MARJAAVAAN is the story of unrequited love, set against the backdrop of the underbelly of Mumbai. In one of the poorer areas of Mumbai, Narayan Anna (Nassar) calls the shots. He has an army of men at his disposal and the most faithful of them is Raghu (Sidharth Malhotra). As an infant, he was found abandoned and it was Narayan Anna who raised him. Raghu is faithful and dedicated and always in the good books of Narayan Anna. As a result, Narayan's son Vishnu (Riteish Deshmukh), a three-foot-midget, feels very jealous and he detests Raghu. The said locality also consists of a brothel where one of the nautch girls is Arzoo (Rakul Preet Singh). She is in love with Raghu but the latter doesn't believe in this concept.
It all however changes when Raghu comes across Zoya (Tara Sutaria), a mute girl from Kashmir. She teaches him the power and importance of music and love. In no time, both fall for each other. Things go smooth until one day, Zoya witnesses a murder committed by Vishnu. Vishnu informs Narayan Anna about it who in turn tells Raghu to finish off Zoya! Raghu decides to elope with Zoya but he's caught by Vishnu's men at the bus stand. Also, Vishnu kidnaps two kids - Timepass (Om Kanojia) and Payal (Alina Qazi) â€“ both of whom train under Zoya. Narayan Anna then gives Raghu two choices â€“ eliminate Zoya and save Timepass and Payal.
Or else, everyone will die. Zoya insists that Raghu should kill her and Raghu reluctantly does so. Raghu is shattered like never before and he's arrested by ACP Ravi Yadav (Ravi Kishan). What happens next forms the rest of the film.