In Bombay nowadays a Moslem couple, Sultana and Khudabaksh, have just arrived in the city. She is a prostitute and he vaguely works as a photographer and sells postcards to tourists.
Mohamed Bhai, a sort of gang leader accompanied by his bodyguards roams the neighbourhood. The bustling city is full of contrasts as people struggle to make a living and partake in celebrations between the grime of the streets and religious devotion. Sultana makes friends with the prostitutes in her neighbourhood. Khudabaksh, whose past is full of small fraudulent deals, is making plans for the future, certain that he will be able to make some money. Meanwhile Sultana meets Shunkar, a clever young Hindu who manages to obtain a “salwar” for her, a ritual costume in black satin that she is unable to pay for. Meanwhile the Muharram, the period of fasting observed by Moslems, is approaching. —France Diplomatie