“Raqs E Bismil” is a story about unattainable love. Starring Imran Ashraf, Sarah Khan, Momin Saqib, Anoushay Abbasi, Mehmood Aslam, Javeria Abbasi, Nida Mumtaz, Furqan Qureshi, Saleem Mairaj, Gul E Rana and other talented actors, the story follows the love story between Musa and Sakina, two individuals who are poles apart. The show has been written by Hashim Nadeem and directed by Wajahat Rauf.
In episode 4, Musa (Imran Ashraf) is shocked when he sees Zohra (Sarah Khan) at the party and angrily drags her out by force before bombarding her with hateful words regarding her “lies” and “deceit.” Zohra rightfully sets Musa straight, telling him she never lied to him and invited him to the event so that her truth would be revealed. Musa taunts her on her choice of clothing, but Zohra does not back down, making it clear that she dresses modestly to save herself from the eyes of those like him. She also points out that his so-called claims of “love” were fickle and fake, based entirely on her clothing while not knowing her at all. Musa freezes, hearing and registering these words before being dragged away by the police.
Of course, it does not go unnoticed by viewers that the treatment meted out by Musa’s father towards Musa is much different from that meted out to Sakina (Anoushay Abbasi) for the same “crime.” Musa was out chasing an “inappropriate” woman while Sakina was attempting to marry a non-Syed man. And yet Musa is given the chance to confess, to explain himself and to continue on with his life with little punishment – while Sakina was essentially given the sentence of death before marrying her off by force. The entire situation with Musa is brushed under the carpet, hidden from the outside world as though it never happened.
Musa has always been a person who did not believe in the concept of love, the idea that one will see a person and fall for them without the two individuals being on the same page. But Sakina’s curse has come back to haunt Musa in the form of Zohra, a woman from an entirely different background from him, a woman with morals and values that are different than his and a woman who would not fit into his life easily at all. He is now caught in the very place that Sakina found herself – in love with someone who is “inappropriate” for marriage. Zohra is also feeling badly for what happened, as she never meant for Musa to be arrested. His emotions and passion have won her over to an extent and she has already developed a soft corner for him. Musa is unable to let go of his love for Zohra even finding out about her reality and he visits her home, paying for a few moments to speak to her.
Sakina is internally fuming over her life, secretly plotting to meet Kamran again in the hopes that he will remain loyal to her despite her marriage. She believes he will come to rescue her, though it’s clear that she will be let down and will ultimately see the sincerity in Isa’s (Momin Saqib) love. Sakina is also behaving warmly towards Isa in order to fish out information on Musa’s troubles, wanting to add oil to the fire. While Musa is the “hero” of the show, Sakina does not come across as a villain because she is doing what’s “fair” to her. Her life was ripped apart by these same people who are now covering for their son/brother. Musa was the perpetrator in stopping her marriage and Sakina is unable to forget this and is out for revenge. Anoushay Abbasi and Momin Saqib share such wonderful chemistry that even their 1-2 short scenes in the episode are ones that are memorable.
It goes unsaid that Imran Ashraf and Sarah Khan are performing wonderfully, giving strong performances, particularly Imran Ashraf. Musa is a complex character and Imran is doing a great job allowing those different sides to come out. Saleem Mairaj also resurfaces in this episode, making an impact with his short and not-yet-defined role. He has some great dialogues and, as always, has a strong screen presence. The next episode will see the introduction of Furqan Qureshi’s character and it seems as though Musa will be forced into getting engaged against his wishes. “Raqs E Bismil” has a wonderful charm about it and a lot of that is due to the cinematography and how the show has been shot, the visuals and the costumes. It’s pleasing to look at. Overall, this show continues delivering strong episodes and leaving the viewer wanting more.