Jamal and his brother Salim were raised in the slums of Mumbai. Orphaned at a young age, they managed to survive as did their young friend Latika. Jamal becomes a contestant on India's version of Who Wants To Be A Millionnaire. He manages to get to 10 million rupees in his first appearance but is arrested by the police who want to know how an illiterate slumdog could possibly know all of those answers without cheating. He explains how specific events in his life taught him the answers and all he can say that being asked questions to which he knows the answers is simply fate.