Judge Raghunath is a wealthy district judge who convicts Jagga, a man whose father was a criminal, of rape on little evidence. The judge believes that "good people are born to good people, and criminals are born to criminals." Jagga later escapes and kidnaps the judge's wife Leela for revenge. When he finds out that she has just become pregnant, he releases her after four days and plans a different kind of revenge. The judge suspects that Leela was unfaithful to him with Jagga, and throws her out of the house.
She has a son, Raj, and they live in poverty as a result of being estranged from the father. As a child, Raj befriends Rita in school, but he is removed from the school rolls while trying to maintain a job, and Rita moves to another city. Even though they are separated, Rita remains in Raj's thoughts. On the streets, Raj turns to a life of petty crime and finds a father-figure in Jagga, who helps him to become a talented criminal.
- Genre: Romantic
- Runtime: 193 Minutes
Awara (Hindi: आवारा Āvārā, meaning "Tramp"; also written Awāra and Awaara) is a 1951 Hindi film directed and produced by Raj Kapoor who also plays the leading role. Music was composed by the team of Shankar Jaikishan. Kapoor's real-life father Prithviraj Kapoor stars as his on-screen father Judge Raghunath. Kapoor's youngest real-life brother Shashi Kapoor plays the younger version of his character. Prithiviraj's father Dewan Bashwanath Kapoor also played a cameo role in his only film appearance. The film centers on the intertwining lives of poor Raj (Kapoor) and privileged Rita (Nargis). In the film, Kapoor's poor, innocent "little tramp" character references Charlie Chaplin and was further developed in other Kapoor films such as Shri 420.
The film became an overnight sensation in South Asia, and found success abroad in the Soviet Union, East Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. In particular, the song "Awara Hoon" (I am a Tramp), sung by Mukesh with lyrics by Shailendra, became hugely popular across the Indian subcontinent, as well as in the Soviet Union, China, Turkey, Afghanistan, and Romania. The film was also nominated for the Grand Prize of the Cannes Film Festival in 1953. Owing to its popularity in so many countries, the film is a candidate for most successful film of all time. In 2012, Awara was included in the 20 new entries to All-Time 100 greatest films by TIME.