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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Hindi serials beginning to come of age... Yeh Pyaar Na Hoga Kam

It is heartening to see that the new breed of Hindi serials is more rooted in reality than their predecessors. There is an attempt to depict real people, people whom you would bump into while taking a walk, or at the mall or at work. Yeh Pyar Na Hoga Kam is one such serial that talks about the values of Lucknow, both in terms of class and caste differences. Abeer (the male lead) and Leher (the female lead) belong to two different caste groups; Abeer is a Brahmin and Leher a non-Brahmin. There also exists this slight difference in terms of class position between Abeer’s father and Leher’s uncle (father’s younger brother).

The interplay between caste and class has been further highlighted by the entry of another factor-regionalism. Madhav, Abeer’s cousin is all set to marry Rashmi (a Bengali girl) and preparations are on in full swing. However Abeer’s aunt and his whole family are out to make life difficult for the girl’s family as they belong to a different community and caste group. The entirely real drama wherein the groom’s parents take every opportunity to humiliate the bride’s family not only makes for interesting episodes but is also a telling commentary on the Indian social milieu.

The groom’s side of the family has always had the upper hand in terms of privileges. True to this custom, Madhav’s mother is shown to be a total shrew who at the first introductory meet commented on the fact that Rashmi’s (the bride) family had little sense of tradition and custom as they had travelled all the way from Kolkata to get their girl married at the boy’s house, instead of it being the other way round. Then again when Reshmi’s father goes to her to finalise the rituals that would be carried out by the bride’s side of the family, she snubs them by crossing out their list of rituals. Madhav’s mother then informs Rashmi’s father that the marriage will happen according to the rites and rituals that she will finalise and that the bride’s family will have no say in it and will only take part as mute spectators. She makes it very clear that as she is the groom’s mother her decision is final.

In our social hierarchy, the bride’s family is always placed a peg down the groom’s family. If it also happens to be an inter-caste and inter-community marriage, things get heightened. And this kind of social behavior is not restricted to rural areas and small towns but is also a part of the fabric of urban existence. But isn’t it time that things changed? Yeh Pyar na Hoga Kam, by depicting this reality of caste and class disparity and regionalism is trying to raise a point and say that let us all rejoice and celebrate the union that takes place in a marriage and not spoil its beauty by bringing in divisive derogatory elements.

1 comment:

Octobervision said...

This serial is certainly a big move away from the Ekta Kapoor style drivel that clogs the TV channels.

There is also a refreshing honesty. At least the characters are not overdressed, the first mobile phone appears in passing in Madhav's hands after so many episodes. Of course, we can only hope that characters like Mrs Shukla & Dadiji carry their villiany just this far and no further.

Enjoy Nautanki TV