Saraswathi "Yamuna", the younger daughter of an Orthodox father, comes to Madras for finishing her studies. Major Madhavan, the husband of Yamuna's elder sister Ganga, gets infatuated with Yamuna after seeing her photo in a letter sent by her. Meanwhile, Yamuna meets Jeevanantham "Jeeva" in a bus, who gives his ticket to her as she had not taken her own. Later one day, Jeeva decides to express his love to Yamuna by writing in a letter and giving it to her, but he witnesses a group beating a boy who did the same, so he disposes the letter. It is found by Yamuna, who realises his love.
One day when they are walking together, Jeeva tries to remove dirt from Yamuna's eyes, and he kisses her. Yamuna is angry with him. Jeeva senses it and gets wet in the rain and gets a cold. Hearing this, Yamuna meets him. Jeeva expresses that she is the only medicine to him, and he needs her. Yamuna promises she will marry him. On Yamuna's birthday, Jeeva jumps into her house and presents her a puppy. One day, fearing that Yamuna's father might not marry him to Yamuna, he decides to marry her in a register office, but Yamuna refuses and Jeeva leaves.
Meanwhile, Madhavan settles his father-in-law's debts and earns his trust. He also pays for connecting a landline to Yamuna's house and talks to her regularly, but Ganga is unaware of this. One day, Ganga finds it, and starts to realise his true identity. Madhavan then expresses his love affair on Yamuna to his wife. This makes her so upset that she attempts to go and live with her father and Yamuna. Madhavan imprisons her in home, and one day he tells her she can go to her father's house by flight, and tricks her by making her drink a glass of milk laced with sleeping pills, as a result of which she falls unconscious. Madhavan then murders Ganga by suffocating her to death with a polythene cover and tying it around her head by his shoelace, and lies to everyone that she died from heart attack. He then makes Yamuna and her father stay with him in Delhi to look after his baby, but he has other plans.
Jeeva comes to Delhi. One day he sees Yamuna, who ignores him. Later he sees her carrying the puppy and tells why she needs the puppy when she does not need him. Yamuna leaves the puppy in the middle of the road. Later that night, Yamuna comes to take the puppy in the rain. Jeeva sees this and realises she really loves him. Two months later, Yamuna's father decides to get her married to Jeeva; Madhavan decides to stop the marriage. Yamuna's family meets Jeeva in a restaurant. While Jeeva was talking to Madhavan, he takes advantage of a careless Sikh and dashes against him, causing Jeeva to lose his balance as well. In the melee, Madhavan steals Jeeva's purse. When Jeeva senses his purse missing, he confronts the Sikh and humiliates himself, exactly as Madhavan anticipated. Later, he suspects Madhavan and wants to frisk him. This angers Yamuna's father as he blindly believes Madhavan.
Madhavan later gives Jeeva's flight ticket and wants to send him to Madras, but Jeeva fools Madhavan by tearing the ticket and spending the day with Yamuna. Enraged, Madhavan drenches his baby in the rain and calls Yamuna to look for it. Later, Madhavan arranges for some men to pour liquor into Jeeva's mouth and lay him in the middle of the road. Madhavan makes Yamuna and her father believe Jeeva is a drunkard. The father boasts that he has the divine gift to discern good versus bad people upon sight; with that "gift", he declares Jeeva a bad person. Meanwhile, Jeeva complains to Lt. Col Hariharan, a friend of Madhavan, but he does not believe him. Later when celebrating Holi, Madhavan asks Jeeva the puppy. Jeeva gives it, but Madhavan kills the puppy and frames Jeeva. An argument ensues between them; Madhavan tries to kill Jeeva with a rod, but stops when Yamuna pleads with him.
Hariharan eventually realises the truth about Madhavan and tells him to stop. Instead, Madhavan kills Hariharan, staging it as a car accident. Madhavan plants narcotics in Jeeva's pillows and tips off the police, leading to Jeeva's arrest. While meeting Jeeva in prison, Madhavan boasts and lays the plot out to Jeeva; how he cruelly killed Ganga to get Yamuna. Yamuna overhears this and informs her father. Her father wails in agony for his murdered older daughter and his folly and poor judgement. They plan to escape, but Madhavan arrives, knocks out Yamuna's father, and holds Yamuna prisoner in his house. Jeeva escapes from prison and arrives there. A fight ensues between Madhavan and Jeeva in which Jeeva triumphs. Yamuna and Jeeva take the baby to the hospital as it fainted. Yamuna's father locks the doors, opens the gas cylinder, and lights a matchstick, causing an explosion that kills him and Madhavan. Jeeva is exonerated and unites with Yamuna and the baby.
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