Every new episode of drama serial Khaani could very well be the last – there is a climax at every crossroad – but then the story takes a new turn for an extension that leaves everyone anticipating more. This is exactly what happened this week. One would have imagined the story to end with Mir Hadi’s sentence, but the story still has two episodes left and the promo for Episode 30 and Mir Hadi’s probable meeting with Khaani – as his last wish – has left viewers on a high point yet again.
When it comes to expectations, one can safely say that the story ended for viewers looking for romance the day Khaani was abducted and then released by Mir Hadi. That was a major turning point of the play. But it continued with a political agenda, zoning into its primary objective: to highlight the corruption and lawlessness in our political system.
This episode took us to the heart of Mir Hadi’s case and once again, he confesses his sins and demands that the judge passes him the harshest form of punishment: the death penalty. While no one can challenge the justice in this sentence, one’s growing sympathy for the character of Mir Hadi also demands a lighter sentence for a man who has admitted to his sins and has been repenting very sincerely. He wants to be punished so he can be pardoned and forgiven (in the eyes of God) for his own wrong doings as well as his parents’. Politically, the play is on the right track.
Emotionally, though, there is a vacuum that one can only hope is filled in the last two episodes, possibly with the Khaani-Mir Hadi meeting. The thing is, Mir Hadi may have realized the magnitude of his crimes and may have confessed, demanding the death sentence, but his actions are motivated by the selfless love he has for Khaani. She has been the beacon of light in his life, the voice that awakened his conscience. And while his initial interest in Khaani was egoistic, it quickly turned into something deeper and pure.
Khaani ‘apparently’ has no feelings except for hatred for Mir Hadi. She has fought, internally and externally, for justice for her brother with Mir Hadi’s conviction since episode one. But she has also witnessed the immeasurable, mad form of love he has for her. While her husband Arham loves her in a calm and stable way, Mir Hadi’s is the more passionate and exciting expression that is defined as ‘ishq’. And one doesn’t think she’s completely immune to it.
Case in point: in earlier episodes, Mir Hadi had started anonymously wooing her, sending flowers and chocolates to her workplace everyday. We saw that she had started falling for her secret admirer just because of these simple acts of affection, until she discovered who he really was. Now we have a man who has volunteered to be hung to make up for his sins and to bring peace to Khaani’s life. He doesn’t want her to be dragged into court and defamed by his lawyer, he says on the stand. It can be assumed, without doubt, that given the power of the Mirs, Khaani and Arham would not have had a chance of winning this case had Mir Hadi not confessed – we see these real life examples everyday. Surely Khaani sees the grand gesture and can sense his love for her.
No one wants Mir Hadi’s sentence over-turned; everyone wants to see justice being served for the crimes he has committed. But his character has evolved since the days of the entitled, privileged, political powerhouse that we saw. The jail scene, in which he sits with his mother, asking if he can sleep with his head in her lap, points to acute emotional deprivation in his life. One feels for this murderer, which may be unfair but at the same time human. Mir Hadi is a changed man who has been cleansed of all evil and has learnt to love selflessly. And Khaani needs to reciprocate in some way.
The possibly last meeting between Mir Hadi and Khaani, in the next episode, should be the emotional hinge that one has been waiting for for weeks.
- This article was first published in Instep Today on June 20, 2018