Nadira and her tribe migrate from Persia to Agra. Bowled over by her mellifluous voice and beauty, Prince Salim introduces himself to her as a soldier and the two fall in love, meeting regularly at the Anar (pomegranate) garden. While strolling in his garden, Emperor Akbar, impressed by her singing, bestows on her the title, ‘Anarkali.’ When her singing brings back to consciousness his son Salim, who is grievously injured in the war and goes into a coma, Akbar makes her the court dancer. This upsets Gulnar, the former court dancer, who has secret ambitions of marrying the Prince. On the day of Prince Salim’s coronation, Gulnar mixes alcohol in Anarkali’s drink who, under its influence, expresses her love for Salim. This angers Akbar, who orders her to be imprisoned. Salim rebels against his father but his mother Jodhabai stops him at the battle field. Salim is held captive and the Emperor orders capital punishment for the lovers. Anarkali is taken to a distant place to be buried alive. Salim rushes to save her, but by the time he reaches there she is already buried. He bangs his head on her grave and dies.