The boy Krishna is abandoned by his mother at the Apollo Circus and she tells him that he can only return home when he can afford 500 rupees to pay for the bicycle of his brother that he ... See full summary »



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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Shafiq Syed ...
Krishna / Chaipau
Hansa Vithal ...
Manju Golub
Chanda Sharma ...
Sola Saal
Chillum (as Raghubir Yadav)
Anita Kanwar ...
Rekha Golub (as Aneeta Kanwar)
Baba Golub
Anjaan ...
Child at the circus
Amrit Patel ...
Circus Boss
Murari Sharma ...
Ticket Seller
Ram Murthy ...
Mad Man (as Ram Moorti)
Sarfuddin Qureshi ...
Koyla (as Sarfuddin Quarassi)
Raju Barnad ...
Irshad Hashmi ...
Mohanraj Babu ...
Chandrashekhar Naidu ...


The boy Krishna is abandoned by his mother at the Apollo Circus and she tells him that he can only return home when he can afford 500 rupees to pay for the bicycle of his brother that he had trashed. Krishna is left behind by the circus and he takes a train to Bombay. Krishna is called Chaipau by the street children of Bombay and he works delivering and selling tea for Chacha, who owns a street bar. Krishna befriends the heroin addicted Chillum that sells drugs for the drug dealer and caftan Baba Golub, and the girl Manju Golub, who is the daughter of Baba with the prostitute Rekha Golub. Krishna dreams on saving 500 rupees to return home, but the life on the streets of Bombay is not easy. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

tea | street | job | drugs | prostitute | See All (114) »


Crime | Drama


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Parents Guide:




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Release Date:

7 October 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Salaam Bombay  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$2,080,046 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Irrfan Khan made an appearance in this film as a writer, one of his first appearances. See more »


Krishna starts off with eight glasses of tea. One glass is broken by Sweet Sixteen when he offers her a drink. He is then seen walking back to the tea stand with eight full glasses, but when he gets back he has seven empty glasses. See more »


Rekha Golub: [To Baba] Just like a customer.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Ending credits: no guts no glory 52 locations 52 days what problem? no problem See more »


Featured in Zomergasten: Episode #5.3 (1992) See more »


Daar Laga Ley
Written by Sachin Dev Burman
See more »

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User Reviews

one of the best about India - from it.
7 January 2005 | by (India) – See all my reviews

i have been late in watching it, but after watching it u feel that you can never be late in watching such a movie. The movie is excellent. Perhaps Mira Nair's best. I was particularly moved by the story and the picturization. you see the striking poverty and its madness, but Mira has been brilliant to show life in it. a lost boy in a big city with a dream to get back home, keeps himself in control, while everything around him is so much polluted with drugs, and prostitution. Poverty is never neat, in the movie also it is validly not shown as such. But the innocence and strength of children, and them growing up in such conditions, makes them more enduring than adults. to say the least the movie is all about life. it is there to show that no matter how hard it is, life exists in slums, in poverty, and people are living it. the movie is a collectors item. one of the best about India - from it. Salaam Bombay.

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