‘Murder In Mahim’ Recap (Episodes 1-8): Who Is The Killer?

In the heart of Mumbai, we see a hidden world behind a toilet at Mahim station, where gay sex workers seek shelter from society’s harsh judgment. You see, these people can’t freely love who they want in the open. Why? Because homophobia runs deep in people’s minds, these people are called “criminals” in society’s eyes. Adapted from Jerry Pinto’s renowned novel, the show Murder in Mahim, on Jio Cinema, directed by Raj Acharya, tells us a story from before the Supreme Court lifted the ban on same-sex relationships. Murder in Mahim‘s story starts with the murder of Laxman, a gay sex worker known in their circle as “Proxy.” He was murdered in the Mahim station toilet, and after that incident, more murders followed, which even included police officers. But why? Is it a hate crime?

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Shiva Jende, a police officer played by Vijay Raaz, and Peter Fernandes, a retired journalist played by Ashutosh Rana – together try to solve the mystery behind these killings. Yet, Murder in Mahim series somewhat failed to balance the mystery-solving aspect with its heavy social commentary. Murder in Mahim shows the prejudice faced by the LGBTQ+ community but perhaps strays too far from the central plotline. Also, can justice win in a system that is corrupted by law enforcement which commits crimes like honey trapping and ruins innocent lives? But let’s shift our focus back to the mystery. Can this dynamic duo of police and journalists crack the case? Let’s find out. 

Spoilers Ahead

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What has been found out about Proxy’s murder? 

Laxman, also known as Proxy, worked as a gay sex worker around the Mahim station toilet in Mumbai. One day, while heading to work, he was called over by someone wearing a green hoodie with their face hidden. Thinking it was for work, he went, only to be murdered by this person. The next day, the area was swarmed by police and people, shocked by the splattered blood in the bathroom. Forensic evidence revealed that the killer was likely amusing himself because of how he made the crude cuts and removed Laxman’s kidney. This suggests it could be a hate crime, possibly committed by someone who despises the LGBTQ+ community. And who is running the investigation? Police Inspector Shiva Jende and Sub-Inspector Firdaus. Another person who joins the investigation for selfish reasons is retired journalist Peter Fernandes. Why? Because the police found Sunil’s contact, who happens to be Peter’s son, on Laxman’s phone. Peter struggled with the thought that Sunil might be gay and wasn’t happy that Shiva, of all people, was working on the case. This hatred comes from a past conflict when Peter exposed corruption involving Shiva’s father, Dhular Jende, a former police inspector. This public exposure humiliated Shiva and his father, made him leave his job, and destroyed their friendship. So, Peter was determined to clear his son’s name, even if it meant pretending to be a reporter again to prove Sunil’s innocence.


How did police officer Durra die? 

The next person targeted by the murderer was Danesh, who was thrown from the station bridge. On his body, the killer left a message indicating the next victim would be police officer Durra. Despite being police officers, Durra and Pagmat were involved in honey-trapping cases. They lured gay sex workers like Proxy, his friend Unit, and other people like them into compromising situations where they used their power to take money from them by threatening to expose secretly recorded videos. In a society where homophobia is common and LGBTQ+ people struggle to be accepted, being exposed in such a way is a huge shame for them. But these officers cared only about themselves and didn’t hesitate to commit these criminal acts and label their victims as society’s polluters. One of their victims, Sooraj Desai, who was called “Pappu” by the police, was thought to have committed suicide due to the shame of exposure. When Durra realized he was the next target, he and Pagmat speculated that Pappu’s ghost was behind these attacks. Meanwhile, the murderer, aware of Durra’s son’s diabetes, visited their home under the pretense of giving him insulin injections, but actually poisoned and killed him. Durra believed all these events had happened because of Pagmat’s greed, where he exploited these people’s helplessness and vulnerability, and because of that, his little child has been murdered. Fueled by anger, Durra shot Pagmat, and later, in the police station, after confessing his crime, Durra killed himself. 

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Who was the real murderer? 

When Peter delved into the case, he reached out to Sooraj’s wife, Hemali. She revealed that Sooraj had taken his own life after his mother-in-law’s death because he couldn’t afford her hospital bills, and his mother-in-law was just like his mother, so it hit him hard, and he was depressed as well. Initially, Hemali said his suicide note was found under the pillow, but later she changed her story, saying it was on the table. This inconsistency raised suspicions, especially when it was discovered that Hemali’s handwriting matched the suicide note. Even though she tried hard to deny this, the police realized she was involved in the murder. It turned out that Hemali’s brother, Biral, also known as Shwaas, was the actual murderer. Biral pretended to be in love with Leslie, another gay guy whom Peter knew closely. He made up a story about seeking justice for Sooraj, whom Biral claimed to love, hiding the fact that Sooraj was his brother-in-law. Biral even forged an AIDS certificate for Leslie to make him lose hope, showing that he was HIV positive, hoping Leslie would take the blame out of love. Leslie went along with it until he discovered the certificate was fake. Through interrogation, Shiva, Peter, and Firdaus uncovered the truth: Biral had killed these individuals because Sooraj’s actions had hurt his family. Sooraj had been giving money to sex workers like Proxy due to his hidden gay lifestyle, because of which he did not have a relationship with his wife. To silence the police, Sooraj had been bribing them heavily and draining all his savings from his bank account. It was initially thought that Sooraj had committed suicide, but in reality, Biral had murdered him by pushing him from the balcony and then continued his spree of killings.

And you know who took revenge by killing Biral? It was Proxy’s friend, Unit. Being a sex worker himself. He knew the struggles of people like Proxy and how tough it was for them to survive in such a homophobic environment. Proxy had big dreams, just like Unit, who wanted to go to Dubai. But before leaving, he wanted to avenge his friend. So, when the police were after Biral, Unit tracked him down to his hiding spot and took justice into his own hands by murdering him. Even though the police arrested him, Unit showed no remorse. It gives you an idea of the difficult circumstances people like them have to go through, leading them to commit crimes or even consider suicide. And it’s not just them; even Sub-Inspector Firdaus, who faced discrimination for loving people of the same sex, was called a “criminal” by the ACP officer. But it was good to see how Peter and Shiva Jende stood by her and showed support. Peter’s transformation throughout the series was remarkable. From being completely homophobic to witnessing these crimes and investigating them, his eyes were opened. He wholeheartedly accepted his son’s sexuality.

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Murder in Mahim ended on a positive note, with Peter returning to being a journalist and mending his lost friendship with Shiva again. In the end, we see Shiva Jende and Firdaus are ready to file a complaint against their ACP for involvement in crimes like organ trafficking, as he is the real criminal.


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Sutanuka Banerjee
Sutanuka Banerjee
Sutanuka, a devoted movie enthusiast, embarked on her cinematic journey since childhood, captivated by the enchanting world of the Harry Potter series. This early passion ignited her love for movies, providing an escape into the magical realms of cinema. She is currently pursuing a master's degree in media science, combining her academic pursuits with her unwavering passion for the silver screen.

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