Khushi who had set out to save her sister’s life finds herself in need of saving. Thrust into spotlight, bewildered Khushi takes stumbling steps only for her to fumble and fall.. right into the arms of the man who was going to be her destiny. Though neither knew it then!
Held in the strong arms of a quietly seething Arnav, Khushi stares at him, her nervous fingers clutching his lapels like a drowning man clutching at straws. Comprehension dawns slowly and she quickly withdraws her hands, Arnav realizing that she can stand on her own feet, lets her down, almost shoving her away from him, contempt writ large on his face.
Meanwhile paparazzi are going clickety-click , click , after all they got ‘mindblowing’ salacious piece for their front page, one which can sustain them for weeks.
Khushi is corralled away by Arnav’s security . Arnav meanwhile commands his PA to prevent the leakage or reporting of the ‘SPECTACLE’ in any news papers. At the same time , he orders his minions to interrogate Khushi. Khushi protests her innocence, pleads with them to let her go but all in vain. She is roughly pushed into a room and imprisoned within it.
Meanwhile, Payal’s wedding stands cancelled due to non payment of dowry. The parents are fraught with worry over a missing Khushi. While a timid Payal is caught in dilemma on informing about Khushi’s whereabouts.
Over to Sheesh Mahal;
On coming to know that Khushi has not revealed anything and is professing ignorance about whole event. Arnav decides to take matters in his own hands. He quickly walks towards the room where Khushi is locked in. Once the door opens, Khushi tries to flee like a liberated gazelle, only to be brought to stop by the iron arms of Arnav.
Arnav rains questions on Khushi, questioning her motives, suspecting her integrity, raising finger on her and her sister’s character, all of his accusations are met and answered with polite dignity, respect and quiet desperation. Things go too far when Arnav grabs Khushi, jerks her around, tearing her clothing and pushing her roughly. A shocked khushi quickly covers herself , rushes by and past Arnav who seems taken aback by his actions.
Khushi reaches home, her worst fears confirmed by the gossiping neighbors who are waiting for the proverbial ‘tamasha’. But Khushi’s mother, Garima will not have it. She quickly demands an explanation, which is given by Khushi. Harsh words are spoken that hurts Khushi but Payal’s soft words and her unconditional affection acts as the ointment healing the raw wounds.
While the first episode was ‘ah-hum’ in terms of story, the second episode began with a bang, roaring on all cylinders.
The second episode sets the tone or the dynamics for the emerging relationship between Arnav and Khushi. When Khushi trips, Arnav is the one who arrests her fall, prevents her from injured but does that mean that Arnav will forever play her knight? No, because he will also be the one to give her pain.
When Khushi is escorted away from the premises, Khushi’s odni/dupappata slips, she is left bare and uncovered. A quick shot shows that Arnav unknowingly had stepped on the Odni leading to exposure of Khushi! It establishes two things quickly and efficiently. One, it will be Arnav or due to Arnav that Khushi will lose her dignity. He will be the cause of her distress but at the same time, THAT was a ‘bridal veil’ and it lies under Arnav’s feet hinting that come what may, Khushi’s journey will end at Arnav’s door.
The next important scene in my opinion would be the confrontation. In my earlier post, I had said..Arnav is detached, a granite who rarely shows any emotions. How do you change a person without breaking him ? This scene points to the way, Arnav changes. When Arnav is all fury, assaulting her verbally and even going physical for brief minutes. Khushi’s reactions are total opposite..
Had Khushi stood cheek by jowl and gave it back to Arnav, the same way , it would have fueled his anger further. Had she hit back at Arnav and Arnav’s family using the same caustic words, Arnav would have been quivering with rage..But she does none of this things.. Does that make her weak? NO, Not at all.. In fact, we get a brief glimpse of the strength lying within her slender figure. Nor does she allow her family’s honor to be slandered.. Without crossing her boundaries, without raising her voice and even without using any harsh words Khushi tells him off, reminding him of his own family, of his transgression on another woman. Although it checks him briefly before his temper takes over again, this moment hints at the vulnerability of Arnav and strength of Khushi.
Gathering her scattered courage, Khushi flees while Arnav is left holding the beaded chain that belongs to Khushi..She may fly anywhere, howsoever far but to Arnav she will return..
The Face !
Even though I never realized then, this show was in many aspects shows the first glimmers of an ‘aspirational India’. It stands as a witness to a changing India. And it is best brought out by the reactions of 2 different generation of women in Garima/Buaji vs Payal/Khushi.
The older generation is all about ‘Face’ even if it is beyond their reach, even if it were to push them into poverty, they are willing to sacrifice everything so that their ‘Face’ remains intact in front of the society. The biggest concern is neighbors should not laugh.
The elder generation accept and follow ‘dowry’ system because it is the norm. Not for one moment do they pause to reflect how will a girl live happily amidst a greedy family. They are more into trappings that enhances the value of the family in the society – Boy is educated, working in a govt sector so of course, cutting off your right hand for such an alliance is well deserved. They know somewhere that it is wrong but accept it because it is the norm.
Whereas Khushi and Payal who are untainted by the corruptions of the world have got a clear vision of right and wrong. Most importantly, they have the courage and forbearance to stand by their convictions. Payal despite being shown as a timid, docile girl actually considered the cancellation of wedding, a blessing in disguise! Both have the strength to stand by their conviction and to face the consequences arising out of it.