Set in London, ?Provoked? is the traumatic story of a battered Punjabi housewife and mother of two, Kiranjit Ahluwalia (Aishwarya Rai). Unable to bear the brutality of her alcoholic husband Deepak Ahluwalia (Naveen Andrews), she takes revenge by setting him on fire. Charged with first-degree murder, she is sentenced to life imprisonment, where she befriends her cell-mate, a wealthy white woman Veronica Scott (Miranda Richardson), from whom she learns English.
Her cell mate is so moved by her story that she asks her step-brother Lord Edward Foster (Robbie Coltrane), a highly respected queen?s counsel to file her appeal. Her case comes to the notice of a motley group of south Asian social workers running a under funded organization called South all Black Sisters. They bring her plight to the attention of the media by organizing rallies to gather public support for her freedom.
She is ultimately freed by the judicial system in a landmark case called Regina vs. Ahluwalia that redefined the word PROVOCATION in the case of battered women. She was reunited with her children and subsequently gives an award by the Prime Minister?s wife for her crusade against domestic violence.