The story revolves around a young hardworking man Anil (Raj Babbar). After his father's disappearence, the responsibilities of paying the dowry for one sister and the marriage of five other sisters fall on him. He works hard as a mechanic, newspaper hawker and a private tutor. He is so engrossed in his family problems that he refuses to marry his beloved Arti (Smita Patil). Arti, a schoolteacher, loves Anil dearly and helps in one of his sister's marriage by convincing the girl's would be father in law not to take dowry. Anil's sister Sarla who is tortured in her husband's house starts singing and dancing as a nautch girl to earn money to pay off the dowry. On the other hand tension grows in the relationship between Anil and Arti over Anil's student Komal (Shoma Anand). Anil refuses Komal as he loves Arti. In the meantime Anil's mother (Rohini Hattangadi) overhears Anil talking to Arti about his depression and sacrifice. She then tries to kill her son and daughters by mixing poison in thier food and tries to commit suicide herself. They are ultimately saved and the film ends with a voice preaching population control.