Study Guide

Slumdog Millionaire Police Inspector (Irrfan Khan)

Police Inspector (Irrfan Khan)

Assigned to the task of investigating how Jamal cheated on Who Wants to be a Millionaire, the unnamed Police Inspector accompanies us on our journey through Jamal's unbelievable life story.

He's businesslike, pragmatic, and, at first, extremely skeptical of Jamal. He's also pretty condescending, immediately judging Jamal as nothing more than a stupid, untrustworthy poor kid:

INSPECTOR: What the hell can a slumdog possibly know?

But as Jamal reveals more and more of his story, explaining how he came to know the answer to each question he was asked on the show, the Inspector begins to come around.

It doesn't take long for the Inspector to be humbled by Jamal; he soon discovers there are holes in his knowledge as a part of the middle class establishment, and his respect for Jamal as a slum resident grows. Eventually he's convinced that Jamal did not, in fact cheat, releasing his captive and returning him to the show for the final question.

The role of the Police Inspector is minor, but it has a key function; he is our objective eyes and ears for Jamal's rather far-fetched story. We watch as he comes to believe Jamal, developing empathy for our hero, and the millions of people in his position.

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