Child abuse has unfortunately become a common issue prevalent in our society. Earlier, a number of dramas have been made to bring out awareness among people.Â Udaari, a popular Hum TV dramaÂ was one that revolved around the same issue of silent and untreated sexual abuse. Now, it seemsÂ Meri Guriya is taking it a notch further. But, will it be successful in changing the mindset?
Shedding light on the aftermath of rape and harassment, it also interestingly shows the warped mindsets of people despite living in the 20th century. The drama takes inspiration from the 6-year-old Zainab Ansari’s tragic death and how we all still manage to live in dark times.
What sets the premise of Meri Guriya,Â however,Â are the poignant words that reveal the haunting reality of our society.
Aisi hi duniya mein rehte hain hum
(Such is the world we live in)
Jaisay sheron se bharey jungle mein lachar hiran
(Like defenseless deer in a forest teeming with lions)
Much like Udaari,Â the story revolves around a young girl named Abda, whose innocence and friendly demeanor make her the apple of everyone’s eye. She’s the youngest of three siblings and is adored by her mother Shenaz â€“ played by Sania Saeed. It appears that her character draws inspiration from ChuiyyaÂ in Deepa Mehta’s critically acclaimed film Water. She soon finds a friend in Sonya Hussyn whom she fondly refers to as dulhan (bride) and instantly takes a liking to her.
Dabeer’s character played by Mohsin Abbas Haider, on the other hand, comes across as alarming since the start. He’s shown to be a timid person, who’s forever scared and referred to as a coward by his family. He’s forced into marrying Sonya Hussyn as the oddity in his behavior becomes a real concern for his parents where they think a marriage would only normalise his situation. Soon into marriage, Dabeer is struck by a question of ending his marriage as suggested by his wife who’s shown as a bit of a rebel and not the ideal dulhan type.
The truth behind Dabeer’s peculiarity unravels when his obsession with dolls comes into play and his inquisitiveness regarding his wife’s friend AbdaÂ makes him plot evil ideas in his head.
Abda hails from a conservative background where all she witnesses is her grandmother forever looking down upon her and her sisters. She’s obsessed with the thought of having a male heir which her daughter in-law fails to deliver and never hears the end of it. Shenaz wants her daughters to have everything which she couldn’t have and that just gives a fair reason for the family to badmouth her decisions.
The subject of Meri Guriya is hauntingly dark but portrays the bitter reality of our fast changing worlds. Sania Saeed in the role of a helpless mother couldn’t be more natural and relatable to so many women who live under such an influence. Sonya Hussyn’s role as a concerned friend makes one yearn for a neighbor who’s your go-to person and comes as a savior in difficult times. Mohsin Abbas however takes the cake playing the role one couldn’t imagine him being a part of. Known for his singing and perfect comic timing, he’s the face which will make you cringe in discomfort.
Has it been able to move us beyond just a myopic view of abuse? Definitely!