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I am currently watching an Indian Show on StarOne called Geet, Hui Sabse Parayi (Geet Becomes Estranged from Everyone). The show stars Drashti Dhami, playing the titular character Geet Handa, and Gurmeet Choudary, playing Maan Singh Khurana. This Indian show started airing in April of 2010, and is still going strong. It has been a long time since I’ve watching a currently airing Indian soap, and I am watching with a wary eye, because I know how quickly Indian soaps can let down their viewers. So far, I have been mostly satisfied.
The first episode starts with a young woman being hunted in the dark of the night. When she is found by her hunters, she is brutally murdered. This young woman calls out Geet’s name as the sword comes slashing down on her.
The next morning, the audience is introduced to Geet. Geet lives in Hoshiarpur, a small town in India. She is an 18-year-old girl; she is someone who wants to get an education, who takes care of her younger cousins, who is oppressed by the men of her family. Geet has grown up in a family where men do not consider education to be necessary for women, where the men want to isolate the women in the home, and where women are a burden to be quickly married off. If any woman steps out of line, then she will be “taken care of”.
In the beginning of the drama, there is talk of Geet getting married and going to Canada. Even though Geet does not want to get married, her family forces her to agree and they marry her off quickly and quietly. Geet falls in love with her fiancé, Dev Khurana. He is a man that seems to be the complete opposite of the type of men she has seen thus far in life. She is romanced with roses and gentleness, and gives her heart away. But things are not as they seem. After her wedding night, Geet is drugged and abandoned at the airport. Despite all evidence to the contrary, Geet holds out hope of Dev’s return until she is faced with the reality that he fraudulently got her signature and sold off her property. It is only then that she faces the truth that Dev married her for her money, jewelry, and land. To add to her misery, Geet realizes that she is pregnant and her family wants her to abort her child. When Geet refuses, her brother and his group hunt her down and try to kill her, in the exact same way that they dispatched the young woman at the beginning of the drama.
While all of these events are happening, Geet also happens to meet a stranger, who reluctantly saves her the second time she is in danger. When she first runs into him she is being chased by hooligans who probably have all sorts of nefarious plans for her, but this stranger refuses to step in and assist Geet. While trying to escape these hooligans, Geet falls into the water. Only then does the stranger step in and save Geet from drowning. What I don’t get is why this stranger doesn’t step in the first time, and for whatever reason, why did he step in the second time? What? Possible rape was none of his business, but certain death was? That scene always confuses me.
Geet continues to run into this man everywhere. He also sees her getting married, without either of them realizing it. He sees her on her wedding night, pre-consummation, when she is running around, looking for Dev. He also turns out to be the man who bought her land. And he is there when Geet discovers (from Dev’s wife, Naintara) that Dev already had a wife, and married Geet only for the money. She later discovers this man to be Maan Singh Khurana. He is bitter about life, only wants the land he paid for, and who seems to hate women. His actions, when he is trying to get Geet to sign over her land, are reckless and insensitive to Geet’s or any woman’s plight in a small town. Despite the fact that he is in a small town and knowing about small-town mentality, he deliberately riles up Geet’s family against her, humiliates them in front of the towns people, traps her against a tree in public, and carries her in his arms. This is where he is reckless and insensitive. He puts Geet’s life in danger, and doesn’t even seem to care. One could argue that, as compared to Dev’s crime, his behavior is less criminal because he doesn’t intend to put her life in danger, but still it wasn’t right. And this only succeeds in emphasizing how bad it was for Geet and the other female members of the Handa family; when a stranger’s behavior could make Geet’s life hell.
But, when her brother decides to wash away the stain on their family honor with her blood, Maan is the one who saves her by putting his own life in danger. He takes care of her when she is passed out, and gives her the strength to fight her own family. Granted, he doesn’t do this willingly or gently, but his words light a fire inside of Geet. Geet comes back home, has her crazy brother arrested, and decides to leave her family, saying that she no longer has a family, especially not the kind of family that would directly or indirectly plan on killing their own daughter for their honor.
Geet then comes to Delhi, to start a new life. She comes into contact with Maan Singh Khurana once more. Maan had left her in Hoshiarpur, thinking that she would meekly return home and live life under her brother’s oppression. She begins to work for Maan, and Maan finds himself fascinated by this woman in his life. He slowly falls under her spell, despite his efforts to resist her charms. He forgives her for her bad coffee, for the roses that he hates, for ordering Desi food for an elegant party, etc. When he does fire her for her supposed incompetence, he regrets it immediately.
Geet then goes to work for Savitri Devi, a woman that she met in Maan’s office. Geet only finds out that Savitri Devi is Maan’s grandmother after she has moved into their outhouse. This forced proximity drive Maan and Geet closer, and Geet becomes jealous when Maan pretends to be interested in other women. But, knowing that she is pregnant, Geet pushes Maan away when he is about to confess his feelings. Maan, to make his grandmother happy, had previously agreed to bring a fiancé for his grandmother to meet. When his pretend fiancé runs away on the eve of the introduction, Maan manipulates Geet into becoming his pretend fiancé. When Geet realizes that Maan has become so important to her and that he may love her too, she tells him that she is pregnant.
Maan is shocked and feels betrayed. Despite his feelings of being ill-used, he tends to her when she sickens, and knows that he will continue to protect her because she cannot take care of herself. When Geet tells him the truth of how she became pregnant, Maan believes her and tells her that he wants to remain engaged. His doubts are swept away when he faces her truth, and he realizes that he would rather be a part of Geet’s future than worrying about what is past.
On the day that Geet and Maan are about to be officially engaged, Geet finds out that Dev is Maan’s brother. With no recourse left to her, Geet runs away, leaving Maan confused and worried. In the one or 1 ½ day that they are apart, Maan has an accident and Geet tells Maan’s entire company and Dev that she is pregnant with Dev’s child. When Maan regains consciousness, Geet is back by his side, but can only tell him that she didn’t want him getting humiliated in the future because of her past, so she ran away.
When Maan comes back home, Geet finally tells him that Dev, his brother, was the man that used, abused and abandoned her. Maan is shocked, heartbroken, and then resolved to get justice for his Geet. He calls the police and has Dev and Naintara arrested for their fraud. Due to misunderstandings, Geet thinks that Maan is only marrying her so that he can get her to drop her case against his brother. Despite his protestations, she leaves him. Maan is furious and decides to make her pay. Eventually, the two realize that they may have gone too far in their need to outdo the other, and they reunite, knowing that all they need is the other in their life. Geet apologizes for misunderstanding Maan, and Maan reveals his fears about Geet’s ability to love him when he is related to a man like Dev.
Maan is there to protect his Geet, even from a murderous attack from Naintara. He fills her maang with his blood (in a sense, marrying her), and promises her that they will soon get married in front of the world. Currently, Naintara’s brother, Arjun, has entered the show, vowing to ruin the Khuranas for what they have done to his poor, beleaguered sister, and to begin his revenge, he has become the Khurana’s wedding planner and has started to “seduce” Annie, Maan’s sister, into falling in love with him. Geet and Maan are eagerly looking forward to their wedding and saying their “I love yous” to each other.
The show has a lot going for it. The intense chemistry between the main couple makes Geet, Hui Sabse Parayi a treat to watch. I also like the fact that the creative team had decided to concentrate on them falling in love, so that we got to see the gradual process. One of the most annoying things about dramas is when there is love at first sight, because, really, what is that love based on? In this drama, we get to see why this couple fell in love. Their comic interactions, as well as their romantic moments are the reason I keep on coming back for more. The characters of Geet and Maan are wonderful, and this is the first time I do not see a character having any irritating behaviors or habits that I could pick at. I loved how Geet was willing to stand up for her unborn child, even when it meant her death, and I loved how Maan was willing to stay by Geet, when he found out that she was pregnant but did not know anything else. I love Maan’s dadi, who supports Maan and Geet and never brings up the issues of the difference in their class status, which is usually a rich topic in Indian dramas. I also appreciate the ensemble cast that has been assembled for Khurana Constructions, and enjoy Adi, Pinky, Romeo, etc. when they are on the screen.
One of the characters that sticks out in Geet is Meera, played by Perneet Chauhan. She is someone from Dev’s past; a woman that is his close friend, and someone who loved Dev. Apparently, Dev was as much of an idiot back then as he is now, because he chose Naintara over Meera. Meera comes into the story when Dev has started to regret his actions and wants to atone for his mistakes. She helps Dev in finding Geet, and bolstering his faltering courage so that he can go through with his atonement. But then she finds out that the man she loves not only stole Geet’s money but also stole her virginity. Perneet did wonderful acting in this scene; the shock, knowledge of betrayal and disgust on her face ably revealed Meera’s disgust with Dev’s actions. Despite all of that, she reluctantly supports him after he comes out of jail. Ultimately, her character disappears with no resolution. I liked Meera, and hoped that they would keep her around as a supportive friend to Geet, and future love interest for Dev, since the creative unit intends to save Dev in the end. But that didn’t happen, and Perneet disappeared from the show.
But, the show also has other issues. In the nine months that the drama has been airing, the time span in the drama has only been around three, maybe four months. The drama is moving at a snail’s pace, and sometimes tends to take one to two steps back before moving down the same path once more. I haven’t been irritated by it because I’ve watched 8 months of episodes in one month, so a lot of stuff has happened for me. But I can understand why regular viewers (who have been with the show from the beginning) may have abandoned this show for its lack of movement.
When Maan found out that Dev was the culprit, the story stalled. Geet has not been able to get justice; Dev and Naintara are out of jail, and it seems that the actor playing Dev will be leaving the show, thus ensuring that there may not be any satisfactory closure to the Dev and Geet story. One of the issues I had with the drama was that Dev and Naintara deliberately picked Geet’s family, knowing the kind of people they were. They knew what could have happened to Geet, and even then, Dev slept with Geet. That requires some sort of punishment, and his remorse after the fact (which truly came out of nowhere) changes nothing; if he had been the kind of man that could be remorseful about such an act, then he would have been the kind of the man that could never perform such an act as “rape”. It’s that discontinuity in character that confuses me, and I hope that Geet’s creative team deals with this.
I do hope that the show gets moving forward, but I do not want to see the same old tired clichés appearing, that other Indian soaps are so inundated with. One of the refreshing things about this drama was that we didn’t even meet the hero until a month into the show, and then, the main couples love story wasn’t hurried along. It’s refreshing that we don’t see a crazy mother-in-law, and that the drama is dealing with issues such as honor killings. Hopefully, the show will move back towards its roots, instead of going down the well-trodden path of other dramas. No more characters popping up out of nowhere (like Maan’s sister, who was never mentioned), and no more irrational behavior on our beloved characters’ parts (when Geet broke up with Maan). The show has done a wonderful job in building this relationship between Maan and Geet, and they’ve shown the foundation of their “rishta” is very strong; that does not leave much room for petty jealousies and misunderstandings forcing the couple apart, and I hope nothing like that happens.
I hope the show deals with issues mentioned in the past, and issues that need to be taken care of now. For example, Maan and Geet still aren’t married; get them married. And we still don’t know what happened in Maan’s past. What happened a month before Geet met Maan, that forced him to leave his home and move into the outhouse. This is a man that worships his grandmother, but he was unwilling to listen to her about what happened in the family. We don’t know where Vicky, Maan’s other brother, is. We don’t know Maan’s past regarding Sameera (the reason that Maan hated all women). There are also a missing sister (maybe step) and a stepmother in the equation. Hopefully, once Maan and Geet are married, we will get some of these issues resolved. The story has taken a step back to these older issues by bringing back Geet’s psycho brother, who has restarted his attempts to kill Geet.
In one way, nine months is a long time for the story to not have covered these issues, but because only three months have passed since Geet met Maan, it’s not that long, either. I have high hopes for the future, and I hope that Geet’s creative team doesn’t botch the drama up.
Here’s to Geet and Maan or, as fans like to call them, Maneet.
I will provide continuing updates on the show as the story moves along. If you are interested in seeing what is currently happening, click on the link below: