Kader Khan (Jahangir Khan):
Sitting in his self-styled "Darbar", Jahangir Khan has assumed the status of the uncrowned King of the underworld. Extortions, killings, murder, gang warfare are second nature to him.
He practically runs a parallel judiciary system. With a flick of a telephone or one raised finger, Jahangir Khan is able to solve more problems than our entire judiciary system and the law and order forces put together.
Now getting on in years, Jahangir Khan has mellowed down and is training his son Farid (Mazhar) to takeover. However, he has always been a little too wary of his eldest son Majid (Nana Patekar) violent behaviour and has therefore, kept him away from his own business. And then one day.........
Nana Patekar (Majid Khan):
Majid Khan is a mentally disturbed person. He has a mean evil glint in his eyes which reflects the dangerous criminal thoughts that cross his mind.
Kept at a distance by his father Jahangir Khan (Kader Khan), relegated to the position of the black sheep of the family, Majid Khan has grown up with a lot of psychic complexes. Not able to compete with his father's power, his cruelty further develops. The emotional suppression due to his father has erupted as a destructive force in Majid Khan.
His one main obsession is to evacuate all slums and replace them with tall towers. And in his mission he is most ruthless and cruel and does not hesitate to use brute force on anyone or anything that comes in his way. His only Achilles heel, his soft corner, is his mentally retarded son. He dotes on him in his own obsessive way. He is a man who has set out in life with a death-wish. And then one day.........
Mazhar Khan (Farid Khan):
As the youngest and the favourite of the two Jahangir Khan's (Kader Khan) sons. Farid Khan has been trained to take over the mantle of the "The Don" once Jahangir Khan retires. As an obedient and diligent son to Jahangir Khan, and a loving and caring brother to Majid Khan (Nana Patekar), Farid Khan is a most rounded personality. Intelligent, yet shrewd, violent yet controlled, ruthless yet reasonable, Farid Khan's appeal lies in his sedate, silent charm. He is the bridge of communication between Jahangir Khan and Majid Khan. He is the pacifying force between these two violent temperaments. And then one day.........
Kiran Kumar (Anwar Khan):
The strong, silent, slithery shadow, following Jahangir Khan (Kader Khan) everywhere, he is the most trusted servant of the 'Don'. Having been with Jahangir Khan (Kader Khan) through his every trial and tribulation, Anwar Khan worships the ground his master walks on. In his own silent way, he is the strength on which Jahangir Khan quite often leans his weary shoulders on. And then one day.........
Om Puri (Parvez Hussain):
Parvez Hussain is an honest, sincere, hardworking, humble, editor - publisher - printer of a fearlessly forthright tabloid called News Today. Living, eating, printing, editing, sleeping in his small apartment, Parvez Hussain prefers to live hand-to-mouth existence on the meager income from his paper. And this facet of his personality is more emphasised when, even though threatened and man-handled by some dangerous goons, he sticks to his guts and continues printing the up-date on the atrocities performed by the underworld mafia on the common man. And then one day.........
Dimple Kapadia (Milli):
Like a helpless caged bird, fluttering against the bars Milli is caught in the whirlpool of life. Very unsure and timid about facing people, Milli stammers every time she confronts anyone. Till Jaggu (Jackie Shroff) enters the periphery of her existence, holds her hand and leads her onto becoming a more confident person.
Milli on her part begins to care for Jaggu. However, one facet of his personality leaves her totally bewildered. She cannot understand his constant suppressed rage and anger. In her own way, she tries to help Jaggu to make peace with himself and to curb his violent behaviour. But a time comes, in the course of events, when the peace-loving Milli, turns a volte-face and urges Jaggu to use his fists, to fight for his rights. And then one day.........
Jackie Shroff (Jaggu):
"Jaggu" is the arch-typical common man. Strong, intense, passionate, and honest, he has become an milieu, born to typical middle class bred parents, Jaggu is finding it hard to adjust to this mode of living. Educated but jobless, a pent-up anger has filled Jaggu ready to erupt at the slightest provocation.
He symbolises the idealism of today's youth which has finally decided to revolt and change the system. He represents the generation which has come to rely on violence to solve all their problems. Years of suppressed emotion has erupted and submissiveness has changed to aggression.
[from the official booklet]