By Mahvish Ahmed
For some drama serials, telling us that “they lived happily ever after” is just not enough. We want to know exactly how happy it gets, how many kids they have, where these kids go to college and so much more. Such was the case with the recently concluded HUM TV show, Yakeen ka Safar.
Now Wednesdays felt gloomy when we no longer witnessed Zubia’s pretty smile and Dr. Haroon’s lame jokes. So, guess what we did? We went straight to script writer Farhat Ishtiaq, the woman behind it all, and asked her the unanswered questions to our heart’s content.
We also gave her some scenarios which she imaginatively answered. The Humsafar writer is brilliant, warm and surprisingly, super accommodating when it comes to our weird Yaqeen Ka Safar fantasies.
Here is our conversation:
WO: What did Asfandyar actually think when he got the “Love you darling” message from Zubia?
Farhat Ishtiaq: For a moment, he was shocked at Zubia for saying this to him right after he had scolded her. But since he is an intelligent man, he realized it was a mistake and the message was not meant for him. By the way, I wrote this scene based on my own experience when I sent the wrong message to someone thinking I am texting my friend (haha)! These situations can be very embarrassing.
WO: Did Asfandyar and Zubia ever discuss THAT message? Did they laugh over it?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Yes! On the wedding night he showed her the message since he had it saved in his phone and teased her about it.
WO: What was the exact moment when Asfandyar started developing feelings for Zubia?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Well, he was developing a soft corner for her since some time even though he was in denial. But the first time he really noticed her was when she asked him to help Khajista. He was able to see Daniyal in her, as he had also taken a stand to help a girl get justice. And, after that rainy night post the hepatitis camp, he was totally in love.
WO: Did Zubia ever forgive Rehan?
Farhat Ishtiaq: After showing Zubia how weak he was as a brother, she was never really able to forgive him dil se. After all, he had kicked her out of the house in the middle of the night and left her all alone to face the world. However, for duniyadaari, she does keep a relationship with him after her marriage. Aik aurat ka agar maika ho, uskey liye izzat ki baat hoti hai. Dil mein khalish to rahi, but yes she started speaking to Rehan again.
WO: How did Asfandyar save Zubia when she tried to commit suicide? Did she actually jump into the river?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Actually, I had written the scene a little differently – Asfandyar reached Zubia before she could jump and when he gets to her, she faints in his arms and has a nervous breakdown. At that point, she had no control over what she was doing. That’s how scared and panic stricken she was to see Rehan. However, while shooting the scene, it was dramatized a little for television where it seemed as if she did jump and the audience could not figure out how she was saved.
WO: Where did the wedding take place – from Zubia’s house in Karachi or Islamabad?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Zubia agreed to go back to her home in Karachi for the wedding. If I got the chance to write that scene, entering her house where she grew up, where her mother was killed, where she finally saw Abbi acting like a real father to her and the house from which she was kicked out, would have been a very emotional moment for Zubia. Itnay saalon baad ghar jaa ke usay wo tamaam takleef de waaqiyat yaad aatay.
WO: What happened to Rehan’s relationship with (evil) Sheema?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Rehan becomes just like Abbi. My observation is that men eventually treat their wives the same way they have seen their fathers treat their mothers. Though Sheema wouldn’t have been able to do much when Zubia came home for her wedding and re-entered Rehan’s life, she would always remain as bitter. People with so much negativity in them can never change. Usay kabhi apni zyadti ka ehsaas na hota.
WO: Abbi left the house for Zubia in his will. Did she ever claim her right over the house and her mother’s jewelry?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Zubia is not at all materialistic and not one to claim her right over her property. But it is possible that Rehan, realizing his mistakes and as his apology, would have handed over the house to his sister eventually.
Also, if Zubia had claimed her right over the house when she was being kicked out, how would she have met the hero of the story?!
WO: What did Asfandyar give Zubia as moonh dikhaai?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Perhaps a medical book on the liver to remind Zubia of the wrong treatment she gave a liver patient and the scolding she got for that (haha). Of course, this would be just to tease her. After that, he would have given her a piece of jewelry.
WO: What is Dr. Asfandyar’s specialization? How come he handled every surgery?
Farhat Ishtiaq: He is a general surgeon. However, he specializes in the abdomen and hepatitis. That was his main focus since the incidence of this disease is very high in Pakistan’s northern areas.
WO: How did Noori bring the big rifle to a political rally without alerting the security?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Since the play was fiction, we had to take some liberty (haha)! But on a serious note, these things happen in reality. When a person is driven to the point Noori was at, completely broken and hopeless, he does not care of the consequences of his actions. Noori just wanted revenge, even if that cost her life. And that is exactly what she did.
WO: Did Gaiti and Dr. Haroon have more children after their marriage?
Farhat Ishtiaq: You know, that is an area which I could have explored as an entirely new story but I did not have that space while writing my novel. But if I think about it, they would have had a happy marriage and would have had more children. Initially though, it would be tough for Gaiti since learning how to truly love for the second time is difficult for a woman. Aur Gaiti ne Daniyal se shiddat se mohabbat kit thi. So, in the beginning, she would probably think of Daniyal a lot, compare him to Haroon and feel like she is not being faithful to Haroon.
WO: Why was the khala telling the entire family history to an unknown Rashid?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Well, she is shown as a seedhi saadi, ghar mein rehnay wali khatoon and Asfandyar being an intelligent man gets her to say more than she should have to a stranger. However, I’d like to add that sometimes when you write a scene, it is not translated onto the TV screen the way you had imagined. We were probably not able to portray that part the way we had perceived it.
WO: Why did Asfi cancel the wedding if he trusted Zubia all along?
Farhat Ishtiaq: He never stopped trusting her. In fact, it was just the manifestation of his disappointment in the fact that Zubia did not trust him enough to come and tell him that it was her who he had saved from Rameez’s trap several years ago in Karachi.
WO: What is Dr. Asfi smiling at when he looks at Zubia during her first meeting at home with Faryal?
Farhat Ishtiaq: Although both of them had warm feelings towards each other by the time Faryal came back to visit, they had not said anything. Hence, when Zubia cannot help feeling jealous and her feelings are written all over her face, Asfandayar feels happy. Zubia’s behavior confirmed that the feelings of love are not one-sided.
WO: Will you ever consider writing a sequel to Yakeen Ka Safar?
Farhat Ishtiaq: A lot of people are asking me that question (haha)! I won’t say never as you never know what might inspire me to write it someday but as of now there are no plans. Something else MIGHT be cooking though but I cannot say anything just yet.