A rural tale
Zee TV, Monday to Friday, 7.30 pm
Cast: Vaishnavi, Manasi Salve, Diwakar Pundir, Roopal Tyagi
Sapne Suhaane Ladakpan Ke is about two cousin sisters. One, a Mumbai girl, the other from Benaras, where shopping for your hosiery is unthinkable, unless your mother or any other woman is escorting you! The producers tell us it’s about adolescent issues, the urban-small town divide, the differences in the way the children are brought up, their mind-sets, their limits, fears, anxieties etc. It’s primarily a story about a young teenage girl, who’s lost her mother to cancer. It is a transition from the sheltered cocoon of her mother’s house to her new home in her maternal aunt’s house in Benares where she has to adjust to a joint family. Everything is alien to her– the way they talk, think or dress up.
Sneha and Shail are sisters separated by distance. Sneha is the younger one who years ago had fallen in love and married the man who was incidentally chosen by their parents for her elder sister. Shail, the older one, forgave her kid sister and got married into a joint family. Years later, Sneha calls up Shail asking her to come to Mumbai. She’s dying of cancer, a fact hidden from her only child, Gunjan, who she’s brought up with love and care. Leaving Gunjan in the care of her maasi who the former detests with all her heart (something that’s not clearly established), Sneha dies. The uphill task of trying to adjust in Shail’s joint family and the Benaras mindset begins for Gunjan.
It’s an interesting premise and an identifiable one. Though one wonders if a dying woman would actually not try her best to cure herself especially for the sake of her child. In this case, Sneha seems to have already made up her mind of dying and leaving the responsibility to her sister. Also, why would she entrust her daughter’s responsibility to a sister who she’s not had any contact with over the years instead of her husband who we are sure is quite capable of looking after his only girl?
On the upside, the makers (Shakuntalam Telefilms), the director and writers have sensitively dealt with the story. For instance, when Shail leaves for Mumbai, her reticent, disciplinarian husband who initially is not very happy to let her go gives her a mobile phone to be in touch with or the way Rachana (Shail’s shy-to-a-fault daughter) struggles to buy herself a slip to wear under her blouse for her farewell party!
About the performances, Vaishnavi as the caring, mature Shail is pitch-perfect. Manasi Salve in the brief role of the ailing sister is very good (pity, she looks too young to play a mother of a teenager) and though it’s early days for the two young girls, we were particularly moved by Gunjan’s (Roopal Tyagi) breakdown scene after her mother’s death. It was an achingly beautiful, totally lump-in-the-throat moment.
Sony’s Parvarish too handles adolescent, teenage issues but those are largely from an ‘urban’ point of view. Sapne Suhaane… we guess will take us more into the minds of small town children, their adjustment issues etc. It’s begun well and that’s half a job done.
Verdict: A good premise, a story well told.