As I sat back to take in the nightly episode of the drama that has aroused a deep Ishq inside of me, I took a moment to digest what had just passed on the screen – Wow! said my inner feminist … and wow again!
Ishq Jalebi shows us importance of family, consent, but more significantly, the need for physical attraction between a couple before they enter into a marital contract – do you agree?
Ishq Jalebi is not only highlighting the importance of consent
but also significance of physical attraction between 2 young people when getting married. Bela is repulsed by her fiancé, and she needs no other reason to say NO to the marriage but that. When Hassan grabbed hold of her hand, it was something we had seen before, right?
Harassment lingered in the air.
The look of sheer repulsion on Bela’s face – Madiha Imam, full marks to you there could have been the end. That in itself, was a strong message. But then, writer Saima Akram Chaudhry goes one step further and shows Basim holding Bela’s hand – No repulsion there? notes Bela.
It’s not just about consent folks
It’s about not feeling anything physical for a man you are promised into wedlock. It’s about him exercising his right to chat you up, claim what is his (right) after he slips a ring onto your finger, and you, still grappling with – “What is this thing called attraction?”
Bela is shown to be a simple, unaffected girl. Growing up amidst cousins, a loving family and a doting grandparent has filled her life with familial love and precious ties, a super glue bond with Bao Ji but – she is not wise to the ways of the world. Neither is she physically experienced to understand that what she’s feeling for Hassan is real, jayez, and justified.
Bela is not aware that she can say no to a relationship for the mere fact that she does not like the idea of engaging in any physical – translate, tactile relationship with her fiance. But these feelings will come, say our elders. Ahem – heard that one before?
Oh well, not always. And Thank God Basim is there to pick up on it. Although, who will ever listen to poor Basim,
Now comes the twist in the tale
Hassan is seen to be previously engaged in another relationship (promo thanks), that will probably end up being a big reason for breaking the engagement.
The point is, that Bela should have the right to refuse her rishta, regardless of the ‘other woman’ excuse.
Can she do it? That is the question. But two thumbs up to the writer and director for steering our thoughts in this direction. Ishq Jalebi is turning on sweet love at every post iftar chai and of course, I watch it with a meethi, orange sheeray mein doobi huwi jalebi by my side -after all, it’s Ramzan, thora sa meetha Ishq toh jayez hai!