‘Ruslaan’ Ending Explained & Movie Recap: Did Kasim Kill Ruslaan?

Hindi cinema is scattered with random movies about jingoism. Pathan, Jawan, Tiger 3, and the latest Fighter are prime examples of films that had nothing new to offer. Commando by Vipul Shah and IB 71, starring Vidyut Jamwal, these two films went off the deep end and lost the plot in jingoistic means. Ruslaan is one such film that narrates the story of a young man who is keen to join the Indian intelligence, and in that pursuit, he is declared a terrorist after a mission goes wrong.


Spoilers Ahead

How did Ruslaan become an orphan?

The movie begins with a bunch of terrorists meeting to finalize the attack they had planned on a school. They were waiting for another associate to arrive with the arms and ammunition. One of them was the owner of the house and father to Ruslaan, who was keen to learn how to play the guitar. On the arrival of the coveted associate that reached Ruslaan’s home, they were attacked by police and the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS). Everyone present inside the house was killed after a gas explosion, but Ruslaan was saved by Sameer Singh, the informer in the terrorist organization. The kid was moved to an orphanage, but Sameer and his wife, Manju, decided to adopt Ruslaan. The couple took him home and raised him as per his faith, yet the kid was always branded as the child of a terrorist. 


What happened in Turkey?

Ruslaan was a trainee with Indian intelligence and was sent on an assignment to Turkey to record a conversation between a Pakistani arms dealer, Rahil, and his Turkish counterpart. The plan went awry when Ruslaan killed the Turkish man and injured Rahil in the process. The mission in Turkey was a failure as Ruslaan learned Rahil was an Indian soldier deep undercover in Pakistan to expose a dreaded terrorist, Kasim, who had been the mastermind of many terrorist attacks in India. Rahil was in Turkey, as he had come close to meeting Kasim when Ruslaan inadvertently crashed the plan. 

What was the assignment given to Ruslaan?

Ruslaan’s handler in intelligence was Mantra, who was furious at him for making an emotional decision in Turkey and not a practical one. Mantra gave him one last chance to prove his caliber. Ruslaan was a talented guitarist, and he was asked to join a certain college as a music teacher and get intel about students who were being radicalized into running a sleeper cell aided by the terrorist Kasim. Ruslaan’s father was not very keen on his son working in intelligence because he claimed the work was thankless. Sameer Singh had served the ATS for a long time, and he did not want his son to follow in his footsteps. 


Who did the phone belong to?

Ruslaan got into the skin of the job assigned to him. During the college festival, a bomb blast on the college premises had Ruslaan follow three men. Unbeknownst to him, he was attacked by a Chinese man who was the leader of the three men Ruslaan was following. Those three men were killed, and Ruslaan was rendered unconscious by the Chinese man who was holding onto a bag he assumed had something of grave importance. Ruslaan, though, picked up a broken phone belonging to one other dead terrorist and requested his hacker friend retrieve data from it. The phone contained some raunchy dance video, but Ruslaan noticed a bulb blinking constantly in the video, which he quickly took to be a morse code message for the deceased terrorist. The encoded message was the coordinates of a five-star hotel. Since the phone was switched on, Kasim got directly in touch with Ruslaan and tried to convince the young boy to switch sides since his father died for the faith. 

Ruslaan was attacked a few moments after speaking on the phone, and he had to save his friend from the people who were sent to kill him. Ruslaan was saved by Vaani, another R&AW analyst, but he was removed from the project by Mantra. 


How was Ruslaan declared a terrorist?

The coordinates gathered by Ruslaan were of a five-star hotel that was hosting a lucrative business deal between India and a US-based oil company run by Bernie Sanders. Mantra and Vaani believed Bernie was the next target, and they were placed in a hotel to monitor the CCTV footage. Ruslaan and Vaani learned that the CCTV feed, which the latter was watching, was doctored, implying that there would be an ugly showdown and Bernie had to be saved. Ruslaan tried his best to save Bernie Sanders, but he was killed by someone. As the police arrived on the spot, which included Ruslaan’s father, the ATS Chief Sameer Singh, they assumed him to be the terrorist who caused mayhem in the hotel and killed Bernie Sanders. Ruslaan escaped arrest by jumping into the sea from the rooftop of the hotel. His father managed to shoot and injure his son to stop him from making a grave mistake. Ruslaan was soon declared a terrorist. 

Why did Vaani join Ruslaan?

Ruslaan wanted to prove himself to be a patriot, as he was haunted by his childhood memories of being called a terrorist’s son, and he could not live with that scar anymore. He formulated a plan and included Vaani, who was also suspended from intelligence work. He wanted to get to the bottom of who killed Bernie Sanders and what the Chinese intended to do now that there was a diplomatic row between India and the USA. Mantra could not support them officially or unofficially, but Ruslaan and Vaani offered to provide intelligence. 


What happened in Azerbaijan?

Ruslaan and Vaani were in Azerbaijan to track the Chinese ex-army man turned oil baron Woo to find out who the three men were that the Chinese hitman killed. Ruslaan and Vaani were able to clone the phone of Elvin, Woo’s right-hand man, to find out details of their plan in India. They soon found out Woo had connections to Kasim, and they were involved in something related to the Mumbai Gas Pipeline Corporation. 

Ruslaan planned to confront Woo at a gala, and the young man confessed to knowing about Woo having some connection with the Mumbai gas pipeline work. Unaffected by Ruslaan’s threats, Woo kidnapped him, intending to kill him, so he had not forwarded this information to his bosses back in India. Before killing Ruslaan, Woo revealed the Chinese hitman he met at the college was carrying a combustive gas that would be introduced to the pipeline in the city of Mumbai. On reaching every home, the gas would cause a blast on igniting, which would lead to unending destruction. This was done with the help of Kasim. 


Was Mantra killed?

Before heading to the party to meet Woo, Ruslaan, and Vaani had informed Mantra about the raunchy video found in the terrorist’s phone that had hidden information in the background. The coordinates pointed towards the fact that the Mumbai pipeline was under threat. Mantra had learned some information and was headed to meet her boss when she was killed in the parking lot. Mantra probably came to know the real identity of Kasim, and she was neutralized as a result. Ruslaan saved himself from being killed by Woo’s men and met Vaani, who was on the way to save him. On the way back from Azerbaijan, both tried to contact Mantra when his father, Sameer, picked up the phone and informed him about her murder. Ruslaan, though, shared with his father Woo’s plan to burn the city down. Sameer requested his son surrender, but Ruslaan had other plans and wanted to fight against the accusations of him being a terrorist.

What Happens To Ruslaan And Kasim?

Ruslaan and Vaani were back in the city and headed straight to the Mumbai Gas Pipeline Cooperation to stop the Chinese hitman from carrying out the devious plan. Ruslaan was aware that if the mission was a success, he would be deemed the most wanted terrorist in the world. Ruslaan was aware he was trapped by the plan concocted by the Chinese and intelligence from the neighboring country, as he was an easy target. He wanted to get rid of the stigma attached to his biological parents and prove to Indian intelligence and his country that he was a capable officer. This is the case in every movie about the work of the intelligence agencies in our country and the neighboring ones. A falsely accused man goes out of his way to prove himself right so that everyone accepts him as the hero.


Ruslaan was able to kill all the infiltrators, including the Chinese hitman. He was livid that the hitman had slipped away the last time, and he had to be killed this time to avoid a colossal human tragedy. As Ruslaan tried to stop the software that would begin the transmission of the combustive gas citywide, he was attacked by his father, Sameer Singh. Sameer turned out to be Kasim, who had been working undercover for the neighboring country for years. Sameer, aka Kasim, claimed to have lost his family in Kashmir, which was his motivation to work against India. He killed Ruslaan’s biological father because he had decided to back away from the plan to bomb the school. Sameer Singh was a classic case of a man using a victim card to justify violence in the name of revenge and faith. He wanted to eradicate the country, and this made him work hard toward his goal, and he eventually became the ATS chief. His humanity was visible when he couldn’t kill Ruslaan. Sameer/Kasim killed Mantra before she could reveal his real identity. Bernie Sanders was also killed so he could brand his son a terrorist to distract the authorities. 

Ruslaan may not have been his flesh and blood, but Sameer/Kasim raised him as his own, which is why it was difficult for him to kill the boy. He had hoped Ruslaan would come to the other side after hearing Kasim talk about how his biological father died. Sameer/Kasim’s constant dilemma and guilt would never leave him, but he was hell-bent on finishing the mission he was told to complete. For Sameer/Kasim, his duty had leverage over his family and others who worked for him, which made it easy for him to complete the job. 


Ruslaan killed his father the next moment, probably because he could not live with the fact that the man who raised him turned out to be his biggest enemy. His father was involved in branding him as a terrorist, and he probably could not forgive him. He had to kill him because he was duty-bound to kill any person who worked against his country. Vaani stopped the software, and an injured Ruslaan came out victorious but was dejected at the turn of events. 

The movie ended with Ruslaan being given the green light by R&AW, and he would be officially serving the agency, which was his dream. His boss asked him to close all the loose ends of the previous job before starting a new one, indicating that he needed to kill people related to the blast he stopped from happening. Ruslaan understood his assignment and killed Woo in his home. Woo was the last link that connected to the almost-bomb explosion and the killing of Bernie Sander, which jeopardized Ruslaan. He had to kill the Chinese man so that his men would not follow him around the world to neutralize him. Ruslaan got to him before he did.


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Smriti Kannan
Smriti Kannan
Smriti Kannan is a cinema enthusiast, and a part time film blogger. An ex public relations executive, films has been a major part of her life since the day she watched The Godfather – Part 1. If you ask her, cinema is reality. Cinema is an escape route. Cinema is time traveling. Cinema is entertainment. Smriti enjoys reading about cinema, she loves to know about cinema and finding out trivia of films and television shows, and from time to time indulges in fan theories.

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