After the success of “Sabaat” in 2020, Ameer Gilani and Mawra Hocane became a hit pair with Pakistani drama fans and all eyes were on their next show together. Well, it has finally arrived. “Neem” stars Mawra Hocane, Ameer Gilani, Syed Jibran, Arsalan Naseer, Shamil Khan, Manzar Sehbai and others in prominent roles. The story has been written by Kashif Anwar and directed by Shahzad Kashmiri. The story promotes the importance of education.
In episode one, we are introduced to Zimal (Mawra Hocane), a young woman from Kashmir who studies education in Lahore (under the mentorship of Manzar Sehbai’s character), hoping to bring quality education to those back in Kashmir. Zimal comes from an area that needs a lot of help, but is fortunate enough to belong to a privileged group. However, Zimal does not discriminate and feels it’s her job to ensure those around her are happy and comfortable rather than focusing on her own material needs. Zimal is engaged to Shazil (Arsalan Naseer), but wants to complete her goals before getting married, asking him to wait for two years.
Unknown to her, Ashhad (Ameer Gilani) has been pining away for her for years, a man from a lower class with a stammer. He has given up on his dreams of marrying Zimal, but continues to harbor love for her in his heart. Ameer Gilani is a treat to watch on screen after a long gap, is sweet in this role and portrays this character in a natural way.
Of course, enter the “villain” of the story – Karamat (Syed Jibran). This is man of arrogance, a man who believes himself to be better than those of a lower financial and social standing. Syed Jibran makes the greatest impact in this first episode, Karamat a true antagonist, a man to be hated – and feared. Credit must also be given to Shamil Khan who is performing the role of Asad, Ashhad’s older brother, in a sincere way. Manzar Sehbai has a small part in this episode, but his words set the stage for the theme of the show – the importance of good educators to create a positive impact on students.
While Zimal dreams of changing the education system, Karamat will not only deter her, he also seems to have his sights set on her. How will Zimal’s dreams be fulfilled? And how will Ashhad and Zimal’s paths cross (eventually)? “Neem” has set up a strong foundation in episode one and promises to be a journey worth watching.