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NH 10

Shooting Draft
April, 2013

Writer: Sudip Sharma


Director: Navdeep Singh

FADE IN:
EXT. GURGAON - DUSK
Gurgaon.
Malls and nothingness.
Slick highways and under-construction dust bowls.
Modern yet, in the dusty haze, somehow ancient. Primordial
even.
OPENING TITLES over these breathing images.
To the tune of a soft jazz number. Horns and trumpets.
We catch a SUV as it glides along on the road.
EXT. RANVEERS SUV / GURGAON ROAD - DUSK
A quaintly romantic medallion dangles from the rear view mirror.
Possibly, a remnant of a European holiday.
The jazz track playing on the stereo.
RANVEER, 30. Meera, late 20s.
Attractive. Successful. And quiet obviously - in love.
They are talking. They are laughing. But all we hear is the
smooth jazz number.
The SUV exits the main road and makes its way towards the
secured precincts of a gated highrise community.
EXT. POSH TOWER, PARKING LOT - DUSK
Ranveer pulls over in the parking lot.
As he turns the ignition off, the music comes to an abrupt halt.
RANVEER
Now say that in Tamil.
MEERA rolls her eyes.
Ranveer pleads - with his eyes.
Meera relents; leans in close to whisper -

2.

MEERA
(in Tamil; subtitled)
Screw the party. Lets go home and
make mad love till the sun comes up.
Ranveers face gives away that he finds it incredibly sexy.
RANVEER
Ooooh. Jaldi nikalenge. Promise. Cant
waste my lucky day.
Meera giggles.
The two kiss. Playful.
Until - Ranveer stops. Parts.
RANVEER
Have you been smoking?
Beat. Meera only just about manages to keep a straight face.
MEERA
Nope.
EXT. / INT. POSH APARTMENT - BALCONY, LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
A cigarette gets lit.
The HOSTESS and Meera - mid conversation - in the balcony of the
posh apartment.
In front of them - the urbal sprawl of Gurgaon.
Behind them - beyond the sliding glass doors - the party.
Laughter. Conversations. A happy gang. Theyre what youd call
Urban professionals.
MEERA
I knew youd say that.
HOSTESS
Bangalore is too I-T I-T, yaar. And
the bars close at eleven thirty.
Chalo, conceded ki weather better
hai...
Meera starts to say something but changes her mind and smiles in
surrender.
The Hostess offers her the cigarette.
Meera throws a glance inside.

3.

Ranveer - in the middle of an animated story. Nah, he isnt


looking.
She takes a couple of quick, stealthy puffs.
HOSTESS
Is he as much fun when sober?
Meera smiles as she looks again at Ranveer. A fond smile.
Yeah, she likes him.
Her phone rings.
Meera seems surprised as she answers it.
MEERA
Yeah, Vinay?
INT. POSH APARTMENT, LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
Ranveer finishes up a story and a round of laughter follows.
He doesnt notice Meera pull in behind him.
Realises as she puts her arms around him from behind.
He smiles.
Until Meera whispers in his ears MEERA
Listen. Gussa mat hona please. But...
RANVEER
No. No. No. Youre serious? This is
the...
Meera takes Ranveers arm and pulls him aside, apologising to
the gang.
MEERA
Sorry, guys. Need him for a second.
She steers him to a corner near the bar.
MEERA
Jaana hoga. Some fuck up with the test
batch. Raaste mein bataati hoon.
Ranveers about to say something but holds back.
RANVEER
Tell Vinay to handle it, na.

4.

MEERA
Usi ka phone tha.
RANVEER
Shruti ko bol. Why cant she...
Meeras beginning to get annoyed.
MEERA
Can we just go? Please?
RAJIV, a friend, swings by to fix a drink.
RAJIV
All ok, you guys?
RANVEER
Yeah.
MEERA
Office emergency. Have to go.
Rajiv groans.
RAJIV
Tu fire brigade mein thodi kaam karti
hai?
MEERA
Product launch, yaar. Cant help it.
Rajiv looks at Ranveer.
RAJIV
Toh tujhe main chodh dunga.
Meera looks at Ranveer. She can see he wants to stay back but
doesnt want to say it.
MEERA
Great. Rajiv chodh dega.
Ranveer looks confused.
MEERA
Coming now ya Rajiv ke saath?
RAJIV
Ruk jaa na yaar. Chodh doonga. We
hardly meet these days.

5.

INT. POSH APARTMENT, ELEVATOR - NIGHT


Meera waits by the elevator. Ranveers just a little behind.
RANVEER
You sure?
MEERA
Yeah. Dus minute ka toh rasta hai.
RANVEER
Pakka, na?
MEERA
Stop repeating yourself.
The elevator appears. Meera enters in.
RANVEER
Thought we had plans for the night.
Chal, office pahonchte hi phone kar.
The two look at each other. Until the door shuts between them.
EXT. POSH TOWER, PARKING LOT - NIGHT
Line of parked cars. No person in sight. Kinda urban-eerie.
Meera walks up to their high-end SUV.
EXT. GURGAON STREETS - NIGHT
The SUV exits the busy highway and enters an unlit back-road.
8A

A traffic light up ahead.

8A

Meera stops, even as a few others zip past honking. Shes the
law abiding type.
EXT. MEERAS CAR / GURGAON STREETS - NIGHT
A chirpy female RJ chirps about SOMETHING.
Meera changes the channel.
Another jabbering RJ.
A bike slows down as it approaches the red light. It comes to
a brief halt next to Meeras car.
The PILLION turns. His eyes fall on Meera.

6.

The RIDER looks around and then zips ahead.


The Pillion whispers something to the Rider.
The bike slows down again on the other side of the traffic
signal. And stops.
The pillions eyes are on Meeras car as he talks into his
cellphone.
The light turns green.
Oblivious to whats happening, Meera puts the car in motion.
Crosses over.
The bike now rides in front of her car. Slowly.
Meera tries to get past it but the bike swerves accordingly.
An irritated Meera honks. The bike stops. Right in front of
her car. Meera is forced to stop too.
She honks again. The Pillion gets down. The bike turns.
Headlight glare in her eyes. She cant see much.
The expression on Meeras face goes from irritation to worry.
She sees the pillion moving towards her window. She puts the
car in reverse gear.
Thud! The car hits something. Meera checks in the rear-view.
Theres a car right behind. Meeras car is blocked between
them.
She panics as she sees two men get down from the car.
She checks the locks. Locked.
Meera alone inside. Four men outside.
The medallion on the rearview - revolving. Slowly. Ominously.
The only sound - the female RJ going...
FEMALE RJ (O.S.)
GIBBER GABBER GIBBER GABBER.
And then The pillion hits the side window. It smashes - the glass
shattering around her in a million pieces.
She screams and presses on the accelerator.

7.

The car heads straight for the bike. Meera can see the
Riders face lighting up in fear.
At the last moment - she swerves the car hard, avoiding him
and his bike.
An oncoming truck honks hard at Meeras approaching car. The
headlights from it - a sea of white light that engulfs us.
FADE TO WHITE / FADE IN
INT. INDOOR SWIMMING POOL - NIGHT
The blue overhead lights reflect in the clear waters. A lone
figure in the waters - swimming like shes possessed.
Meera. Strong, rhythmic movements. She reaches the end of the
lap.
She pulls herself out of the water and sits down on the edge
of the pool.
Breathless.
She takes off her cap. A band-aid on her forehead.
A face appears above her. A FEMALE ATTENDANT.
ATTENDANT
Theek ho, mam?
Meera nods.
ATTENDANT
Baal baal bachi aap. Aajkal to
dekho...
Meera shuts her eyes tiredly, still breathing hard.
INT. POLICE STATION - DAY
Meera and Ranveer sit across the desk of the Station In-charge.
Chai and biscuits in incongruously dainty crockery on the table.
Meeras sifting through photos of known criminals. Disturbingly
ordinary faces.
The O.S. screams of someone being beaten up in the next room
arent helping her either.

8.

SI BENIWAL
Area mein poochh-taachh kar rahe hain.
Kuchh habitual offenders ki
questioning bhi chalu hai. Madam,
aapne unka registration number note
kiya hota toh matter kaafi simple
hota.
Meera finishes with the photos. Shakes her head.
SI BENIWAL
Nahin?
Beniwal gathers the pictures.
SI BENIWAL
Yeh shaher badhta bachcha hai, Sir.
Kood to lagaayega hee. Aapko inko aise
raat mein akele travel nahi karne dena
chahiye.
Ranveer and Meera. And an uncomfortable silence. Dotted only
with the fresh bout of O.S. screams.
The cop senses it; changes gears.
SI BENIWAL
Aapki DIG saab se achchi pehchaan hai.
Aap inke liye ek gun licence kyon nahi
apply kar lete?
Ranveer looks at Meera. She seems uncomfortable.
MEERA
Gun?
INT. MEERAS APARTMENT, LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
Ranveer and Meera at the dining table.
Eating in silence.
Ranveer looks at her.
She seems lost - twirling the spoon in her bowl of daal.
He puts his hand over hers.
Just then - the MAID appears with chappatis. Meera pulls her
hand away.
The maid leaves the chappatis on the table.

9.

And its back to the uncomfortable silence on the dining table.


EXT. / INT. MEERAS APARTMENT - DAY
The boundary wall of the building.
On it - a kitten. Scared. The incessant O.S. barks of a pack of
street dogs below making its life miserable.
Title Card: 3 WEEKS LATER.
A tired Meera stands by the window, sipping coffee, and watching
the kitten carefully make its way across.
Behind her on the table - the open laptop with a work-inprogress presentation.
Ping! A mail arrives in her inbox.
Meera moves in to check.
Its a mail from Ranveer. Subject - What do you think?
She opens it.
A travel website. One of those palace-hotels in the desert.
INT. MEERAS OFFICE, CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY
On a big screen, slides with the proposed plan for the launch
of an economy brand of sanitary napkins for the rural market.
Bar graphs and all that marketing mumbo-jumbo.
MEERA
So even if assume a conservative five
year time-frame to come to 50% of
Chinas per capita consumption of
female hygiene products, we are
talking about an annualized growth
rate of 28% in this segment.
Meera stands in front of her laptop giving a presentation.
MEERA
Moving on to the brand name. The
key insight from our qualitative
research was that in a majority of
cases, the purchase of the product
is conducted by the kids of the
household.
Surprised reactions from the team, including from THE BOSS.

10.

Meera explains.
MEERA
Chemist shops in Tier-2 and rural
markets are manned mostly by men.
Women are too embarrassed to buy
the product over the counter. And
the men of the household find it...
beneath their honour. So in most
cases, it is the child who is sent
to buy the product.
A couple of amused sniggers.
THE BOSS
(sighs)
Only in India.
Meeras phone vibrates silently on the desk. She throws a
quick glance. Ranveer calling.
A look at her watch. Its 3.
She hastens the pace of her presentation.
MEERA
Which means that our brand name has
to be something which can be easily
remembered by a child. And from the
shortlisted names, the one with the
maximum recall in a sample set of
800 kids was...
She presses the next key on the laptop.
The word Saathi appears on screen.
THE BOSS frowns. Considering it.
She presses next again. The Thank you slide.
She looks at her watch and then at her boss. He gets it.
THE BOSS
Great job, Meera. Well done.
Alright, everyone. Saathi. Lets
sleep over it. Meera needs to
leave.
The group begins to wrap up. VINAY, one of the executives,
sports a cheeky grin.
VINAY
I got a key insight too.

11.

Everyone looks at him.


VINAY
Evidence would suggest that women
tend to have it easy with their
bosses.
Just a hint of professional jealousy in that comment.
MEERA
Technically speaking, thats an
observation, Vinay. Not an insight.
Thought they teach you all that at
IIM.
Everyone sniggers. Vinay musters a sheepish smile.
Meera pockets her pen.
INT. OFFICE WASHROOM - DAY
The bathroom counter. On it - Meeras compact and some random
accessories.
And next to them - a HANDGUN. A nifty little point two two.
Meera, now dressed in comfortable weekend clothes, stuffs her
office clothes into the hand bag, followed by the compact.
Then puts the gun in.
She looks at herself in the mirror.
Devoid of the corporate power-wear, she suddenly looks
different. Kinda vulnerable. Bereft of armor.
INT. MEERAS OFFICE, LOBBY - DAY
Meera rushes down the long, sanitised corridor with the hand bag
and the laptop bag slung across either shoulders.
The cellphone pressed to her ear. Its ringing. No response.
The PERKY RECEPTIONIST shouts out to her receding figure.
PERKY RECEPTIONIST
Happy birthday in advance, Meera Mam.
Have a nice trip.
Meera waves back to her on her way out.

12.

INT. OFFICE ELEVATOR - DAY


Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. The pen in Meeras hand.
Her eyes - restless. On the floor indicator.
She feels something. Notices The LIFT MAN checking out her reflection in the steel door.
Her bra strap.
She adjusts.
Their eyes meet. He looks away sheepishly.
EXT. OUTSIDE MEERAS OFFICE COMPLEX - DAY
Ranveer stands next to his SUV arguing with a TRAFFIC CONSTABLE.
RANVEER
Dikhaao kahaan hai no parking sign.
TRAFFIC CONSTABLE
Aagey lagaa hai.
RANVEER
Toh maine aagey park kari hai?
TRAFFIC CONSTABLE
Sau meter ke andar hai. Chalaan toh
katega.
Glare match from both parties.
Just then, Ranveer notices Meera come rushing out of the
building; towards them.
He waves her to the car.
RANVEER
You go sit inside.
Meera stops short. Then goes to the car. She opens the boot.
Two travel bags and a golf kit already there.
Meera dumps the laptop bag in it. Then unzips her handbag. In it
- the gun.
She stops. Notices - The constable looking at her.
She shuts the boot.

13.

Then gets into the car with her handbag.


In the rearview - she sees Ranveer pay up the constable who
hands him a challan.
As the constable walks away muttering angrily, Ranveer gets into
the car.
RANVEER
Ridiculous, yaar. Koi No Parking ka
sign dikh raha hai?
Shes more than a little irritated.
MEERA
Toh fine kyun diya?
Ranveer looks at her.
RANVEER
Just trying to impress you.
Meera lets out a half-smile. Picks up a map lying on the
dashboard. Then smiles anyway.
MEERA
Nice try.
They drive away.
EXT. HIGHWAY / TOLL BOOTH / RANVEERS SUV - DAY
The SUV makes its way on the highway.
19A

Up ahead - a toll booth. With a long queue.

19A

A few of the other lanes have been blocked off. Cops try hard
to control the traffic.
Honks. Lane-cuttings.
They crawl up to the TOLL BOOTH.
Ranveer hands over the cash to the CLERK.
RANVEER
Lanes kyun band kar rakhi hain?
TOLL BOOTH CLERK
Chaar laundey they Pajero mein.
Attendant ne toll maanga.
He stops. Ranveer looks at him in confusion.

14.

RANVEER
Toh?
The toll booth guy looks straight at Ranveer as he hands him
the slip and a couple of toffees for change.
TOLL BOOTH CLERK
Goli maar di.
Ranveer is still trying to process it when the cars behind
begin to honk.
Still perplexed, he puts the car in motion.
MEERA
Kya hua?
RANVEER
Huh?
MEERA
Kya bol raha tha wo?
Ranveer looks at her. Offers her the toffees.
RANVEER
Nah... nothing. Some random fight.
He steps on the gas and they zip ahead.
EXT. HIGHWAY / RANVEERS SUV - DAY
The highway has stretched out nice and wide. The SUVs into
cruise mode now.
A signboard.
Welcome to NH 10. Have a safe journey.
A SONG plays on the radio.
Nice & smooth. The perfect drive song.
Meera reclines her seat. Puts her bare feet up on the dashboard.
Shes beginning to look relaxed.
MEERA
I wanted a swim first thing. Par late
pahonchenge na?
Ranveer looks at her.

15.

RANVEER
I booked the private pool wali cottage
- for us.
Meera makes an am impressed face.
Ranveer smiles. Naughty.
MEERA
What? Haha. Wait. Wait.
RANVEER
What?
MEERA
Birthday mera. Lucky day tumhara? How
does that work?
Smiling - she slides down the window. Lets the wind blow in her
hair.
EXT. LIQUOR SHOP - DAY
The car stops in front of an untidy cluster of shops.
Ranveer walks towards what they call a theka.
Rickety plastic tables on which grumpy looking men sip cheap
whiskey in silence.
Ranveer feels every single pair of eye on him as he walks up
to the shop counter.
RANVEER
Do bottle Bisleri.
The SHOP ATTENDANT goes off to get the bottles.
Ranveer looks at the men sitting at a nearby table.
RANVEER
Tau, yeh Basantpura ka cut yehi
hai?
The men look at each other before one of them MAN AT THE THEKA
Sa to yo hi.
RANVEER
Kitna, 3-4 ghante hoga yehan se?
Raasta kaisa hai?

16.

MAN AT THE THEKA


Bol toh godi kar chhod aayein?
The men smirk. Ranveer smiles. Awkward.
IN THE CAR:
Meera ties up her hair in a bun when she sees a man wrapped in a
blanket approach her.
HITCH HIKER
Kis taraf jaa rahe ho? Hisaar?
Meera. Awkward.
MEERA
Sorry.
She slides up the window. The man stays there, looking at her
from the other side of the glass.
Meeras relieved when she sees Ranveer reappear and get into the
car.
Ranveer looks at her.
RANVEER
You ok?
MEERA
Huh... Yeah.
As Ranveer drives off Meeras disturbed eyes are on the sideview mirror - On the
receding figure of the blanket-man.
EXT. RANVEERS SUV / ROAD - DAY
They drive into whats beginning to look more and more like
the hinterland.
Arid farmlands.
A little habitation pops up every now and then and then we
are back to the arid landscape.
22A

The radio playing in the car tries hard to catch frequency.


22A
Ranveer changes the channels. Still no good.
Only that disturbing screeching.
Meera switches it off.

17.

Sudden silence in the car.


EXT. ROADSIDE DHABA, PARKING LOT / RANVEERS SUV - DAY
A mid-sized eating joint. With a dozen or so vehicles parked
outside.
Ranveer turns his SUV into the Dhaba parking.
A police jeep exiting the dhaba crosses them.
And then, out of nowhere, a girl and a guy come running and
appear bang in front of their vehicle.
Ranveer brakes hard and honks harder in protest.
The girl turns to look at them for a moment. She looks lost.
And then she is gone. Pulled away by the guy. They seem to be
chasing the jeep.
Ranveer grumbles as he watches them disappear.
He parks the car. They step out.
Stretch a bit.
MEERA
Dickey kholna, please.
Ranveer opens the boot.
Meera walks to the back of the car.
She unzips her handbag.
The gun peeps out.
Meera takes it out and puts it away into her travel bag.
Ranveer appears behind her.
RANVEER
Tune promise kiya tha hamesha handbag
main rakhegi.
MEERA
Par aaj toh tum ho na saath mein.
Ranveer looks at her. Hurt in his eyes.

18.

MEERA
Sorry. I... I didnt mean it that way.
Just that... bahot heavy hai yaar...
She searches for more words. Cant find them.
Her phone begins to ring - filling in the silence between them.
Meera looks at it. Amma calling...
She answers it and walks away.
MEERA
(in Tamil)
Yes, Amma... Im fine...
Ranveer shuts the boot. And stands there for a while.
Alone.
INT. ROADSIDE DHABA, TOILET - DAY
Meera walks into the dimly lit, depressing ladies room.
MEERA
(on the phone)
No, they havent found anyone yet... I
dont think they will. Listen, Amma...
Low battery... Talk to you tomorrow...
yeah, yeah, bye.
She cuts the phone. Sighs.
Sudden silence.
Meera looks at a stall with disgust. Then pushes the door
open gingerly.
She seems relieved it doesnt look as dirty as she had
expected.
INSIDE THE TOILET:
Meera sits on the commode.
She takes out a cigarette. Lights it up.
Ah! Been a while.
In front of her - on the bathroom door - graffiti.
A sketch of female anatomy with accentuated private parts. And
the choicest of abuses in Hindi.

19.

EXT. ROADSIDE DHABA - DAY


A cup of tea. Going by the creamy layer on top of it Untouched.
Ranveer. At a corner table. Disturbed.
A waiter appears.
WAITER
Kya lenge?
INT. ROADSIDE DHABA, TOILET - DAY
The sound of the flush.
The door opens and Meera walks out.
She walks up to the wash-basin.
Her eyes go to the mirror. The door behind her. With the
graffiti on it.
She tries to ignore it.
But cant.
Takes out a tissue from the bag. Wets it.
And heads for the door.
She tries to scrub the graffiti off. The damn things sticky.
But she goes for it with all seriousness.
Scrub. Scrub. Scrub.
Her concentration - almost manic.
And just then PINKY (O.S.)
Didi?
A startled Meera turns.
Pinky stands there, the same young small-town girl who had
almost bumped into their car.
Nervous. Edgy. Looking over her shoulder.

20.

PINKY
Didi, please... please hamaari help
karo... Hum log bahot problem mein
hain...
Meeras taken aback. Doesnt know how to react.
She side-steps her and heads out.
Pinky follows her.
PINKY
Please, Didi. Main aur mera
huaband... Hamein saath le chalo...
MEERA
(mutters)
Sorry.
Pinky steps in front of her.
PINKY
Didi, please, Didi...
She grabs Meeras hand. Meera doesnt like it. Snaps.
MEERA
Side hato.
Pinky looks at her with defeat. Steps aside.
Meera storms out of there.
EXT. ROADSIDE DHABA - DAY
Meera looks pre-occupied as she joins Ranveer at the table.
RANVEER
Butter chicken, roti and daal ok, na?
MEERA
Huh?
She sits down and busies herself with the hand-sanitizer.
Ranveer looks at her as she rubs her hands furiously.
RANVEER
You ok?
Meeras about to say something.
But just then - shouts and screams.

21.

They look around. So does the rest of the dhaba.


Theres a little commotion by the parking lot outside.
And then, a SCREAM. A distinct female scream.
Meeras face loses colour as a thought comes to her mind.
Ranveer looks at Meera.
Then gets up and walks towards the scene.
MEERA
Ranveer...
Meera follows in concern.
EXT. ROADSIDE DHABA, PARKING LOT - DAY
A little crowd of curious onlookers has gathered around but
no one seems willing to jump into the scene.
The Scene A group of men. Rough. Mean. Shouting.
A young couple. Scared. Screaming.
The men are pulling the two out of the dhaba towards the
parking lot.
Mukesh, the young guy, clutches on to a parked scooter for
support.
The scooter tumbles over. Mukesh still doesnt let go of it.
FAUJI and OMI drag him along with the scooter now.
MUKESH
(screams)
Pinky... Pinky...
SATBIR, the leader of the pack, has the screaming girl by the
arm. She throws herself on the ground in desperation but he
drags her along nevertheless.
ASHOK and RAMOTAR now jump in to help Omi pull the boy along.
They finally manage to wrestle the scooter out of his grip
and hoist him in the air.
Ranveer pushes through the crowd. Meera right behind.
Meera notices Pinky looking at her - I told you so!

22.

Ranveer looks at the crowd as it murmurs protests but stays


on the periphery.
He steps in. Walks up to Satbir.
RANVEER
Kya problem hai?
Satbir turns to give him a glare.
SATBIR
Behen hai meri.
The pleadings of Pinky seem to verify that.
PINKY
Bhai... chhod de bhai... bhai jaane
de...
Ranveer now looks at the crowd for some support but they seem
to be losing interest.
ONLOOKERS AT DHABA
(murmurs)
Family matter hai...
The group pull the couple up to a parked Scorpio. They try to
open the doors but they seem to be locked.
FAUJI
Chaabi kiske paas hai?
They look around for the key. Confusion. Curses.
Until Omi notices someone already sitting in the car. The
youngest of them all - CHHOTEY.
OMI
Chhotey... khol baawle.
Chhotey fiddles with the locks with the daftness of a
special child.
More curses. Finally he manages to open the locks.
Omi pushes Chhotey aside and jumps into the drivers seat.
As they are pushed into the vehicle, Mukesh and Pinky scream
even louder now. Almost like wails.
Ranveer looks at Meera.
In her eyes - concern for the girl. And fear.

23.

Ranveer steps up. Puts a firm hand on Satbirs shoulder.


RANVEER
Boss...
Beat.
In one motion, Satbir turns and slaps Ranveer hard.
SATBIR
Bhosadi ke, bola na behen hai.
Ranveer is stunned into silence.
The group jumps into the vehicle and drives away, along with
the young couple.
Suddenly - all quiet.
Ranveer can sense all eyes on him as he stands there.
Meera touches his arm gently. He looks at her. Rage and
humiliation in his eyes.
EXT. RANVEERS SUV / ROAD - DAY
Ranveers SUV hurtles down a lonely stretch of the road.
Tense silence in the car. Just the nervous tick-tocking of
Meeras pen.
Meera throws a quick glance at the speedometer. Its beyond
hundred.
She looks at Ranveer with concern. He has his eyes fixed on
the road.
MEERA
Slow down, RV.
He doesnt respond.
MEERA
You did the right thing. You stood
up for...
RANVEER
(cuts her)
Drop it.
MEERA
I mean it. Itne saare log the
wahaan, kisi ne...

24.

RANVEER
I said shut the fuck up, Meera.
She looks at him. Suddenly angry.
MEERA
Listen, if this is how its gonna
be, I dont even wanna go.
Ranveers silent again - as the car hurtles through the wilderness.
Ranveers eyes veer towards something off the road.
A moment of distraction. And BAM!
The car hits something.
Meera lets out a startled cry as the car swerves.
Ranveer brakes hard. The car screeches to a noisy halt.
He steps out to see A dead lamb. Or the messy remains of it.
Meera pulls down the window and peeps out nervously.
MEERA
What is it?
No response from Ranveer. His eyes have gone back to what he had
originally spotted off the road that led to the accident.
MEERA
Ranveer?
Still no response.
Intrigued - she follows his gaze. Towards the patch of
wilderness off the road.
The Scorpio. Going down a side road in a cloud of dust.
She senses whats going on in his head. Panics.
MEERA
Ranveer... no...
Ranveer looks at her.

25.

Before Meera can do much, Ranveer unlocks the boot and walks
up to it.
Takes something from the bag.
She just knows what it is. The gun.
MEERA
RV... just let it go... please
RV...
He gets back in the car.
He puts the car in motion, taking it off the main road, and
on to the kachcha road that leads to the Scorpio.
EXT. KACHCHA ROAD / RANVEERS SUV - DAY
Meera protests incessantly as Ranveer approaches the Scorpio.
He stops a little distance away from the Scorpio.
MEERA
RV, dont do this. Please. Ill never
talk to you again.
RANVEER
Relax. Aaj toh main hoon na.
MEERA
No. RV, dont be stupid. I didnt
mean it that way. I swear.
Ranveer looks at her. Not quite believing it.
MEERA
Please, RV. Please...
Ranveer shushes her.
RANVEER
Relax. Idiot gaon waale hain. Im
just gonna scare them a bit. Teach
them not to fuck around, ok?
He gets out of the car.
RANVEER
Stay right here. And lock the
doors.
She watches in despair as Ranveer shuts the door and walks
away.

26.

EXT. WILDERNESS OFF THE ROAD - DAY


Its eerily quiet.
Ranveer strides up to the Scorpio.
Its empty. Nobody around.
He peeps in for a better view.
POV: Someone watches from a distance. Ranveer trying to look
inside the Scorpio - the gun stuffed in the back of his
jeans.
Back with Ranveer: He can hardly see much behind the tinted
windows.
He checks the door. Its locked.
Ranveer looks around.
Foliage. And a little pathway that cuts through it.
Ranveer takes it.
EXT. WILDERNESS / RANVEERS SUV - DAY
Meera in the car. Tense. Restless. Tick-tocking her pen.
She looks at her watch. Then looks out.
Quiet. Too quiet.
The medallion on the rearview. Still. Ominously still.
EXT. WILDERNESS OFF THE ROAD - DAY
The foliage seems to be getting thicker as Ranveer goes
further in. The pathway too seems to have disappeared.
Ranveers tensing up a bit now.
He stops. Thinks.
Then pulls the gun out from behind.
And moves ahead.

27.

EXT. WILDERNESS / RANVEERS SUV - DAY


Meera looks at her watch again. Its been a while since
Ranveer left.
She flips out her phone. Dials.
A phone rings in the car.
Ranveers phone. Lying on the dashboard.
She cuts it. Curses.
Thinks. Makes a decision.
Turns to open the car door to step out.
BOO! A weird face stuck to the window trying to peep in.
Meera screams as she recoils in surprise.
EXT. WILDERNESS OFF THE ROAD - DAY
The foliage seems to be giving way to a clearing.
Ranveer approaches it tentatively - the gun held tight in his
hands.
He removes the bushes from in front.
To see The men huddled around the young couple who are on the
ground. Only a few yards away from Ranveer.
Something not quite right about the scene.
Ranveer holds himself back, trying to figure out whats going
on.
And then, all of a sudden, Fauji swings the iron rod that he
had been holding.
It lands on Mukeshs knee.
Crack. Scream.
A heartwrenching scream.
Ranveer is left stunned by the brutality of it.
Until - Omi feels a presence and turns.

28.

Ranveer presses back into the shadows. Breathing hard.


Suddenly not feeling so confident any more.
Not finding anything untoward, Omi turns away.
Ranveer sighs in relief.
In the clearing - Pinky tries to crawl up to Mukesh.
But Satbir grabs her hair and starts to drag her away.
She resists - throwing her legs about in violent protest.
Satbir kicks her in the gut with his boot.
She doubles over. Spits out some blood.
Ranveer watches it all with stunned disbelief.
We notice - the hand holding the gun is shaking.
EXT. WILDERNESS / RANVEERS SUV - DAY
Meera inside the SUV.
Chhotey outside the SUV.
There seems to be something weird about him. But in an
innocent sort of a way.
Chhotey runs up to the other side - the drivers window.
Looking at the steering with fascination.
Meera too realises now that he is probably just a special
kid.
She relaxes a bit. Pulls down the driver window just a
little.
MEERA
Tumne kisi ko dekha yehaan?
CHHOTEY
Gaadi. Teri hai? Kiski hai?
MEERA
Lamba sa. Blue shirt.
CHHOTEY
Gaadi chalaaun?
Meera realises Chhoteys mind is completely on the car.

29.

MEERA
Pehle bataa blue shirt waala kahaan
hai.
Chhotey looks at her gravely. Makes a gun with his fingers.
Shoots at Meera.
Meera looks at him. Alarm bells.
She grabs the keys out of the ignition and jumps out.
She runs over to Chhoteys side.
MEERA
Kis taraf gaya wo?
Chhoteys eyes are on the keys in her hands.
Meera shakes him up rather fiercely.
MEERA
Kis taraf?
Chhoteys taken aback. He nervously points in the direction
Ranveer had gone.
Meera switches on the auto lock as she heads in that
direction.
Chhotey watches her go. Then tries to get into the car.
Realises its locked.
CHHOTEY
Kutti.
He notices - the slit of the slightly opened window.
He puts his hand in. Tries to get to the door lock inside.
But its a very small opening. And his arm gets stuck.
Chhotey panics. Struggles.
But finally manages to wriggle out.
EXT. WILDERNESS OFF THE ROAD - DAY
Ranveer, still crouched behind the bush, watches as Satbir
tries to force-feed something to Pinky from a bottle.
She writhes and contorts in agony.
Two men move in to pin her down.

30.

Satbir forces the liquid in her mouth. Some of it goes in,


some of it spills out.
RANVEER
Fuck.
He has seen enough. Ranveer begins to slowly back away from
there.
And just then, he hears a voice. Like a distant shout.
Ranveer freezes. No. It cant be. Is that...?
MEERA (O.S.)
(still faint)
Ranveer!
Yes, it is Meera. Getting closer to him. To them.
Have they heard her? He doesnt know. But at this rate, they
soon will.
Ranveer scampers away from there in the direction of her
voice.
BACK WITH MEERA:
Meera looks tense as she walks further into the jungle.
MEERA
(mutters)
What the fuck have you done?
(shouts)
Ranveer!
She freezes as she notices a figure come running towards her.
As it gets closer, she realises its Ranveer.
Meera lets out a huge sigh as she spots him.
MEERA
Ranveer, you ok?
Ranveer shushes her up.
RANVEER
Lets just get out of here.
MEERA
Kya hua? I thought...
Ranveer looks at her. Meera can sense hes disturbed.

31.

RANVEER
Chal.
He takes her hand and they run towards their car.
They have only gone ahead a hundred meters or so when Chhotey
appears before them. Hes blocking their path.
Ranveer points the gun at him in panic.
MEERA
Its ok. Hes ok.
RANVEER
No, hes not. Theyre fucking
butchers. Meera - they...
MEERA
Hes like a kid, Ranveer.
Ranveer gestures to Chhotey.
RANVEER
Side Hatt.
Chhotey looks confused.
RANVEER
Bhenchod side hatt. Nahi toh goli
maar doonga.
Meera feels a presence. Turns. Her face goes white.
MEERA
(screams)
Ranveer!
Ranveer turns. Too late.
Whack! An iron rod lands on his head.
FADE TO BLACK / FADE IN
EXT. WILDERNESS, CLEARING - DUSK
The fading sunlight.
A man covered in sweat. A pickaxe in his hands. He raises it.
It comes down with full force.

32.

Its Omi - digging the ground, along with Ashok, Ramotar and
Fauji. Chhotey fools around, jumping between the flying
shovels.
Omi reprimands him, not unaffectionately.
OMI
Laarey ho ley beera. Haath godey
fudwayega.
A little away from them - a tree.
Tied to it are Meera and a barely conscious Ranveer.
Meera sobs and whimpers in fear.
Ranveers face and shirt are matted with blood.
She stops as she notices Satbirs eyes on them. He sits on
his haunches only a little away from them. Ranveers gun lies
next to him on the ground.
Hes looking at photos on Meeras smart-phone. Holidays.
Parties.
Smoking a cigarette by himself, he seems calm. Unnaturally
calm.
RANVEER
Maine Dilli phone kar diya tha. DIG
ko. Anant Sahai. Check kar le. Dost
hai mera. Aur dhaabe pe sab ne
ladaayi dekhi hai. Koi na koi to
bata dega. Police aati hogi.
Satbir looks at him.
SATBIR
Thaara phone kathey sa? Gaaddi
mein?
RANVEER
Dekh bhai. Galti kar raha hai tu.
Bola na hum koi reporter sheporter
nahi hain.
SATBIR
Toh Chaudhri sa? Paachha kyaa ne
aaya? Oore ke swaang ho rya tha?
RANVEER
Tune haath uthaaya. Toh mujhe bhi
gussa aa gaya. Dono se galti ho
gayi. Baat khatam karte hain.

33.

Satbirs hardly interested.


RANVEER
Dekh.
Ranveers bluff aint working. He tries another approach.
RANVEER
Paise chahiye? Bol.
Satbir looks insulted. Grabs Ranveers throat in a flash.
Meera panics.
MEERA
Bhaiyya please jaane do. Kisi ko
kuchh nahi bataayenge bhaiyya.
Satbir looks at her. Lets out a smile. Sad, almost selfmocking.
SATBIR
Rehen de. Bhaanan ke dinmaan theek
naa sa aaj. (Its not a great day
to be a sister)
He lets go of Ranveer and turns his face away.
In front of him, the tortured bodies of the young couple on
the ground. No movement. Are they dead?
Nope. Pinky spurts to life and retches. Barf and blood.
Meera notices Satbir looking at Pinky with a weird concoction
of pain, anger and love.
Pinky tries to drag herself up to Mukesh. Her fingers trying
to inch closer to his.
Hatred rises on Satbirs face.
He picks up the gun and walks up to Pinky.
Pinky stops as she sees him. Their eyes meet.
A long moment passes.
Bang. Bang.
Little chunks of flesh splatter out of two holes in Pinkys
head.
Ranveer and Meera are left stunned.

34.

MEERA
(frantic)
Fuck. He shot her. He shot her,
Ranveer.
The other men too come running up.
Silence.
Omi points to Mukeshs battered body.
OMI
Baaki isme ghaal de.
FAUJI
Goli hi maarni thi to gaaon bhela
karne ki ke jaroot thi?
They look at him. Fauji offers Satbir his shovel.
Satbir feels just a tad unsure. But he can sense Faujis eyes
are on him. Are you man enough?
He shoves the gun in the back of his pants and takes the
shovel.
He pulls himself. And swings.
Crunch! It lands on Mukeshs knee.
Mukesh lets out a wail. Almost inhuman.
FAUJI
Jey baat... Chhet... Chhet
bhaanchod na.
Goaded by Fauji, Satbir swings again. And again. And again.
Maniacal.
The gun falls off from behind his pants. He doesnt care. He
continues to swing.
BY THE TREE:
Meera and Ranveer. Horror writ large on their faces. Even
though they have shut their eyes tight.
But they can hear. Mukeshs wails. Then his whimpers. Then
his silence.
Slowly Meera opens her eyes.

35.

She notices the men talking. Then turning to look at them.


She cant hear them but can sense the discussion is about
them.
Meera can see Faujis eyes are on her. And then they travel
down her body. Slowly. Ominously.
A chill runs down her spine.
The men seem to have agreed upon something.
Fauji leads the men as they head back to the digging.
Chhotey looks disappointed with what he has heard. He doesnt
follow the men. Instead - comes towards the tree.
Ranveer applies all his strength and manoeuvres in trying to
wriggle out of the tied rope.
He stops when he sees Chhotey appear before them.
CHHOTEY
Gaaddi. Bech denge.
Ranveer looks at him unintelligibly.
CHHOTEY
Thaari gaaddi. Bech denge.
Bhaadargarh mein jaankaar hai.
MEERA
(frustrated)
What the fuck is he talking about?
RANVEER
Theyre going to kill us.
He loses it. Gives his rope several desperate tugs.
RANVEER
Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.
The tugs dont work. Ranveer gives up.
Meeras eyes are on Chhotey though. She senses an opening.
MEERA
Tumko chahiye? Gaadi?
Chhotey looks at her - you serious?
MEERA
Bolo. Chahiye?

36.

CHHOTEY
Paise?
Ranveer too notices Chhoteys interest with surprise. Pitches
in his bit RANVEER
Haan, paise bhi denge.
Chhotey seems confused. Begins to lose interest.
Meera cleans up.
MEERA
Nahi paise waise nahi chahiye. Bas
rassi khol do. Gaadi tumhaari.
CHHOTEY
Pakke se?
Meera nods vigorously.
MEERA
Chaabi... chaabi le lo. Pocket mein
hai.
Chhotey tentatively moves closer to Meera. Leans in.
His face, his body - so close to her.
His hand goes into the pocket of her jeans. Searches.
Ranveer looks at Meera. She signals to him to relax.
Chhotey finally plucks the keys out. He seems ecstatic.
MEERA
Ab tumhaari baari.
Chhotey throws a quick glance back at the men. They seem to
be still digging.
He turns back to look at Meeras face. She manages to conjure
a desperately friendly smile.
Chhotey goes behind the tree and starts to untie her knot.
Meera. Tense. Hoping.
Chhotey. Struggling with the tough knot.
Back with the men:

37.

Omi stops digging and looks. They have dug up a four feet
deep grave.
OMI
Ho gaya ke?
A tired Fauji throws his shovel away.
FAUJI
Hor ke tel kaadna sa?
He jumps out of the grave.
His eyes go to the tree.
Meera and Ranveer. Still tied. Chhotey is not visible from
behind the tree.
He sits down to catch his breath.
The other men too come out of the grave. Throw themselves on
the ground tiredly.
FAUJI
Soki... kiraasni le aa.
ASHOK
Saans to le lene de khasam.
Back at the tree:
Chhotey finally manages to untie the knot.
Meera quickly frees herself.
Ranveers eyes light up with renewed hope.
RANVEER
Meera. Quick.
She starts working on Ranveers knot.
Ranveers eyes are on the men. One of them gets up. Starts
walking towards them.
RANVEER
Quick. Theyre coming.
Meera finally manages to untie the knot.
Ranveer gets up. Takes Meeras hand.
They start to run.

38.

Ashok notices them. He SHOUTS.


It gets the attention of the other men. They too get up and
run in the direction of Ranveer and Meera.
Ranveer panics. He looks about.
The gun. Lying on the ground.
Ranveer makes a dash for it.
He is actually running towards the men now.
The men notice what he is going for.
They too head for it.
Ranveer manages to pick up the gun with the men only a few
yards away.
The men screech to a halt.
Ranveer takes them on gunpoint.
Standoff. Tentative movements. Silent threats. Heavy
breathing.
Ranveer backs up towards Meera. Points the gun at Chhotey.
RANVEER
Chaabi de.
Chhotey doesnt budge.
RANVEER
(shouts)
Chhabi de.
Chhotey looks betrayed. Shakes his head.
RANVEER
(screams)
Goli maar dunga saaley paagal.
Looks like he means it. A worried Omi jumps in.
OMI
De de Chhotey.
CHHOTEY
Meri gaaddi hai.
OMI
Hor ghani lyaa dunga.

39.

CHHOTEY
Baawla bana rahe ho saare. Naa deta
main.
The moment - almost funny. But for the gun.
Ranveer has had enough. He moves towards Chhotey to grab the
key from him.
Chhotey resists. Holds on to it like its life.
Tug of war with the key.
Chhotey screams. So does Ranveer. So does Omi.
Confusion. Chaos.
BANG.
A moment passes before Chhotey goes down.
On his shirt, right where the heart is, a splotch of blood.
Everyones stunned. Not least - Ranveer.
Meera snaps out first.
MEERA
Ranveer. Run.
She takes Ranveers hand and they scamper out of there.
The group rushes to Chhotey.
Omi shakes his body vigorously.
OMI
Chhotey... uth re... uth laala.
Satbir puts a hand over Omis shoulder.
Omi looks at him. Satbir shakes his head. Hes gone.
Omi slumps down on the ground.
OMI
Baalak tha yaar yo.
Fauji seems to be getting impatient.
FAUJI
Nikal jaange dono.
No response.

40.

FAUJI
Karo maatam inghe aalthi paalthi
laga ke.
He signals to Ashok and Ramotar. The three pick up whatever
weapons they can find and run in the direction in which
Ranveer and Meera had gone.
Omi notices - the car keys still wrenched tightly in
Chhoteys fist.
He tugs at it. He still wont let go.
OMI
(curses)
Cheechad saala.
He puts some more effort. And then some more. The anger on
his face rising with every second. He lets out a scream.
EXT. WILDERNESS OFF THE ROAD - DUSK
Night is finally descending.
Ranveer and Meera. On the run.
Ranveer seems overwhelmed with what just happened back there.
RANVEER
Did he die?
MEERA
We... we need to find help.
RANVEER
You think he died?
MEERA
Lets get to the cops.
RANVEER
Fuck. Fuck.
They reach the Scorpio first. Ranveer checks the door - just
in case.
Its locked. He curses. Meera holds his face in her palms like to make him focus.
MEERA
Ranveer. We need to get to the
cops. Somehow.

41.

Ranveer takes a deep breath. Composes himself.


RANVEER
Yes. We... we just need to get out
of here. Sahai hai na. Sab sort out
ho jaayega.
He runs towards their car. She follows.
As they get closer, Ranveer stops. He can hear something.
Its a phone ringing.
RANVEER
My phone.
He runs up to the car and pulls at the door in vain.
RANVEER
I need my fucking phone.
The phone lies on the dashboard. Ringing a soothing tune. The
only thing glowing in the darkness around.
Hope. Tantalising.
RANVEER
Find a rock. Ill break the window.
Meera scrambles in the dark for something big enough.
Ranveer notices - the little slit in the window.
He puts his hand in. Tries to reach up to the phone on the
dashboard.
Its just out of reach. He tries to dig further. The arm gets
stuck in the slit.
RANVEER
Shit!
Meera hears something.
Feet. Shouts.
MEERA
Shit! Theyre coming. Lets go,
Ranveer.
Ranveer panics. Tries harder. The damned arm wont come out.
And The men are getting closer.

42.

Panic. Tension. And then From behind a bush - the men emerge out.
Fauji, Ashok & Ramotar - knives and rods in their hands.
They look at the car.
Ranveer and Meera are not there.
The men go running towards the car. Look all around it.
Except for where they actually are.
Under the car.
Meera and Ranveer. On their stomachs. Their tense faces
within kicking distance of Faujis feet.
Heck, they can even see that the laces on one of his shoes
are untied.
The men give up - having not found them.
They run away in another direction, away from the car.
In the scampering Fauji stumbles. Almost falls.
He recovers. Looks down angrily.
Damn, those fucking shoelaces. Or in Faujis words FAUJI
Bhaanchod!
He bends over to tie them.
Only to find himself looking straight at two crouching bodies
under the car body.
RANVEER
RUN!
As the men run towards them The two struggle to get out from under the car.
The men are almost there. Meera screams.
And just then, Ranveer remembers something.
The gun in his hand.

43.

He brings it up and points it at the men.


They stop in their steps.
Ranveer and Meera make a dash again.
RANVEER
(calming himself)
We have the gun. We still have the
gun.
He notices the kachcha road that brought them there and the
one that leads back to the road from where they diverted.
RANVEER
This way.
They run towards it.
Fauji, Ashok and Ramotar chase them, but maintain a safe
distance.
39A

As they get closer, the darkness and the quietness of the 39A
wilderness make way for The sights and sounds of the road.
Vehicles. Headlights. Honkings.
Civilization. Or something like it.
Hope. Renewed.
Fauji looks worried.
FAUJI
Roko saalon ko.
EXT. ROAD - NIGHT
Ranveer and Meera reach the concrete road.
RANVEER
Try and stop someone.
He himself turns to point the gun towards Fauji and company.
They are forced to stop.
Meera rushes to the middle of the road.
An approaching truck.

44.

Meera frantically waves her arms.


The truck doesnt slow down. Instead - honks in protest.
Meera steps aside at the last moment. The truck whizzes past
her.
RANVEER
Stop someone, dammit.
MEERA
Im trying.
Ranveer has his eyes on the three men. And the darkness that
lies behind them.
And then, something emerges out of it. A pair of headlights.
Rattling towards them.
Its the Scorpio. Omi and Satbir in it.
The men too notice the light coming from behind. They move
aside.
The Scorpio goes straight towards Ranveer.
Not slowing down even as it gets closer and closer to the
road.
Ranveers face slowly register what theyre going for.
In panic - he fires.
The bullet skittles off the engine body harmlessly.
Another fire. This time, he gets the windshield, sending
cracks through it.
The vehicle still doesnt slow down. Its dangerously close
now.
RANVEER
MEERA... RUN!
He turns, takes Meeras hand and they cross the road.
The Scorpio does not slow down to check oncoming vehicles
even as it hits the road.
Omis almost like hes on a suicide mission.

45.

The two run to the other side, with the vehicle chasing them almost missing a side-on collission with an oncoming car on
the road.
Meera and Ranveer jump off into the fields on the other side.
The vehicle follows suit.
It flies off in the air and EXT. FIELDS OFF THE ROAD - NIGHT
- and lands with a thud.
It rattles for a bit but continues to come straight at them.
Up ahead of them - sugarcane fields.
Meera and Ranveer run towards them but - the vehicle is getting closer and closer.
Ranveer lets go of Meeras hand.
RANVEER
Go that way.
They run in separate directions.
The vehicles confused for a moment and then swerves
dangerously to follow Ranveer.
Fauji, Ashok and Ramotar have caught up by now and run in the
direction of Meera.
Meera heads into the sugarcane fields up ahead.
So does Ranveer.
The Scorpio follows him for a bit but is forced to stop when
the vegetation gets thicker.
Omi and Satbir step down. Satbir carries a torch light
whereas Omi has a pickaxe in his hands.
Theres a cold confidence about Omi as he follows Ranveer
into the farms. Ill get you, boy!
EXT. SUGARCANE FARMS - NIGHT
Meera runs through the sugarcane fields. In no particular
direction.

46.

She can hear feet chasing her. And the distant voices of the
men.
They are there somewhere. Closeby.
She stops. Looks around.
Just long sticks of sugarcane. And nothing else.
Shes on the verge of tears. Her lips moving almost
involuntarily in a muttered prayer MEERA
Ranveer. Find me. Find me, Ranveer.
She notices a figure. Is that Ranveer?
She moves cautiously towards him. A twig cracks under her
foot.
The figure hears. Turns.
Fuck. Its Fauji.
Meera ducks back.
But Fauji has sensed the presence.
He searches around. Beating down the crop with a long stick.
Meeras just there. Very close.
Faujis stick swings over her ducked head. Only just missing
her.
Meera remains crouched.
From the other side - Ashok and Ramotar.
Moving in. Closing in.
Meera. Crouched. Any moment theyre gonna spot her.
Finally they spot - but only one another.
RAMOTAR
Kinghaan ne gayi raand?
FAUJI
Bichalo mat re chutiyon. Phaiyl
jaao. (Dont fucking get confused.
Spread out.)

47.

They all move away in different directions as directed by


Fauji.
Meera remains crouched close to the ground for a bit. Then
gets up and runs away.
SOMEWHERE THERE:
Ranveer. Running.
Looking around. Looking lost. Looking worried.
He decides to risk it.
RANVEER
(screams)
MEERA! MEERA!
From afar, a torchlight immediately flashes in his general
direction.
Ranveer shuts up and ducks.
But they have spotted him and rush towards him.
Ranveer gets up and runs.
They chase him down like hounds.
Its a long while - and lots of deliberate zig-zags - before
Ranveer manages to make them lose his track.
Breathless, he stops when he just cant run any more.
Panting heavily, he checks his gun.
A single, lonely bullet left.
RANVEER
Fuck.
Just then - the sound of feet. Approaching him. From right in
front.
Ranveer tiredly cocks his gun and points it straight ahead.
The sound - getting nearer and nearer. Cautious.
Ranveers finger goes to the trigger, ready to press it.
Tortuous moments. Which come to an end when A figure emerges out of the sugarcane crop.

48.

Ranveer almost fires. Stops himself - mercifully - For its


Meera.
Frozen. First in fear. Then in relief.
Ranveer sighs. They hug hurriedly.
Listen. Its quiet.
They move quietly towards the edge of the field.
Out of nowhere - SWISH!
A knife lodges itself into the side of Ranveers abdomen.
Its Ashok.

Hes been waiting silently in ambush.

As they grapple, the gun drops out of Ranveers hands.


Ranveer clutches at Ashoks throat in desperation.
Ashok gives the knife a twist. Slow. Ruthless.
Crrrrunch! You can almost hear the insides being ripped
apart.
Meera screams. So does Ashok.
ASHOK
FAUJI! RAMOTAR!
Ranveer kicks the gun. Towards Meera.
It stops close to her feet.
She picks it up in a flash. Points it at Ashoks back.
Her finger closes in on the trigger. But Damn! She cant shoot.
She notices - Ranveers eyes on her. Do it!!
The approaching sound of running feet.
Meera realises her hands are shaking.
Ranveers eyes - now!
Meera presses the trigger several times.
Bang. Click. Click. Click. Only a single bullet gets fired.

49.

But its enough. Ashoks grip on the knife loosens and he


drops down.
A visibly shaken Meera has still not brought the gun down
when Ramotar appears there.
He stops as he sees the gun in Meeras hand.
There are no more bullets in it. Meera knows it. But shes
hoping Ramotar doesnt.
The two look into each others eyes for a long moment. The
first one to blink loses.
And then, she takes a step towards him. He takes a step back.
Thats it. Meera lets out a scream as she charges at him with
the gun.
Ramotar turns back and flees, shouting RAMOTAR
FAUJI!
Meera rushes to Ranveer as he drops down to his knees.
MEERA
Ranveer, you ok, baby?
Ranveer nods. Meera looks at the knife still lodged in his
abdomnen.
With trembling hands, she plucks it out. Ranveer screams.
Meera feels nauseated as she looks at it - its covered in
Ranveers blood and flesh.
She drops it like its pure evil.
Then doubles over and retches.
She recovers. Looks at Ranveer.
In his eyes - fear. Fear of death.
Something comes upon Meera. She takes his hand.
MEERA
Lets go.
She supports him as they disappear into the sugarcane crop.

50.

EXT. SUGARCANE FARMS - NIGHT


The vast, dense sugarcane field.
Four dots running through it.
Ramotar leads the others as they reach up to where Ashok lies
dead.
Omis eyes go to the bloodied knife. He picks it up. Cleans
it on his shirt sleeve.
OMI
Ghani door naa jaa paayenge.
Satbir flashes the torch light around.
The others follow him as he moves ahead.
Ramotar looks just a tad unsure as he follows the rest.
EXT. SUGARCANE FARMS - NIGHT
Meera supports a barely conscious Ranveer as they make their
way ahead.
The crop seems to be thinning and the field seems to be
coming to an end.
Ranveer halts.
Meera looks at him.
He shakes his head weakly.
RANVEER
I cant. I cant walk any more.
MEERA
Were there. See.
Ranveer clutches on to his wound and draws upon all his
strength.
They move ahead.
EXT. FIELDS NEAR RAILWAY TRACK - NIGHT
Ranveer and Meera emerge out of the sugarcane farms.
In the distance - a numbingly bright light. Rushing towards
them.

51.

Blinded and confused, Meera shields her eyes trying to make out
what it is.
Then - with a thundering roar an express train tears through the
night past them.
She realises theyre on a small dirt track running along a major
rail line.
MEERA
Aas paas koi toh gaon hoga... A
police station maybe... Bas wahaan
tak pahunch jaate Thud! Ranveer drops down on the ground.
Meera rushes to him. He looks weak. Exhausted.
Meera thinks. Makes a decision.
MEERA
Ranveer, baby, Im gonna go get
some help.
No response from Ranveer. Meera shakes him up.
Ranveer manages to mutter something incomprehensible.
She looks around. Spots.
A little culvert besides the track. A dry bed under it laden
with thick bushes. Almost spooky in the moonlight.
Meera helps Ranveer get up. Its difficult as his knees are
wobbly.
She helps him walk up to under the bridge. Makes him sit down
with his back to it.
She looks at him. Fights back her tears.
MEERA
Im gonna be back soon, ok? I
promise.
He can barely keep his eyes open now.
MEERA
And you promise that youll wait
for me here.
Ranveer nods ever so slightly.

52.

MEERA
You got some money on you?
No response. She checks his pockets. Nothing there.
Then her eyes fall upon his watch. The big fat designer
watch. A mans watch.
She takes it off.
Puts the gun in Ranveer's hands.
MEERA
If they find you, this will scare them
off. OK?
Her voice betrays the feeling that she doesnt quite believe it
herself.
She looks at Ranveer. Hes losing consciousness.
Meera shakes him up. Slaps him a few times lightly.
MEERA
RV. Sona mat. Wait for me, RV.
Listen. Listen to this.
(whispers in Tamil)
Well go home and make mad love till
the sun comes up. OK?
He lets out a weak smile. Just about manages to mutter RANVEER
My lucky day today?
This time, tears roll down her eyes.
She kisses him on the lips for a long moment.
She covers Ranveer under the bushes.
Wipes off her tears, turns and heads out.
As she emerges out of the bushes, walking along the rail
track, we notice whats on her wrist.
The mans watch. The time on it. Five past twelve.
Happy Birthday, Meera!

53.

INTERVAL
FADE IN:
EXT. TRACKS ABOVE UNDERPASS - NIGHT
The rail tracks.
A lone figure running along them.
Meera. Looking around. Not quite sure where she is going.
And then she spots - a glimmer of light in the distance - and
a dusty road going under the tracks, leading towards it.
Hope?
Meera stumbles down the steep muddy embankment.
She loses her balance and tumbles down. Lodging herself in a
thorny bush.
It rips through her shirt and her arm.
Meera yelps in pain.
Slowly pulls herself out.
EXT. DUSTY ROAD - NIGHT
She holds her arm as she runs on the dusty road, towards the
light, shouting MEERA
HELP!
No one in sight though.
As she gets closer, she realises its a small rest stop for
passers by. A tube light flickers over an inscription on the
wall Yeh aaramgah pathikon ki suvidha ke liye Belada gaon ki
sarpanch Shrimati Indori Devi ne banwaaya hai.
No one there at this time.
She curses. Then notices - a tap.
Meera runs up to it and gulps down some water thirstily.
As she is drinking - a strong approaching light hits her. And
the unmistakable sound of an approaching diesel engine.

54.

Meera turns sharply.


Its a jeep coming down the road.
She runs to the middle of the road and flails her arms about.
The vehicle slows down as it approaches her. Stops.
Meera cant see much past the headlight.
She runs up close.
MEERA
Please help. Police station Her words taper off as she looks at the men on the vehicle.
Faces. Partially covered in blankets. Rustic. Rough. Not
unlike the ones she has encountered earlier in the night.
Their eyes on - Her state. Her face. Her ripped shirt. Her
alienness.
On her face too - the fear of the alien.
She slowly backs off. And runs away in the direction opposite
to which the jeep is going.
An OLD MAN shouts out at her receding figure OLD MAN IN THE JEEP
(shouts out)
Ke ho gaya beti?
- but shes gone.
He murmurs sympathetically to the others OLD MAN IN THE JEEP
Chyondhi laag ri thi bichaari. (The
poor thing looked lost)
BACK WITH MEERA:
A tense Meera runs hard, looking back to ensure shes not
being followed.
She stops near a little canal.
Holds her head in despair. Looks around. Nowhere to go.
And then her eyes go to a signboard in Hindi.

55.

Beat Chowki No. 2. Gaon Belada. Thana Shivarsa. Haryana


Police.
And most importantly - an arrow that leads to it.
Meera cant believe her luck. She runs in the direction the
arrow is pointing at.
EXT. POLICE CHOWKI - NIGHT
A decrepit small structure. An old bicycle leans on the wall.
A solitary naked bulb hangs above it, attracting insects by
the dozens.
A breathless Meera reaches there running and heads straight
for the door.
She pushes at it. Only to find it locked from inside.
She knocks on it. Waits. No response.
She knocks harder, almost bangs on the door.
Some stirring inside. She continues to bang.
Finally the door opens.
A sleepy, MIDDLE AGED CONSTABLE in a dishevelled state.
Hes taken aback to see Meera. And embarassed.
Offers by way of explanation as he buttons his shirt CONSTABLE
Wo kuttey ghus jaate hain toh bandh
rakhna padta Meera of course has no time for this. Cuts him MEERA
Please help. Mera husband... hes
in danger. Please saath chaliye.
The Constable seems confused.
CONSTABLE
Ke baat ho gayi?
MEERA
Kuchh log... unhone humpe attack
kiya. Highway par. They...
(MORE)

56.
MEERA (CONT'D)
they stabbed my husband. Please
jaldi chaliye.

The Constable looks at her. Realises the seriousness of it.


CONSTABLE
Main saab ko phone karta hoon.
He goes in. Meera follows him in.
INT. POLICE CHOWKI - NIGHT
A dimly lit, depressing room. An old desk and a couple of
chairs. And A crumpled bedsheet and pillow on the floor. Confirmed - the
bugger was indeed sleeping before she came in.
The Constable rushes to the phone on the desk. Dials a
number.
Wait. Wait. Wait. He notices Meera looking at him
impatiently.
CONSTABLE
Ringing kar rya sa.
Some more wait, before a voice appears at the other end.
SUB INSPECTOR (O.S.)
Haan bol Dhulichand.
CONSTABLE
Janaab. Ek madam hain. English
type. Boley koi rolla raapda hoya
sa...
SUB INSPECTOR (O.S.)
Kathey?
CONSTABLE
(cups the phone)
Tam aa kahaan se rahe ho?
MEERA
Delhi.
CONSTABLE
(relays)
Dilli.

57.

SUB INSPECTOR (O.S.)


Dilli? Dilli mein hoya to hum ke
karengey?
CONSTABLE
Naa janaab. Aayi dilli se... kaand
inghe hoya... highway par. Hain
janaab?
(cups the phone again)
Highway ke is taraf ki parli taraf?
Meera has had enough of this confusion. She snatches the
phone from the Constables hand.
The Constable doesnt like it but lets it pass.
MEERA
Sir... please try and understand.
Hum Dilli se aa rahe the. Raaste
mein kuchh logon ne attack kiya.
They... they stabbed my husband.
(listens)
Nahi, mujhe nahi pata kaun log the.
Koi honour killing ka case hai. Ek
ladke aur ladki ko utha ke le gaye
dhaabe se...
The Constable looks at her sharply.
MEERA
(chokes)
Dono ko maar diya. Hamaare saamne.
Ladki ka naam shaayad...
The line gets disconnected before Meera could speak more.
She looks down at the phone. The constables finger is on the
cradle.
Meera looks at his tense face. Not quite understanding the
meaning of it.
MEERA
Phone... phone kyun kaata?
CONSTABLE
Tam jaao yehaan se.
MEERA
Kya hua?
CONSTABLE
Bola na. Jaao.

58.

The phone begins to ring. The Constable doesnt pick. Instead


looks at it like its a ticking bomb.
Meera tries to pick it up. The Constable pulls it away from
her.
MEERA
(pleads)
Sir, mere husband injured hai
wahaan. Aap please...
The Constable doesnt relent.
Meera looks about. Remembers - the watch on her wrist. Starts
to take it off.
MEERA
Aap... aap yeh le lijiye Sir.
Expensive hai. Do... Do lac.
The Constable looks at her gravely.
CONSTABLE
Jaao madam.
MEERA
Aap aise kaise kar sakte hain?
Aapka kaam hai help karna.
CONSTABLE
(shouts in frustration)
Arey naa karni help. Niklo yehan
se.
All this while, the damned phone continues to ring.
She snatches at the phone again. He dodges. A little game
ensues. Like how you fool around with a kid.
The Constable finally pulls the cable out of the phone.
Sudden silence.
Meera stares at the Constable for a bit. Angry. Helpless. On
the verge of tears.
MEERA
F...fuck you.
She storms out of there.
The Constable watches her go. Tense.
Then slams the phone back on the desk. Anxiety in his eyes.

59.

EXT. POLICE CHOWKI - NIGHT


Meera emerges out of the Chowki.
Looks around in despair. Spots the bicycle.
She kicks it in frustration, sending it down tumbling.
A dog barks somewhere closeby, startled by the sound.
Meera looks at the fallen bicycle.
EXT. DUSTY ROAD - NIGHT
The rickety cycle rattles down the dusty road.
Meera on it. Breathless. Tears running down her cheeks.
She crosses the rest house she had earlier stopped at. Still
no one there.
From up ahead in the distance - the jingling sound of a bell.
Meera tenses up as she cycles towards it - her eyes squinting in
nervous anticipation.
And then from the darkness emerges - A cow. An emaciated,
abandoned one, with a bell around its neck.
Meera cycles past it. She seems very low on hope at this point.
And just then - out of nowhere - headlights appear in the
distance. Coming towards her.
She slows down. Stops. The vehicle continues to come towards
her.
Meera realises - its a jeep. The same one as earlier?
She tenses up. Looks about nervously.
The jeeps almost there now. Meera strains hard for a better
view.
A sign on the jeep - Haryana Police.
It stops next to her. The young SUB INSPECTOR AHLAWAT gets
down.
He looks at Meera. Then at the cycle. Resists a smile.
SUB INSPECTOR
Phone pe aap hi thi, Madam?

60.

Meera lets out a huge sigh of relief.


EXT. DUSTY ROAD / POLICE JEEP - NIGHT
Meera tick-tocks her pen in nervous agitation as - the Sub Inspector drives while talking on his mobile.
SUB INSPECTOR
Madam mere saath hi hain. Hum abhi
andheriya gali se nikale hain.
Dhulichand... Dhulichand... manne
na sunna. Sab ko le ke rail patri
pe aa ja... Ganne ke khet waali
side.
He looks at Meera, to check if he is giving the right
directions.
She nods vigorously in approval.
The Sub Inspector cuts the phone and pockets it.
SUB INSPECTOR
Dhulichand aadmi maada nahi hai.
Aap please complaint mat karna.
Meera looks at him sharply.
MEERA
Police wala hai. Kuchh toh...
SUB INSPECTOR
Madam, police koi hawa mein toh
rehti nahi? Gaon mein hi rehti hai.
Biradari mein. Hukka paani band ho
jaata. Byaahne waale teen ladke
hain Dhulichand ke. Kaun beti deta?
Aise hi ladkiyaan nahi hain.
Meera still looks unconvinced.
SUB INSPECTOR
Achcha chalo. Aap apni caste
bataao.
MEERA
Huh?
MEERA
Iyer... Er, Puri. Wo shaadi ke baad...

61.

SUB INSPECTOR
Intercaste marriage?
MEERA
Jee?
The Sub Inspector smiles benignly.
SUB INSPECTOR
Waise Iyer, Puri... yeh sab toh
surname hai, Madam. Caste? Jaise
bramhan, baniya, jaat, gujjar, kurmi,
lohaar etcetra etcetra.
Meera seems clueless.
SUB INSPECTOR
Gotra toh fir ke hi pata hoga?
(beat)
Yo hi farak hai, Madam. Gaon mein
aap kisi 12 saal ke bachche ko rok
ke poochho. Jaat paat gaut patri
sab bata dega. Apni. Padosi ki.
A fork on the road. Meera points to the left.
Ahlawat takes it. They are getting closer to where she left
Ranveer.
SUB INSPECTOR
Manu padha hai aapne?
Meera doesnt reply. Her focus is on the road and the turns.
He continues irrespective.
SUB INSPECTOR
Bahot badey gyaani the. Jaise
Ambedkar saab. Jinhone Bharat ka
kaanoon banaaya. Ab Ambedkar saab
ne bola ki saari gaadiyaan left
side pe chalegi to chalti hain na?
Koi right pe chalegi to accident
toh hoga hi.
Meeras eyes scan the road anxiously. Theyre almost there.
And she wouldnt mind if hed shut up right now.
SUB INSPECTOR
Ab yeh Mukesh Pinky ka hi case lo.
Inko pata hai daada laahi ke
jamaane ka kaanoon hai. Koi nayi
baat to hai nahi. Par fir bhi inko
gotra mein hi byaahna hai. Galat
hai na?

62.

Something strikes Meera. We STAY ON her as the Sub Inspector


continues to jabber.
SUB INSPECTOR (O.S.)
Aap ko sun ke shock lag raha hoga,
Madam. Par Gurgaon ki aakhiri mall
jahaan khatam hoti hai, aapki yeh
democracy yeh constitution bhi wahin
khatam ho jaata hai. Yehaan bijli
paani nahi pahonchta, bhonsadi ka
constitution kahaan se pahonchega. Par
nibha rahe hain na yeh log. Inki do
maheene ki dihaadi se aapke jootey tak
nahi aayenge. Yeh log toh naa karte
protest mombatti jalaa ke. Caste
system ka shukar hai ki bikhre pade
hain saaley. Nahi toh bhasad mach
jaayegi.
(beat)
Aage se...?
Theyve reached the underpass where Meera stumbled down the
slope.
No response from Meera.
He looks at her. Her face seems to have gone pale.
SUB INSPECTOR
Madam? Kya hua?
MEERA
Huh? Shaayad galat aa gaye.
The Sub Inspector stares at her for a bit.
And then - Brakes hard.
Silence. Just the sound of crickets.
Meera looks at him. Scared. Trying to cover.
MEERA
Sab ek jaisa hi... Raat ke waqt
woh...
A long moment passes, before Ahlawat smiles at her.
SUB INSPECTOR
Mhaare se mistake ho gayi, na? Aap
ne hamein Mukesh Pinky ka naam kab
bataaya?
She notices his gaze going to the rear view mirror.

63.

Headlights approaching them. Coming nearer and nearer.


Fuck. Its the Scorpio.
She moves to get out. The Sub Inspector grabs her hand. Hard.
Smiles.
SUB INSPECTOR
Dhulichand bechaara theek salaah de
raha tha.
His words are cut short by a swing of Meeras other arm.
Primal. Reflexive. Unexpected.
Something lodges itself into the Sub Inspectors eye. The
ball point pen.
For a while, nothing happens. Ahlawats trembling hand goes
to pluck it out of his eye.
A fountain of blood gushes out and splatters on to the
windshield. And on Meeras face.
Leaving her frozen. In horror.
Till - Ahlawat drops dead on the steering wheel.
Paaaaaaaaaiiiiiiiinnnnnn...
The car horn pierces through the stillness of the night. And
through Meeras shell-shockedness.
She looks in the rear view mirror.
Two images in it. One is of her face - generously sprayed
with blood. And the other is of the men emerging out of the
Scorpio.
Meera pushes Ahlawats body out of the jeep. And slips into
the drivers seat.
She barely manages to drive away before Fauji and Omi reach
the jeep.
The men cling to the jeep for a bit but she eventually shakes
them off.
The Scorpio - driven by Satbir - catches up. The two men
in to it.

hop

Meera cant see clearly. The windshield has blood all over
it.

64.

She tries to wipe it off. Only making it worse.


EXT. DUST ROAD NEAR RAIL TRACKS - NIGHT
The jeep tears down the dirt road.
The Scorpio follows suit in hot pursuit.
Up ahead - the little bridge with a thick bushy overgrowth under
it. Where she left Ranveer.
Meeras eyes are on it. Shes headed towards it.
But a quick glance at the Scorpio and she changes her mind. She
swerves the jeep a hard ninety degrees and steers it away from
the spot where she had left Ranveer.
EXT. FIELDS - NIGHT
The fencing of a farm.
The jeep crashes through the barbed wire and enters the farm.
The Scorpio follows it, chasing it like a hound.
EXT. DUSTY ROAD BY THE CANAL - NIGHT
Meera notices - right in front of her - a canal. And a dusty
track by it.
She swerves and puts the car onto it.
The Scorpio follows the jeep as they drive alongside the
canal. Getting closer...and closer...and then Satbir turns sharply and bangs into the jeep from the side.
Meeras almost thrown out of the jeep from the impact. But
manages to recover.
She tries to steer away but the Scorpio follows her, going
for another bang.
She now realises what Satbir is trying to do - to push her
towards the canal waters, thus boxing her in.
She tries to crank up some speed but theres only so much an
old rickety government vehicle can do.
Satbir bangs into her again.

65.

Meera swerves and shes now riding pretty much alongside the
edge of the canal.
She panics. Just a few feet separating her from the slope.
She sees the Scorpio coming towards her ominously. Shes
gonna go down for sure if it hits her this time.
The Scorpio barges in, but at the last minute, Meera brakes
hard.
The incoming Scorpio swerves but misses her. Recovers and
takes a sharp u-turn to come back at her.
Meera jumps down from her vehicle.
Looks at the Scorpio coming straight at her. With the clear
intention of ramming her down.
She then looks at the canal waters. And the lights on the
other side.
Meera takes a few steps back. Then runs in to gain momentum.
And jumps.
SPLASH! She hits the cold water of the canal.
The Scorpio screeches to a stop. The men seem surprised at
her perseverance.
They get down. Watch her swim away.
She turns to look at them.
An animated discussion going on. Post which Omi and Ramotar run towards the field.
Looking around for someone. For Ranveer.
And then she hears two SPLASHES, one after another.
Satbir and Fauji. Into the waters. Following her.
EXT. CANAL WATERS / CANAL BANK - NIGHT
The moon reflects in the clear waters. Before being dispersed
away by the ripples.
Meera. Strong, rhythmic movements.

66.

For the first time in hours, she seems calm and focussed.
Almost like shes practising a hard lap in the pool.
Fauji and Satbir are not too far behind, though Meera seems
to be pulling away from them with every yard.
But theres only so much distance to cover.
Meera reaches the other end. Steps out of the waters.
Soaking wet. Cold. Shivering.
She turns to throw a look at Fauji and Satbir. They still
have half the distance to go.
They too stop as they see her standing on the bank looking at
them.
Their eyes meet. The hunter and the hunted.
With her eyes still on them, Meera takes off her wet squishy
shoes. Throws them away.
As Fauji and Satbir resume their swimming Meera turns and makes a dash out of there.
EXT. ROAD LEADING TO THE VILLAGE - NIGHT
Two bare feet. Running on the little uneven road.
On one side of her is the canal. On the other side - acres of
farms.
She comes across a bridge that runs over the canal.
Tired. Breathless. She stops. Looks around.
In the far distance - a cluster of lights. A village
probably.
The bridge or the village? She makes her choice. Heads
straight ahead - to the village.
57A

She hobbles further alongside the farms.

57A

Crops. Crops. And more crops.


Until she spots in the far distance A chimney.
Tall. Industrial. Surely, theres gotta be somebody there!

67.

Meera limps towards it.


EXT. BRICK KILN - NIGHT
A dusty path leads her to rows and rows of stacked underproduction bricks. Almost like a maze.
MEERA
(shouts)
Hello?
No response.
As Meera stands looking around and regaining her breath - her eyes go to the dusty path she just took.
Two figures come running down on it.
Meera ducks between two rows.
And waits.
The footsteps coming nearer and nearer.
And then - she hears their voices.
FAUJI (O.S.)
Isi taraf aayi thi.
Meera peeps through the little space between bricks.
There they are. Fauji and Satbir.
SATBIR
Tu udhar dekh.
Fauji runs in the direction.
Satbir looks around. Feels something.
Turns to look straight at the hole Meera was peeping from.
Meera ducks. Just in time.
Crouched - she can see Satbirs feet approaching the stack of
bricks.
Still crouched - she scurries away towards the end of the row.
Just as - Satbir hits the row of bricks sending a portion
crashing down.

68.

Satbir peeps in now. Nope, she isnt there.


Instead, shes on his side of the row. If only he would look
back.
But he doesnt.
As Satbir pulls himself back, Meera ducks back towards the other
side of the row.
She sees - Fauji coming running towards them.
FAUJI
Ke hoya? Aawaaj ke thi?
Still crouched - Meera gets out of there and rushes towards the
kiln area - where the chimney is.
58A

KILN AREA:

58A

Meera reaches the kiln. Nothing much there to hide in. And heck,
only one entrance or exit.
Meera decides to turn back but seems like the two are coming
just in her direction.
Damn. No way out.
She runs into the circular area.
Fauji and Satbir. Coming nearer and nearer.
And then they enter the area.
They look around. Run in separate directions.
Sure shes gonna be caught now.
But - shes nowhere to be seen. They converge again.
Just a couple of feet away from them - shes hiding inside a
little dark alcove.
But - They do not see her.
They run out in frustration.
Meera waits for a while. Then steps out.
58B

OUTSIDE THE KILN:

58B

Meera emerges. Looks around nervously. They are nowhere to be


seen.

69.

She spots - a rough brick hutment.


Meera runs towards it.
EXT. / INT. BRICK KILN, CABIN - NIGHT
Bang. Bang. Bang. Meera on the door.
VOICE FROM INSIDE (O.S.)
K... kaun? Kaun hai?
Meera continues to bang.
Finally - a light comes up outside.
And the door opens tentatively.
A man - THE MIGRANT - wearing only a lungi stands there.
Behind him - a charpaayi from which a sleepy WOMAN peeps out
from under a thick blanket.
Meera barges in. Shuts the door.
MEERA
Bhaiyya... please help karo... wo...
wo log...
EXT. BRICK KILN - NIGHT
Fauji and Satbir. Heading away.
Fauji feels something. Stops.
Satbir looks at him.
Faujis eyes are on the the hutment in the distance. The bulb
glowing outside it.
EXT. / INT. BRICK KILN, CABIN - NIGHT
Meera finishes up her pleadings.
MEERA
...please kuchh help kijiye.
The Migrant and his wife look at each other.
Just then Bang! Bang! Bang!

70.

SATBIR (O.S.)
O! Ahn Re!
Meera panics. So does the Migrant.
His eyes travel to his wife. She seems to be pleading with her
eyes.
The Migrant makes a decision. Takes Meeras hand. Leads her to
the chaarpaayi.
Meera looks at him quizzically. He signals her to get in. Under
the thick blanket. Next to the woman.
Meeras unsure. But the woman pulls her in.
Pulls the blanket over them - just as the Migrant opens the door.
Fauji and Satbir barge in like they own the place.
BIHARI MIGRANT
K...kaun? Kya hua?
SATBIR
O Bihari! Koi lugaayi aayi ke?
BIHARI MIGRANT
Koi nahi aaya hian toh. Bas aap du log
aaye hain.
FAUJI
Batti kaise on hui baahar ki?
BIHARI MIGRANT
Woh... pesaab ke liye gaye the.
Fauji looks at him. Then looks around.
Nothing in the room that can hide anyone. Except - the bed. The
bump under the blanket. Someones there for sure.
He heads for it.
The Migrant steps up. Like blocking him.
Fauji glares at him. The Migrant looks back with a funny mix of
confrontation and pleading.
BIHARI MIGRANT
Mehraru hai maalik.

71.

Faujis about to make a move but Satbir puts a hand over his
shoulder.
Fauji turns to look back at Satbir.
Satbir nods. Let it be!
Fauji ignores him. Pushes the Migrant aside and walks up to the
chaarpaayi.
Just before he can pull at the blanket - someone sits up on the chaarpaayi.
The Migrants wife. Looking at Fauji with hateful eyes.
Fauji glares at her before heading out of there. Satbir follows
him.
Silence again.
The woman turns the blanket over.
Crouched around the lower half - Meera.
BIHARI MIGRANT
Pul ke us taraf thana hai.
Meera steps out.
MEERA
Police mili hui hai. Gaon mein koi...?
BIHARI MIGRANT
Sarpanch hoga. Unke paas jaaiye.
MEERA
Aap le chalenge?
The Migrant looks at her. Unsure. Then looks down. Kinda
ashamed.
Meera gets her answer. She rushes towards the door.
The Migrant follows her. Points towards a direction. Go this
way!
Meera heads out. Turns back one last time to look at him.
BIHARI MIGRANT
Hum baahar waale hain, Madam.
Meera nods at him. I understand.

72.

Runs away.
EXT. VILLAGE OUTSKIRTS / ALLEYS - NIGHT
Meera emerges out of the bushes to reach the outskirts of the
village.
A solitary dog sniffs her coming. It follows her, cautiously.
Meera ignores it. Too tired to even shoo him away.
62A

AN ALLEY:

62A

With a hand-painted advertisement for an abortion clinic.


Painless. Done by machines. Rupees 350 only.
Meera dodders past it.
62B

Towards the first house.

62B

Bangs on the door. Hard. Then harder.


No response.
Her eyes go to the top of the door. A lock hangs there.
She staggers up to the second house.
Hell, its locked too.
Where the fuck is everybody?
A sound floats up to her ears. The sound of live music.
Intrigued, Meera runs towards it.
EXT. PRIMARY SCHOOL, GROUND - NIGHT
A small make-shift stage in the middle of the school
playground.
A traditional Swang being performed by an all male crew,
including a few cross-dressers.
In which Savitri saves Satyavan from the clutches of death...
63A

Beyond the boundary wall:


Meera. Her droopy eyes scan the crowd.

63A

73.

About a hundred people. Mostly boisterous men. Only a small


group of veiled village women who sit huddled together in a
corner.
Meera stands evaluating her move when - she hears a giggle a little away from her.
She freezes in fear for a moment. Then turns slowly.
Just TWO LITTLE BOYS pissing on the school-wall, crossing
streams like only little boys do.
With relief, Meera runs up to them.
MEERA
Beta. Suno. Mujhe sarpanch ji ke
ghar le chaloge?
The two boys - KAMLESH and PAPPU - look at each other. They
seem unsure as they finish up and turn to her.
MEERA
Please, beta.
PAPPU
Is ka ghar hai. Gaya to waapas na
aan denge.
Meeras face lights up. Hope.
MEERA
Tum... tum sarpanch ji ke...?
PAPPU
Pota hai unka.
MEERA
Please... please apne ghar le
chalo...
A roar of approval from the crowd O.S. Enough to get the
attention of the boys diverted to the stage.
ON STAGE:
A CLOWN appears and starts regaling the crowd with his
antics. He points to someone in the crowd.
MAKHAULIYA
Wo dekh. Savitri ka naam sunte
Chaudhri khada hogya. Baith jaa
Tau.
(MORE)

74.
MAKHAULIYA (CONT'D)
Thaare khaatar koyi Savitri konya
bachi. Inghe to saare randwe
Satyavan hi sa.

The crowd laughs at the expense of an old man the clown is


pointing at.
Too much fun for the boys to miss. Pappu runs away from
there, shouting PAPPU
Makhauliya aa gya.
Kamlesh makes a move too but Meera clutches on to his hand in
desperation.
Kamlesh struggles to get out of her grip, but she wont let
go. In the tussle, the boys eyes go to the watch on Meeras
wrist.
He stops squirming. Meera notices it.
EXT. VILLAGE ALLEYS - NIGHT
Two pair of feet running. One without shoes. The other with
shoes that have flashing lights in them.
Meera and Kamlesh.
Kamlesh fiddles with the watch on his wrist even as he runs.
He slows down. Stops. Meera catches up to him, trying hard to
regain her breath.
KAMLESH
Isme light nahi hai kya?
Meera. Exhausted. Exasperated.
She takes his hand and drags him along.
KAMLESH
(disappointed)
Mere to joote mein bhi light hai.
64A

He resumes his run. Meera now finds it difficult to keep 64A


pace with him.
INT. SARPANCH HOUSE, ROOM - NIGHT
Almirahs. Cupboards. Being emptied out.

75.

Cartons. Trunks. Packed. Being packed.


AMMAJI, the weathered matriarch, picks up the last pile of
clothing from an almirah and dumps them into a trunk.
Moving house, perhaps?
AMMAJI
Peti bandh kar ke side laga de.
BHUMIA, the timid dusky girl in her early 20s, does as told.
Shes a little out of place. In an urban setting - shed be
one of those domestic helps from the East.
A tired Ammaji shuts the almirah. On the life-size almirah
mirror - old stickers.
Mickey Mouse. Barbie. Pink hearts. Memories.
Ammaji looks at them for a long time. Sad. Nostalgic.
Something comes upon her. She starts taking them off.
The damned things wont come off so easily. But she seems
determined, almost obsessed.
Trrrrrrrr. O.S., the doorbell rings rather sharply.
No reaction from Ammaji as she continues with her task.
Scrub. Scrub. Scrub. Scrub.
Trrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Longer this time.
Bhumia looks at Ammaji. Then walks up to her to touch her arm
gently.
Ammaji, almost startled, turns to look at Bhumia.
Bhumias reply is a mix of shout and gestures - the way youd
talk to hearing-impaired folks.
BHUMIA
Koi aaya hai. Baahar.
We were right. Her accents definitely East.
A long moment passes. Ammaji chokes back a tear before
nodding at her.
AMMAJI
Mhaari machine dekh kathey rakhi
sa.

76.

EXT. SARPANCH HOUSE, COURTYARD - NIGHT


An old but rural-prosperous house. The courtyard with the
private well a proof of that.
The old matriarch slowly walks past it and opens the door.
Kamlesh there.
AMMAJI
Chhorey tanne manaa karya tha na
jaane se?
KAMLESH
(shouts)
Koi milne aaya hai.
AMMAJI
Kaun?
Kamlesh looks behind in the dark alley. Ammajis eyes follow
his gaze.
Meera emerges from the darkness. Legs wobbly. Barely managing
to make those last yards.
AMMAJI
Kaun sa?
Kamlesh shrugs.
KAMLESH
Boli thaare se kaam tha.
Meera reaches there. Looks at Ammaji and then at Kamlesh with
woolly eyes.
MEERA
Sarpanch ji?
KAMLESH
Arey yehi to hai Sarpanch ji.
Meera. Surprised. Relieved. Just about manages to mutter MEERA
Mera husband... please woh...
Please...
- before the night finally takes its toll on her. She passes
out in a dead faint.
Ammaji holds her as she falls.

77.

AMMAJI
Beti? Ke hoya?
No reply from Meera. Ammaji looks at her with worry.
AMMAJI
(shouts out)
Bhumia!
66A

BACK IN THE ROOM:

66A

Bhumia looks about around the bed.


There it is. Under the pillow. A hearing aid.
Just then, she hears AMMAJI (O.S.)
Bhumia!
BHUMIA
(shouts back)
MIL GAYI, AMMAJI.
She picks up the hearing aid and rushes out.
66B

IN THE COURTYARD:

66B

Bhumia emerges into the courtyard. Surprised to see Meera in


Ammajis arms.
She helps Ammaji carry Meera into the house as Kamlesh
follows them excitedly.
INT. SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
They help Meera on a bed. Shes still unconscious.
AMMAJI
Bechari daredi sa. (Poor thing
looks scared)
(to Kamlesh)
Jaa paani le kar aa.
But Kamleshs attention has been snapped up by all the packedunpacked boxes. He digs into one.
Finds something. Picks it up.
KAMLESH
Bua kahin jaa rahi hai?
Bhumia turns to give him a reprimanding glare. Do as told.

78.

He makes a face. Dumps what hes holding back into the carton
as he leaves.
Its a photoframe. A girl we know. But in happier times.
Fuck. Its Pinky.
Kamlesh comes back with a jug of water.
Ammaji splashes some on Meeras face.
Meera slowly revives, although just about.
AMMAJI
Beti tu theek sa? Ke baat ho gayi?
MEERA
Hum dilli se aa rahe the. Raaste
mein kuchh log ek ladka ladki ko...
Meera continues but we see the rest of it from Ammajis POV:
She just sees Meeras mouth opening and closing. All that she
can hear is a faint, incoherent voice.
Ammaji turns to Bhumia irritatedly.
AMMAJI
Machine kathey sa mhaari?
Bhumia. Ashen faced. Stares at Meera in disbelief.
She has heard. She knows. Only we notice - the hearing aid
that she discreetly hides in her fist.
Ammaji shakes her up.
AMMAJI
Machine?
As Kamlesh giggles somewhere in the bg, Bhumia recovers.
Looks at Ammaji.
BHUMIA
Huh? Mili nahi.
SLAP. Sudden. Hard.
Bhumia falls down from the edge of the bed and onto the
ground.

79.

AMMAJI
Ek kaam na hota raand sa.
Meera - taken aback. Looks at Ammaji with surprise.
Ammajis angry eyes are on Bhumia though - still lying on the
ground. And then she notices - her closed fist. And something
peeking out of it.
With suspicion, she walks up to Bhumia.
Bhumia offers no resistance as Ammaji opens up her fist.
There it is - the hearing aid.
Ammaji picks it up and puts it in her ear - her eyes on
Bhumia all the time.
As her hand moves to hit Bhumia another time MEERA
Please Aunty... Mera husband
injured hai... Please mere saath
chaliye. Wo mar jaayega, Aunty...
Ammaji stops. Looks at Meera. Then back at Bhumia.
And then - realization dawns on her.
She starts backing off from the room.
Meera doesnt quite understand this.
MEERA
Aunty?
Ammaji takes Kamlesh by the hand and storms out - making sure to bolt the door from outside.
Meera looks at Bhumia questioningly. What just happened?
Bhumias defeated eyes are fixated on a cushion.
Meera follows her gaze.
On the cushion. Amateur embroidery. A flower. And a name.
Pinky.
Meera. Realization. Shock.
MEERA
Fuck.

80.

EXT. SARPANCH HOUSE, COURTYARD - NIGHT


Ammaji dials a number from her mobile phone. Satbirs.
Its unreachable.
She cuts it. Curses.
BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!
The doors being banged from inside. Loud. Incessant.
Ammaji ignores it. Dials another number. Omi.
AMMAJI
Omi. Satbir kathey sa?
She tries hard to listen to Omi. The bangings making it
tough for her.
She shouts, first at the shut door AMMAJI
Chup kar jaa raand.
And then at the phone AMMAJI
Ghar aao saare. Ibbe ke ibbe.
She cuts the phone. The banging seems to have stopped.
But only for a moment. As next we hear a much louder THUD!
INT. SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
Meera lies on the floor, next to the door.
She struggles to pick herself up.
Then walks back to the other end of the room.
And then comes running in.
Right into the door.
THUD!
She falls down again with the impact.
Hurt. Spent.

81.

She notices Bhumia - still sitting on the floor. Exactly


where Ammaji left her.
Bhumia looks at her. Smiles wryly.
BHUMIA
Main toh khud aath saal mein nahi
nikal paayi.
Meera lifts herself up.
MEERA
Tum yahan kaam karti ho?
BHUMIA
Bihayi hun. Pachchees hajaar mein
khareede. Bahot the mere baap ke
liye.
Meera looks at her.
Hopelessness in her eyes.
It deflates Meera. For a moment. But she recovers.
Runs right into the door. Thud.
Shes not giving up without a fight.
EXT. SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
Ammaji paces up and down the courtyard.
Another THUD. She looks at the door. It seems to be holding
up so far.
The sound of an approaching vehicle outside in the lane.
Ammaji looks at the gates in anticipation.
SCREECH! The Scorpio comes to a stop right outside.
Satbir, followed by the rest, jump out and barge in.
Satbir stops as he notices Ammaji glaring at him.
AMMAJI
Phone kyun na laag rya tha thaara?
SATBIR
Wo... paani ma bheej gya.

82.

AMMAJI
Aur jey yaa nikal jaati tey ke
karta?
SATBIR
Sab control ma sa Amma.
Ammaji slaps him hard.
Leaving him stunned. Embarassed.
AMMAJI
Gaye cheh. Paachhe aaye chaar. Yo
control sa thaara?
She glares daggers at him. The other men hover around
nervously.
A long, tense moment.
Until - another THUD.
AMMAJI
(screams)
Rrr chup karaao isne koi.
The men - almost relieved - spurt into action. Rush to the
door.
INT. SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
Meera on the floor. Trying hard to pick herself up again.
Just then, the door opens.
And the men she evaded all night enter.
A sullen Satbir goes straight for her.
Kicks her in the gut as she is trying to get up.
Meera goes crashing into one of the packed cartons. It
topples over.
Knick-knacks. Trinkets. A dead girls memoribilia.
Satbir catches hold of Meeras hair while Fauji slaps her hard. Again. And again. And again.
Meera almost passes out.
Satbir drags her out by the hair -

83.

EXT. SARPANCH HOUSE, COURTYARD - NIGHT


- and throws her in the courtyard, near Ammajis chair.
AMMAJI
Thaari lugaayi. Usne bhi le ke aa.
Satbir and Fauji go back in.
Sounds of more beatings. And Bhumias cries.
Meera opens her eyes. Ammaji stares at her.
AMMAJI
Mhaare private matter ka tamasha
bana diya tune.
But Meeras eyes are on someone else. Behind Ammaji Kamlesh. Near the wall of the well. Watching all the action
with a kids curiosity.
Meera pulls herself up with all her strength.
Ammaji gets up to grab her arm.
Meera sinks her teeth into Ammajis hand.
Hard. So hard that blood oozes out from it.
Ammaji screams. Lets go of Meeras hand.
Omi and Ramotar notice. Run towards her.
Meera pushes Ammaji into them, blocking their way.
And heads straight for Kamlesh.
Omi and Ramotar recover. Go after her. But freeze as they see
something.
Satbir and Fauji emerge out of the room, pulling Bhumia
along. And they freeze too.
Meera. Blood on her mouth.
She holds Kamlesh precariously over the well. His body
dangles over the edge, being held only by Meeras hands.
If she lets go...
Bhumia shrieks and makes a move towards Meera.
Meera shouts back at her.

84.

MEERA
In ko bolo gaadi ki chaabi de.
Bhumia grabs Satbir by the collar - surprising him.
BHUMIA
Chaabi.
(shouts)
Chaabi de.
Satbir looks at Ammaji. She nods.
He gives Bhumia the key. She slides them over the ground
towards Meera.
MEERA
Inko bolo kamre mein jaaye.
Nobody moves.
Meera releases one arm of Kamlesh. He lets out a wild cry as
his body dangles dangerously over the well.
AMMAJI
(screams)
Chhore na chhod de.
MEERA
Andar jaao saare.
Ammaji relents. Makes a move. They all follow her. Including
Bhumia.
MEERA
Tum nahi.
Bhumia stops to look at her.
MEERA
Darwaza band karo.
The rest go in as Bhumia shuts the door.
But shes still standing by it.
MEERA
(tentative)
Darwaze se door jaao.
Bhumia moves away.
Bhumia and Meera. Their eyes meet.Meera pulls Kamlesh up and
puts him down.

85.

He rushes straight into Bhumias arms.


Meera nods at her before picking the car keys and running
out.
EXT. LANE OUTSIDE SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
The Scorpio parked right at the gates.
Meera jumps into it. Fumbles with the keys. Damn, those shaky
hands!
She finally manages to start the car.
And with bare feet, drives it away.
EXT. VILLAGE, VARIOUS - NIGHT
Meera drives through the village lanes...
74A

...past the abortion clinic advertisement...

74A

74B

...past the school where the troupe sings a lilting Ragini...


74B
... past the tenement of the Migrant.- TO EDIT
Her eyes on the rear view mirror all the time.
Nope, no ones coming after her.
EXT. BRIDGE ON THE CANAL - NIGHT
Meera reaches the road that runs alongside the canal.
Up ahead - the fork. To her left is the bridge.
She swings the vehicle towards the bridge.
She feels something. Something touching her bare feet.
She looks down.
Warm. Sticky. Liquid.
Blood. Coming from the back of the car.
She brakes hard. The vehicle comes to a screeching stop.
For a while, Meera remains seated like she was. Too afraid to
look back.

86.

Finally, she does.


There he is on the floor of the car.
Ranveer. Bloodied. Tortured. Dead.
Meera stares at the body for a long time before turning back
straight.
Moments pass.
Silent. Excruciating.
And then Meera hits the steering hard as she lets out a scream.
We only see her screaming. What we hear is the car horn.
The lone car on the bridge. The silently flowing canal waters
below. And the scream of the horn.
It stops only after a long while.
Then the car starts again. And resumes the drive.
Alright, shes going to go away. Yup, thats all she can do.
Drive away. Away from the madness. Back to civilization.
Or, maybe not.
The car drives past the bridge and as soon as it reaches the
other side, it takes a vicious turn.
A U-turn.
Fuck em. Shes coming back. Fuck em all.
EXT. SARPANCH HOUSE, COURTYARD - NIGHT
The doors being banged from inside. O.S. shouts and threats
being hurled from inside.
Bhumia consoles Kamlesh as she sits in the courtyard.
Defiant. Her eyes on the shaking door.
And then - it breaks open.
Omi and Fauji jump out, followed by the rest. They head out
into the lane.
Satbir and Ammaji heads straight towards Bhumia.

87.

She doesnt flinch.


Ammaji pulls Kamlesh away from her lap.
Satbir kicks her straight in the chest. She falls back. Her
forehead hits the ground. Hard.
A trickle of blood emerges from Bhumias forehead as she
stares into nothingness.
Ammaji picks up a stick as she shouts at Satbir AMMAJI
Isne main dekh lyungi. Tu jaa
dhoondh usne.
Satbir runs out, shouting SATBIR
Fauji, Girdhari ki motorcycle le
kar aa...
EXT. LANE OUTSIDE SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
A restless Satbir shouts instructions at Fauji who disappears
into the dark alley.
From the same darkness, Ramotar emerges. Riding a motorcycle.
Omi hops on to it. He has an iron rod in his hands.
SATBIR
(to Omi)
Nikal, nikal.
(shouts)
FAUJI! Chal.
Just then, headlights appear in the lane.
A vehicle. Coming towards them.
They try to look past the blinding headlights.
The vehicle continues to come rattling towards them.
Finally they see her.
Surprise. That shes coming back.
Realisation. That shes coming right at them.

88.

Its a visual we have seen before. Meera in a car. Men on a


motorcycle. Meera not having enough courage to mow down the
bike. That was then.
This time, Meera heads straight into the men.
The men realize her intention. At the last moment, they jump
back.
Except for Ramotar. Too late to react.
WHAM! Blown away by the car.
Meera stops the car. Reverses it.
Omi and Satbir. Look at each other.
Grrr. Grrr. The engine growls at them.
Meera puts it in gear and heads for them.
They run.
EXT. VILLAGE ALLEYS - NIGHT
The narrow village lanes.
Feet. Tires.
Nervous eyes. Angry headlights.
The car continues to be on their tail doggedly.
Two lanes ahead. Omi and Satbir split.
Meera goes after Omi.
More chase. The lanes are getting even narrower and the car
scrapes against the walls a few times as it swerves around
those curves.
Omi runs. The iron rod still in his hands.
He takes another turn. Stops.
Oops. Its a dead end.
The sound of the car engine. Its almost there.
Omi runs again. Only till the wall ahead will let him.
The car turns. It now faces Omi.

89.

A moment between the two as they look into each others eyes.
Omi grips the rod tightly in his hands.
Meera puts on her seat belt.
And then goes for a head on.
Into the wall.
Into Omi.
CRASH!
SPLASH! Blood all over the windshield.
Meera. Jolted. Recovers.
Tries turning the engine on. It wont.
She steps down.
Blood splattered all over the wall. Omi splattered all over
the bonnet.
Meera yanks the rod out of Omis hand.
78A

Walks back down the road. Barefeet.

78A

Leaving behind a trail of footmarks. The colour - blood red.


She reaches the turn.
Sound of a motorcycle coming her way.
Meera takes a step back. Into the darkness by the wall.
Waits. Waits. Waits.
The motorcycle - coming nearer and nearer.
Meera tightens her grip on the rod.
Just when she feels it is real close, Meera swings her rod.
It finds Fauji on the head.
The bike swerves. Hits Meera on the leg, before Fauji & Satbir go down crashing with it.
Meera on the ground. The iron rod lies a few feet away from
her.

90.

She gets up with some effort. Drags herself to the rod. Picks
it up.
She looks at Fauji.
He lies pinned under the bike. A trickle of blood runs down
his temple on to his cheeks.
Meera hobbles up to him as Fauji tries to wriggle out. Yelps in pain.
Meera looks at him. He doesnt seem all that macho any more.
She swings the iron rod.
Whack! Whack! Whack! Whack! Whack!
Just a little away:
Satbir lies on the ground, watching this with shock and horror
in his eyes. He tries to get up and collapses back. Something
fractured there for sure.
Meera looks at him. Then slumps to the ground. Tired - so
tired.
She sits there on her haunches, propped against the wall.
The moment stretches - the two of them in silence.
Satbir starts to crawl away from there. Painfully slow.
On the ground - a packet of cigarettes that has fallen out of
Faujis pocket.
Meera reaches out for it. Lights one with shaking hands. She
takes a deep drag and then struggles to stand up.
78B

She follows Satbir down the lane. Limping, the rod dragging
78B
behind her. The cigarette hanging from her lips.
The hunter. The hunted. Roles reversed.
As she reaches up to him, she swings the rod.
It hits Satbir on the back of his head.
A thick gush of blood bursts out from there as Satbir hits
the ground face down.
He tries to drag himself away.
She steps over him - blocking his way.

91.

He looks up.
Meera takes the rod and shoves it in his mouth. Hard.
She twists it. Harder. Then some more.
A croak escapes his throat.
And his neck swings to a side. Lifeless.
Meera looks at it with cold detatched eyes.
And then stubs the cigarette out.
EXT. LANE OUTSIDE SARPANCH HOUSE - NIGHT
Ammaji nervously paces up and down outside her house.
A silhouette appears in the dark alley.
Ammaji peers hard.
AMMAJI
Satbir?
No response. Just a sharp sound. Metal being dragged on
concrete.
AMMAJI
Fauji?
The silhouette emerges out of the darkness.
Meera. Covered in blood. Limping. Dragging the iron rod
behind her.
Ammaji freezes.
Then rushes back inside the house. Tries to shut the doors.
Meera jams the iron rod in between the doors.
Ammaji tries to push. Meera pushes back. That much harder.
The door flies open, sending the matriarch tumbling down with
the impact.
EXT. SARPANCH HOUSE, COURTYARD - NIGHT
Meera steps in.
Ammaji. On the ground. Cowering in fear.

92.

Meera walks up to her. About to swing.


But stops. Looks at Ammaji.
AMMAJI
Beti thi wo mhaari. Par jo karna hai
so karna hai.
At that moment - she looks like an old, helpless woman.
Meera seems to be changing her mind.
But then, her eyes go to Bhumia sitting in a corner. Bruised.
Battered. Hopeless.
Bhumia looks up. Straight into Meeras eyes.
Meera looks back at Ammaji.
MEERA
Jo karna hai so karna hai.
Whack! Meera swings the rod.
Ammaji goes down like a dead tree. Without a word.
Silence.
Until the iron rod drops from Meeras hand and hits the
ground.
THE WELL:
Splash! A bucket hits the water.
Bhumia pulls it out. Puts it in front of Meera.
A dazed Meera looks at it for a long time.
Then empties it over herself.
EXT. HIGHWAY / MOVING BUS - DAWN
The sun is just about rising in the distant horizon.
Meera. Washed up. Washed out. Walks down the highway.
A bus appears.
She waves it down to a stop. Hops in.
Men. From the hinterland. Their eyes on her. She walks past the
stares and takes the seat right at the back.

93.

Stoic.
She notices - Two schoolbound kids. One of them in new shiny
civilian clothes and with neatly combed hair. A packet of
candies in his hands. A birthday boy!
Meeras eyes linger on his happy face.
An old woman smoking a beedi turns to look at her.
OLD WOMAN IN THE BUS
Tu theek sa beti?
Meera looks at her. Into her sympathetic eyes.
Something comes upon her. A tear rolls down her eyes.
The old woman touches her cheek affectionately.
OLD WOMAN IN THE BUS
Khaa le.
Meera looks - the old woman is proffering an orange.
Meera takes a piece and puts it in her mouth.
The sunlight on her face. The orange. The wind in her hair. Its
good to be alive.
The old woman gently pulls up her shawl to cover the both of
them.
Tired, Meera closes her eyes.
Outside, the morning sun shines on a signboard.
NH 10. Have a safe journey.
FADE OUT.
ROLL IN END CREDITS
THE END

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