SonyLIV’s original crime thriller, ‘Tabbar’, focuses on a family grappling with an unintended murder, being constantly forced to take horrendous steps to win a temporary refuge for themselves.
The plot opens with Omkar Singh (Pavan Raj Malhotra) driving a car through a narrow road lined by farmlands at night. His wife Sargun (Supriya Pathak) is seated beside him with a flushed face. At a distance, Omkar stops the car and brings out a corpse from its trunk and arranges a funeral pyre. As the pyre is set ablaze, Sargun is full of remorse & tries to commit suicide.
She is rescued by Omkar and she asserts that God will never forgive them for this. Omkar counters her and says that if God existed, he wouldn’t have put them in this distressing situation.
The scene shifts to sometime earlier where we see Omkar as a doting husband to his ailing wife; keeping a check on her medications and regularizing her exercises. We are introduced to their younger son, Tegi, an immature schoolboy aspiring to be a Youtube star, who feels that his parents prefer his elder brother. Meanwhile, the family awaits the visit of the elder son, Harpreet Singh a.k.a ‘Happy’, a UPSC aspirant who lives in Delhi.
The family rejoices Happy’s visit when a man named Maheep Sodhi (Rachit Bahal) visits them and informs Happy that their luggage bags have been swapped due to similar appearances. Happy apologises and runs back to bring Maheep’s bag that Tegi had put into their shared room.
Nothing would have gone wrong if Tegi hadn’t taken out a package that seemed like a gift that he had asked his elder brother to get him. Maheep checks the bag and leaves but returns when he finds the package missing. The package actually contained drugs that Maheep was smuggling.
He starts rummaging their home questioning them about the missing item. Tegi has already left for his friend’s house to show him the gift. The family is unaware of the mishap and are held at gunpoint. Tegi arrives amidst this and is taken hostage by Maheep. Unable to calm Maheep down, the family takes the matter into their own hands. Sargun hits Maheep with a knife to save Tegi and Happy shoots him down with a revolver to save his mother and brother.
Omkar, a policeman turned store owner, who is already aware of the facades of law restricts them from surrendering. Hence, they collectively prepare to get rid of the corpse and put on their bright faces as if nothing has happened.
Maheep is the younger brother of Ajeet Sodhi (Ranvir Shorey), a businessman turned politician. Ajeet loves Maheep dearly as he is the only family he is left with. Ajeet is busy with his election campaigns and equally stressed about his brother’s whereabouts. His election campaign with the theme of drug eradication is run down by his competitor when the latter circulates Maheep’s video of sniffing drugs. Ajeet’s trusted man, Multan (Ali Mughal) is already combing through the whole city of Jalandhar and utilising every information available to find Maheep.
Within this chaos, Maheep’s corpse is retrieved at the Harike river which had been thrown away by Happy and Omkar. This incident builds the tension and what follows is a series of lies, cover-ups and reckless decisions with the only existent rule — ‘Family first’.
Multan has already cornered the family after evaluating the hints from CCTV footage, Maheep’s text messages and his cell phone location. He is in search of more evidence and tries retrieving information through the drugs that went missing.
The ‘Tabbar’ ending explained in detail:
After Maheep’s murder, Tegi tries hard to convince his father and brother to sell the drugs they retrieved from Maheep to make some money. He is impulsive enough to share this with his friend with whom he collaborated to create a Youtube channel.
His friend keeps influencing him to betray his own family and even finds him a drug dealer, who takes him to his boss after seeing the special kind of drug Tegi owns. The boss, actually a spy put in by Multan, immediately takes Tegi hostage and tortures him to know about the drug’s source. This is an important clue for Multan to identify Omkar’s family as the actual culprits.
Omkar and Happy try to trick the police by framing Ajeet in the murder of his own brother. In this process, Happy manages to get a job in Ajeet’s firm and tries to put in the bag full of drugs in Ajeet’s car. He is spotted by Ajeet’s competitor and tortured. Omkar comes in to save Happy and reveals all that he has done to Maheep.
He tries to strike a deal with the competitor, but the latter betrays Omkar. He promises Ajeet to hand over the killers to him if he drops out from the election. Omkar fakes being framed by Ajeet’s competitor at that instant and Ajeet killed his competitor in the chaos and confusion.
While they are leaving, Ajeet hears the alarm on Omkar’s watch and immediately realises who is the actual killer as he had heard it during his phone call with Multan, when he got killed. However, Ajeet is unable to kill them as Omkar had already poisoned the glass of water he gave to Ajeet to not take another chance.
Happy confesses that he left his coaching classes a while ago and he was under an immense loan. He also confesses to have intentionally stolen Maheep’s bag full of drugs after he saw the latter snorting them in the train’s toilet.
Witnesses and suspicions
The sound of the shooting is heard by Omkar’s neighbour, Suneel (Babla Kochhar). He also had a minor conversation with Maheep while he visited Omkar’s house. He becomes doubtful when Maheep’s video on drug intake goes viral as Maheep is introduced to him as Happy’s friend.
When Multan and his people come into the locality enquiring about Maheep, Suneel easily recognises Maheep. He follows Multan while he fishes through Omkar’s house in search of proper evidence. During this time, he steals Omkar’s revolver that was used to shoot down Maheep and later uses it to blackmail Omkar. This blackmail costs him his life as Omkar murders him and fakes his death as a suicide.
Lucky (Paramveer Singh Cheema), who is a policeman and Happy’s cousin, is a prime witness to a series of incidents and weird behaviours of the family after the murder. Lucky suddenly visits the family when they are preparing to dispose of the corpse. They are all seated in a car with the corpse in a sack when Lucky approaches them. They bluff and say that they are all out for a visit to their store and carrying fresh vegetables in the sack. Lucky offers them a ride to the store in his police van when their car doesn’t start.
Later, his mother informs him about a bloodstain on his uniform which makes him curious. He extracts Maheep’s footage from the CCTV in the locality near Happy’s house while solving another case. He is deeply interested to participate in this case to gain a promotion and hence, he starts collecting shreds of evidence on his own. He also overhears a conversation between Happy and his father about Happy losing his ear pod on the bridge over Harike river.
Lucky starts connecting links when his fiance, Palak (Nupur Nagpal), Suneel’s daughter, informs him that she feels her father was murdered. She informs him that she found a debit card on the stairs of their terrace and how her bag with the card got stolen on her way to the police station. She hides the fact that she went there with Happy because she doesn’t want to reveal her relationship with him. But she eventually confesses. Later, Lucky understands how Happy tried to save him and his father by taking Palak on a different route away from the police station and faking a theft.
The corpse being burnt in the introduction scene is Lucky’s. He is killed because he threatens to reveal all about the murder which worsens Sargun’s condition as she has been already facing mental trauma after Maheep’s murder. A crow cawing (rendered as a bad omen) in her veranda after the incident is fixated in her mind.
After this, she keeps imagining crows cawing in her home, blood running down the walls, her hands covered in blood and everyone who got murdered always surrounding her. She believes that the only way to be relieved from this is to surrender. She scribes on her walls about the incident and what followed. She keeps calling people on the phone and tries telling them.
Omkar is already aware that everything is out of his control though he manages to silence everyone who blocked his pursuit to save his family.
We are also shown instances of young Omkar who promised Sargun to always look after his family and prioritise it over anything else. Omkar with a heavy heart poisons the food he cooks for his wife to save the future of his children.
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