Plot Synopsis

  • WARNING: Spoilers

    Shot in beautiful, untouched forests of Poonch, Surankot and surrounding areas of Kashmir, Oxygen is a portrayal of the moral ambiguity of corruption among low paid government employees. The dilemma of low salaries and tempting deals offered to grossly underpaid and under-employed officials and the resultant struggle of honest officers with the established system forms the central plot of the film.

    Synopsis

    Imran is a District Manager in the Forest Department of the state of Jammu and Kashmir. As a student Imran had visions of "improving the system" by introducing honesty and integrity in the workings of the forest department. But after 2 years, he is compelled to fall in line with "the system" as he starts negotiating deals for the felling of expensive trees. In this he is aided and abetted by his senior officers, the police department and also his own staff.

    He gets involved in a major deal with a big buyer and along with his head clerk Nikhat, an older woman, they try to complete this in a short time. The other employees, many of them being contract workers or low paid 4th class employees have built big dreams from the payment they will receive from this deal. But he struggles with this level of corruption, getting stressed and losing sleep in the process!

    And then one day Imran's daughter falls ill. And as he prays for her recovery, he promises Allah to never do anything wrong. He informs Nikhat and his team that they will not proceed with the deal. His decision drives everyone in the forest and police department in a frenzy.