The 90s was the decade of cheesy Bollywood romances - DDLJ, Kuch kuch hota hai, Mohabbatein etc . The common elements in them : SRK and mushy dialogues - sometimes so cheesy that you had to sit with bread in your hand to grab the extra cheese !
I always wanted to combine all these into an ultimate herculean mega romantic fest. And got a chance, when the other day me and my good friend were discussing such a 90s story - for her. So, Ms R .. heres to you: (tried to keep cheesi-ness at minimum.. but well.....)
In the capital of the land of Oscar winning Bhojpuri cinema i.e. Uttar Pradesh, there lived a simple and sweet girl named Anjali. She had a smile to kill for. She was a normal girl-next-door with normal dreams such as having unabated lifetime supply of chocolates. She had read every Mills and Boons novel and had normal 'fantasies'. The most priceless but normal dreams were reserved for her prince charming. She truly believed in the normal age old funda - 'Someone somewhere is definitely made for you' .
After finishing her grads, Anjali took admission into JNU. Yes, the other mini-Kolkata of Delhi apart from C.R. Park. The place which is the hub of "I wont shave until Naxaliites and Kashmiris get freedom" leftist intellectual dudes and smokin hot leftist intellectual chicks. Such was the new world of Anjali. She wasnt at all interested in politics for her eyes were always searching for her prince (not the kid who fell into a pit & became famous). Everytime she thought about 'him', a creepy yet soulful Yash chopra movie type background music with Lata Mangeshkar's voice mixed in that began to rang in her ears. She was becoming restless day by day waiting for her prince and thats when she became an addict - of facebook and especially Mafia Wars & Farmville. While she owned huge green farms in Farmville, her offline life was not all green.
Anjali saw him there - at Shillong University- where she had gone for synopsis related work. He was wearing white clothes and was playing violin while saying "Insaan mar jaate hain par Mohabbatein kabhi nahi marti (People may die but not the romances)". He suddenly looked up and found her looking at him. Their eyes met and both knew- it was love at first sight. Anjali sort of blushed as she saw him coming towards her. He shook her hand and said " Hi. I am Raj Aryan. Naam toh suna hoga?". He also said, "I have a world famous blog 'What the hell is going on?'. Naam toh suna hoga?" She wanted to say 'Ghanta world famous!' but couldnt. There was something in his eyes - besides a tiny speck of hair - magic. But she had to go as she had work. She introduced herself and left while he stood there staring. He didnt even notice when a bird relieved itself on his white shirt.
Next few days were magical for Anjali. She used to meet Raj everyday at university but still they didnt say those three magical words (No! Not "whats your mail-id?") - 'I love you' - to each other. They both were lacking the courage. But both knew it nevertheless. Both had even dreamt of a romantic duet in Panjab's 'Sarso ke khet'. But couldnt tell each other.
And finally the day arrived when she was going back. He stood there outside the airport's departure gates watching her leave. Suddenly he said to himself "Anjali! Turn back." . And she did. Turned back, smiled and waved goodbye. And he knew she definitely loved him. But they still didnt say that to each other.
Back in Delhi, she returned to her normal JNU life but couldnt forget Raj. Life was all OK until one day her family told her that they have created her profile on shaadi.com and expect her to marry soon. She was dejected but couldnt muster the courage to tell her folks about Raj for she herself wasnt sure whether Raj loved her.
And then it happened one night. Raj called and finally said 'I love you'. He had to drink 3 beers and 1 quarter vodka to do it but he did. Tears came running down Anjali's cheeks. She was in seventh heaven. She decided at once that she'll tell her parents about Raj.
"NO! Not Raj Aryan!" , Anjali's father screamed while throwing Raj's picture away. Anjali was shocked at this. Her father continued, "Do you know who he is?". Before Anjali could say anything, he said, "He is the son of my bitterest enemy!". He, then, told her an old family secret. A secret which had blood and emotions written all over it. He told her how Raj's grandfather had defeated his father - Anjali's grandfather - in a reality show named 'Uttar Pradesh Idol". Since then, the enmity has been running through generations and he'll never allow her to marry Raj Aryan. She cried and pleaded but her father tore apart Raj's pic, broke her phone and thundered that he'll fix Anjali's marriage with the first guy who contacts him after seeing her shaadi.com profile.
Anjali was getting married soon - at her hometown - Lucknow. Her father had fixed her up with a doctor from Bhopal. Upon hearing this, her friends in JNU arranged a candle-light protest march at the campus in order to protest against this act. That didnt help but got Barkha Dutt to interview them anyway; so they were happy. When Raj got to know this (upon watching NDTV where Dutt was interviewing the protesters), he decided at once that he should get his love back. He booked his tickets and flew to Delhi at once. From there, he reached Lucknow- the same day Anjali was to get married- and didnt waste anytime. He then took out his iPhone, accessed his FB account and went to Anjali's now dormant profile. There he saw her address and at once declared " Main aa raha hoon Anjali! Main aa raha hoon!".
Anjali was sitting sadly by her window when she suddenly saw a rickshaw stopping just near her house gates and Raj stepping down from it. She couldnt believe her eyes. Tears again started rolling down her cheeks. Her mother who had come into the room a while ago noticed all this and thought about her youthful days. She decided that her daughter wont marry against her wishes. She was also crying but she had a mission now. She went down, paid the rickshaw fare and secretly brought Raj to Anjali's room.
And so, here they were. Anjali, her mom & Raj - all crying. Suddenly Anjali's mom spoke to Raj (while crying) : "Raj, meri beti ko bhaga le ja. No-one will understand your love here. Run away from these weasels". To which Raj replied (while crying): Nahi maa. I thought about this earlier but ab nahin. I will talk to her dad and sort everything like a real man. Anjali then spoke up (while crying): "But if you go overboard in behaving like a man, my dad will simply contact his khap pals and well.. you know what they will do". Raj (little worried and still crying): "Trust me Anjali. Let me talk to babuji".
And so Raj bravely took his steps towards realising his true love. He went to Anjali's dad and told him how much he loved her. He said, "Babuji, hum ek baar jeete hain, ek baar marte hain, pyar bhi ek baar hota hai aur shaadi bhi (agar divorce na ho). Main apki beti ko bahut khush rakhoonga - har tarah se".
But Babuji was not in the mood to listen. He was getting angrier by the minute. After Raj finished speaking, babuji slowly came towards him. The silence and the tension was killing everyone. And then, babuji did it. He broke the silence by tightly slapping Raj and ordering his goons (hired for one day from ICICI bank's recovery branch) to beat Raj till he forgets Anjali.
The goons didnt think twice. They went all blue and black on Raj. Anjali couldnt do anything but pleading helplessly to her father to stop them. She even said she will marry that Bhopal doctor if he spares Raj. Her father relented upon hearing that and ordered the ICICI goons to stop and told Raj to go & never come back.
Raj stood up all bleeding. Blood was oozing out from every corner of his body. His white clothes and his violin were all soaked in blood. He looked at Anjali one more time and thought , "Saala! Jab mummyji keh rahi thi tabhi bhaga le jaata. Ghanta herogiri". Thinking this, he faded away from the scene while Anjali stood there crying. Her mother was also crying. And her little sister too. Their cute white pug was also sad. Basically, everyone was majorly sad except the angry dad.
It was around 8 PM and baaraat was standing right at Anjali's door. Anjali , all decked up for marriage, was understandably sad. Before going, Raj had told her he will be catching a train for Delhi and leaving her life forever at 10 PM. She was sad but couldnt cry as she didnt want to ruin the makeup. Ultimately, after all the shaadi rituals, the time for "saat phere" arrived. The doctor from Bhopal, whose name was Rahul, was upbeat (not for the marriage but the first night ahead) but a little suspicious too as Anjali was looking very sad. While the priest was chanting away shlokas, Rahul's eyes were fixed on Anjali. He finally asked her whats the matter. Hearing this, Anjali started crying and told him everything. Rahul smiled and told her, "Jo pyaar main tumhari aankhon mein apne liye dekhna chahta tha, wo maine Raj ke liye dekh liya hai. Lets go to the station at once". Everyone said WTF! Anjali said "Yeah baby!". Her dad shouted"Rahul Kamine ! You dare not". But who can stop two people in love from meeting?
Rahul & Anjali reached the platform just in time - 9.55 PM. When she couldnt find Raj in crowd, she just shouted his name (while crying). Suddenly, she saw Raj's blood soaked head popping out from a sleeper coach for Delhi bound train. She was so happy and crying. Rahul had the "Fuck My Life" expression on his face but was still happy and crying. Raj always cried no matter what. But before Anjali could run towards her lover, a hand - that of her dad - grabbed her arm from behind and stopped her. She kept on pleading with her dad to let go while he just stood there staring at Raj. The tension was increasing. The signal turned to green and the train began to move out of the platform. Anjali was still pleading. Babuji was still staring at Raj. Rahul still had FML expression. Other people in the crowd too grabbed popcorns and Coke.
And suddenly, Anjali's dad let go off her saying, "Ja beti. Sirf Raj hi tujhe khush rakh sakta hai. Ja, jee le apni zindagi". Everyone was shocked. So was Anjali. But she started running towards Raj who extended his arm towards her. He shouted "I LOVE YOU". She shouted, "SAALE! PULL THE CHAIN YOU MORON". Raj did that and the train stopped. Anjali came running and stopped just near to him. They both looked at each other and smiled. They didnt kiss as they wanted to eat Chlormint first for fresh breath. But nevertheless, they were happy. They boarded the train together. Later TT fined Anjali for travelling ticketless but nevertheless, her fairytale had come true. She was with her prince charming …. finally.
And they lived happily ever after.....
As they say,