Kashmiri woman taunted and tormented for being infertile, is driven to jump into the river dividing the two parts of the disputed territory of Kashmir. However, she ends up on the other side of the border, is arrested, interrogated and eventually raped. She gets pregnant, a proof of the horror of rape in custody but also belying the allegations of infertility. She gives birth to a beautiful baby daughter, Mobeen, who is brought up in Jammu jail until Shehnaz is released and arrangements are made for her repatriation. However, another shock is awaiting her. According to the laws governing the two countries she, as a Pakistan Kashmiri, can return to Pakistan but not her daughter, an Indian-born citizen with an Indian father. Officials of the two governments haggle over rules regarding the citizenship and identity of the hapless mother and daughter.
Naturally, Shehnaz's ordeal attracted the attention of women rights and peace activist and her case became a rallying point for those who wanted to expose the absurdity of religious, political and gender divides and the suffering and sorrow they cause." Dukh Derya " is more than a dramatic presentation of Shehnazs story. It tries to link it with the suffering of women during Partition, especially those forcibly repatriated. Living their children behind. In fact, It goes further back in history and mythology, the search of the source of the river of sorrow.