Has the embargo on Pakistani artists in India lifted? The Zee Network has just announced a series with Pakistan’s top actress Mahira Khan as a prominent part of it. It is titled Yaar Julahay, a dramatic series spread across 12 episodes The name of the series is inspired by a Gulzar poem and pays a tribute to writers who craft stories with the deftness of master weavers. The first episode featuring Mahira Khan will air on May 15, 2021, at Tata Sky Theatre at 2 pm and 8 pm. Mahira will be reading Ahmad Nadeem Qasmi's classic story, 'Guriya.'
Guriya highlights the story of two best friends Mehra and Bano. Bano has a doll (Guriya) that resembles Mehra but Mehra doesn't like that doll at all. With time their fondness and hate for the doll grow many folds. Towards the end comes an unorthodox twist to the storyline that subtly unfolds the mystery around the doll. Yaar Julahay also brings to life the stories of progressive Urdu and Hindi writers like Gulzar, Saadat Hasan Manto, Ismat Chughtai, Munshi Premchand, Amrita Pritam, Qurratulain Haider, Balwant Singh, Asad Muhammad Khan, Ghulam Abbas, Rajinder Singh Bedi and Intezar Hussain. The readers will be stars like Sarmad Khoosat, Sarwat Gilani, Nimra Bucha, Fawad Khan, Sania Saeed, Irfan Khoosat, Yasra Rizvi, Samiya Mumtaz, and Faisal Qureshi.
Shailja Kejriwal, Chief Creative Officer - Special Projects, ZEE says, “Each episode of ‘Yaar Julahay’ features the immersive reading of a remarkable story that is as unique and complex as the subcontinent we live in. Each one of the featured writers has processed reality through characters that we can still identify with. It was a joy to work on these classic tales with Kanwal and Sarmad Khoosat because we have collaborated with them before and they always approach a project with a certain artistic sensitivity and deep respect for the material they are working with. Their sensibility was needed for a project as unique as this.”
Speaking on the development a source from the central government tell me, “The embargo on Pakistani artists was always a moral issue. At the time when hostilities were at their highest Bollywood filmmakers like Karan Johar were inviting actors from across the border to work in the country. The call to boycott Pakistani artists was never legally binding.”
Image source: Instagram/mahirahkhan
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