go to the police commissioner's party. She relents, but tells him to return home early to meet with the Sharmas, because they are leaving tomorrow for America.

  9. At the police commissioner's party, Vijay has an unexpected reunion (SONG: CHANE KE KHET MEIN). He returns home disgusted with the idea of any other woman, and rudely demands of Seema Sharma that she sing and dance for him. He tells his mother she can't understand what he's going through.

  10. Shivani is planning a birthday party for her daughter, Pinky. To her husband Ashok, she defends her decision to quit the Air India job but start working at the hospital. With everyone out of the house — Pinky at school and Ashok at work — she gets lonely. Besides, the disabled people she works with have made great progress under her care, responding with amazing speed to the love and attention she gives them. She demonstrates; meanwhile, Vijay bribes her brother-in-law for her address.

  11. As Vijay watches, Shivani is mugged and her mangalsutra [specific type of necklace worn only by married Hindu women] is stolen.

  12. Vijay shows up at Pinky's birthday party to offer Vijay a job as general manager of the new airline Vijay is starting. Shivani is against it, but the offer is hard to turn down. Learning that they're going on holiday to Mauritius, Vijay tells Ashok he'll fax the agreement to him at the resort.

  13. Before the couple leaves for their holiday, Vijay and Inspector Arjun Singh intercept Shivani with the good news that they've found her mugger. She accepts her mangalsutra, but is shocked by Vijay's proposition that she dole out a little personal punishment to the thief with the club he offers her. When she declines the opportunity, protesting that such things should be left to the police, Vijay decides to do it himself.

  14. Mauritius. Shivani, who is keeping a fast for her husband until moonrise, is hungry and irritable that the moon hasn't yet come out. Her husband teases her about keeping the fast even when they're not in India, then goes inside to make a phone call. The moon comes out, and Shivani excitedly calls him, saying she wants him to be the next thing she looks at after seeing the moon. She turns — and gets an unpleasant surprise. Vijay has come to get Ashok to sign the papers in person, since, as he explains to Ashok, time is of the essence. Ashok is thrilled beyond his wildest dreams when Vijay offers him a monthly salary of 1 lakh (100,000 Rs.), but later Shivani tells her husband that she's sure he's being conned somehow, and if he were smart he'd rip up that contract and throw it away. When Vijay intercepts her on her walk, she tells him she's not happy about it. "What's your problem with me? Tell me and I'll fix it," he assures her. "There's no cure for the problem," she parries. "There's no rehabilitation center for fools, and you are a fool." Vijay assures her that he's also extremely stubborn and there's no cure for that either. When he makes a crack about her skill at darts, she challenges him to do any better. "A bet?" he asks. "Yes. You'll lose," she predicts. Vijay: "I never lose, Shivani. Never."

  15. First of several annoying comic interludes with "hijras," or modern eunuchs who make their living by attending weddings and births and dancing for the household (on threat of cursing it if money isn't given).

  16. Shivani's brother-in-law warns Ashok that a lock is hardly effective in Bombay; he offers to housesit. Ashok turns down the offer and takes him to the new house, where Shivani's sister congratulates him about becoming a father again. An overjoyed Ashok is teasing his wife when Vijay comes by to show them the new pamphelet for the airline company. Both are shocked to see Shivani on the cover, but Shivani loses her head and tells Vijay to get out of their house. He slinks off. Ashok is appalled by her bad manners; she tells him he's got to quit the job. "What would you do with all this money anyway?" Ashok: "It's for you, and Pinky, and our unborn child!" Shivani spits, "You want more money, do you? So quit and I'll go to work!" Ashok hits her, and she announces that she's leaving. "If you leave, don't come back!" he yells after her as she goes. Vijay appears: "You hit Shivani?" Ashok is angry: "This is a private matter. Go away!" All Vijay can do is repeat himself — "You hit Shivani?" — as he pummels Ashok into a pulp.

  17. The police tell Shivani that since Ashok had no enemies, it seems the motive for the attack was robbery, and Ashok probably just intercepted the thief before he could steal anything. Ashok is touch and go, requiring a steady oxygen supply to keep him breathing, so Shivani goes to keep vigil at his bedside. When Vijay shows up, she tells him to get out. "I've brought something for you, Shivani — divorce papers. I've spoken with a lawyer — sign them, and marry me." Shivani asks, "Are you crazy?" "Yes," Vijay replies, "I am; your love drove me crazy... He raised his hand against you. Marry me." Shivani is outraged, launching into a speech about the sacredness of marriage vows and sindoor (vermilion, which married women wear in their parts). "No one can break the bond of husband and wife. God won't pardon you for this; aren't you ashamed to talk to a wife like this? I'm a wife, a wife!" Vijay unplugs Ashok's oxygen and says: "Now?"

  18. Policemen come to Vijay's house to tell him that Ashok is dead and his wife says Vijay did it. Vijay is convincingly outraged: "The biggest loss is mine! My airline is about to open and my general manager, who I'm completely dependent on, is dead!" A policeman insists that Shivani said Vijay was there at Ashok's bedside last night at eleven PM. Vijay gives his alibi: he was with Inspector Arjun Singh.

  19. Shivani's panicked outrage doesn't sway the police officers, who won't take her word over that of one of their own. Arjun Singh himself speculates to his boss that she's doing this to get money out of Vijay. Later, Arjun counsels Vijay to forget Shivani. Vijay: "Never! Never say this again to me!" Arjun Singh: "She'll never be yours." Vijay: You know, when I was a kid there was a girl in my class with a glass doll. I wanted that doll, and kept asking and asking for it, but she refused to give it to me. So you know what I did?" He demonstrates.

  20. Shivani finds Vijay telling her daughter, Pinky, to call him daddy. She sweeps her daughter out and then returns to confront him: "Murder! How dare you come here! Get out!" Vijay: "Don't be mad, I've brought you something." He holds up a tin of sindoor, adding, "Fill your part." She refuses. He persists: "I can't bear to see you in this widow's guise. Marry me. I love you so much." Shivani: "This isn't love, it's lust!" Vijay: "No, it's true love, don't insult it like that." Shivani: "I hate you!" Vijay: "Just say once that you love me." Shivani: "Get out, bastard!" Vijay: "Say it! Say you love me!" He beats her. "Say it once!" He pauses to call the police to tell them to come quick, someone's about to be murdered. And then he frames Shivani for his attempted murder. (INTERMISSION)

  21. At Shivani's trial, Vijay says on the stand that he gave Ashok the job because Shivani begged him to. When asked what his relationship with Shivani was, he says they were having an affair. The day she "tried to kill him," she called him over to beg him to marry her. When he refused, not wanting to marry such an amoral creature, she grew violent. The judge buys it, finding her guilty and sentencing her to three years in prison.

  22. In prison, Shivani bonds with Nisha, another guiltless inmate. Meanwhile, her brother begrudges even the smallest amount of milk to his niece, claiming it's too expensive an indulgence. He rips off Pinky's necklace to pawn for cash to gamble with.

  23. Vijay attends a charity show where a fantasy of Shivani (SONG: MAIN KOHLAPUR SE) moves him to later inform his mother that he wants to marry the performer.

  24. Pinky visits her mother in prison. Her tales of her uncle's abuse move Shivani to helpless rage, but she tries to hide it so she can soothe her daughter.

  25. At Vijay's engagement ceremony, he informs his mother that his fiancee will no longer be known as Roopali, but as Shivani. Meanwhile, the prisoners are paraded out in the dead of night so a wealthy man can have his choice of bedpartners. Shivani's morning sickness saves her; Nisha is taken instead.

  26. Shivani's brother-in-law throws his wife and niece out of the house. Meanwhile, Shivani comforts Nisha, assuring her that things are going to change around here: "I've written the home minister." Vijay comes to visit her; he offers her freedom if she'll just say once that she loves him. Shivani vows that she'll never say it in any of her births. Vijay: "I thought the iron bars would break you, but no, you haven't changed. Know why I came?" Shivani: "You cunning swine are all the same: you want to rub salt in the wound." Vijay: "That's not cunning, it's love. Love of you dragged me here. Remember when I said that what I loved and couldn't have, I destroyed? I've destroyed you. And now I'm marrying, and the girl I'm marrying, I've named after you." Shivani: "That name will become an ulcer and torment you the rest of your life. It will remind you constantly that you wouldn't win Shivani. You lost, Vijay Agnihotri. You lost."

  27. Vijay's rage leads him to a tragic accident on the way home, killing Shivani's sister and child. When she learns of it, she assumes it was on purpose, even though the policemen assure her that Vijay was too badly hurt to have done it deliberately. Shivani's brother-in-law is frantic to find his wife's mangalsutra (very expensive piece!) and takes the earrings off her body to sell. Shivani's mind cracks a little; when they want her to identify her daughter's body, she refuses, saying it's some other child, there's been a mistake, her daughter is an imp who would never lie so quietly there.

  28. Shivani tells Nisha to let her die. Nisha: "No. You must live for your unborn child. Remember, every night has a dawn." Shivani: "True. There's one remaining trace of my husband, and it's this child within me. I beg God that my child will be born to avenge his mother!"

  29. Arjun Singh informs the prison chief that Shivani has filed a complaint against her. "Teach her a lesson she won't forget," he advises her, and she does — inducing Shivani to miscarry. Later, Shivani tells Nisha, "Don't cry. Look in my eyes. No chance you'll see even a single tear. Like the dried blood, each and every tear has dried up. Wipe away those tears, that make a woman weak. Do you know, Nisha, why woman is subjected to injustice? Because she endures it. But the world doesn't know that a woman's power of endurance is like the earth, which can endure any atrocity, but which, when its rage finally flares into flame, will crush everything. The world sees woman in her forms as mother, sister, daughter — but it hasn't seen her as the deceiver."

  30. The head of the prison summons Shivani. "You know why I called you here?" Shivani: "Yes. Usually people like you call death upon themselves." "Looks like you forgot the lesson I taught you!" "No, I remember. It erased the last trace of my husband. I remember it all. But today I'll do something you won't remember — because to remember, a person must be living. And you won't be."

  31. The inmates say Shivani was with them at the religious ceremony, giving her an ironclad alibi which prevents Arjun Singh from taking his revenge. Shivani taunts him: "You're right. I killed her. But you can't do anything to me, because the same way I had no proof that Vijay killed my husband, you have no proof of my guilt."

  32. Shivani's brother-in-law finally wins his jackpot. Meanwhile, Shivani's parole date is upon her. "Where'll you go?" Nisha asks her. Shivani replies, "This city before us isn't a city — it's a battlefield, and on this battlefield I must wage a holy war."

  33. Shivani hits her first target. Arjun Singh hears of it and asks whether she's out on parole yet. He finds her at her daughter's grave, and promises to put Shivani in the ground with her. Things don't turn out exactly as he'd planned.

  34. At Vijay's house, Shivani learns that the family moved two years ago. Disoriented, she decides to dedicate her life to caring for the disabled. But she asks her old friend the doctor to assign her to someplace other than the city, which has so many painful memories for her. The doctor sends her to a sanitorium in the countryside. Upon arriving, she learns from the doctor there that the sanitorium is funded by none other than the — Agnihotris! When she learns that Vijay lives nearby, she sets off with a sickle in hand to finish her business — but is waylaid when she runs into Vijay in a wheelchair, inert and inchoate. She asks that the responsibility for his care be placed solely on her.

  35. Vijay's mother comes to meet the goddess who has done such wonders for her son. Meanwhile, Shivani is deep in a "therapy" session with Vijay (SONG: BARSON KE BAAD). Sight of her shocks Vijay's mother, who is sure Shivani wants to kill her son. Shivani dumpes Vijay in the water and challenges him to pull himself out: "It's a test, Vijay, get out!" He does.

  36. Vijay's mother feels terribly guilty about the way she misjudged Shivani. Instead, they owe Shivani everything, because Vijay is now up and functional again. She sends Vijay to find Shivani at the local temple. He tells Shivani, "You know what my mother thinks? That you did me a big favor by giving me a new life. She's very simple. She doesn't understand that you didn't do me a favor, you did yourself one. I'm the only opportunity left to you. You're all alone in this world and no woman can bear to pass her life all alone. So, tell me once that you love me. I'm ready to marry you. Shivani, you gave me this new life, so it's my duty to give you a new one. Just once, only once, say you love me." Shivani embraces him — and stabs him. "Yes, Vijay, I gave you a new life — for this! So I could send you back! If an ocean of compassion and affection dwell in a woman's breast, then hate is a fire the smallest spark of which can turn it all to ashes! A woman can give life, and she can take it as well! It's a sin to kill, but to kill a demon like you is a virtuous act!" Vijay: "Shivani — just say one time that you love me!" He grabs her and drags her over the cliff; she hangs onto the ledge as he clings to her feet. "If I die," he says, "you die with me!" Shivani cries, "My living isn't as important as your dying!" She lets go. They fall to their deaths. The end.

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