Unable to bear the brutality and repeated rapes by her alcoholic husband, a battered Punjabi housewife and mother of two in London, sets him on fire and kills him. Charged with first-degree murder, she is sentenced to life imprisonment, where she befriends her cellmate, a wealthy white woman, from whom she learns English. Her cellmate is so moved by her story that she asks her stepbrother, a highly respected queen's counsel, to file her appeal. Her case comes to the notice of a motley group of south Asian social workers running a under funded organization called "Southhall Black Sisters". They bring her plight to the attention of the media by organizing rallies to gather public support for her freedom. She is ultimately freed by the judical system.