Ace Pakistani actor-director, Sarmad Sultan Khoosat, whose TV hits Humsafar and Shehr-e-Zaat have made waves across the border, feels that Indian TV needs to brush up its story lines.
Sarmad who is currently in India to attend the ongoing Urdu festival, Jashn-e-Rekhta also criticised Pakistani TV during a discussion titled Zindagi Ki Soorat-Giri: TV Par Urdu Ke Rang. He emphasised the need for better characterisation and effective writing in both the countries.
“I feel we have finished the variety and diversity of stories in both the countries. India, whose cinema is doing great with films like Masaan, The Lunchbox, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, TV has now become monotonous from some time,” he said.
“Characterisation and storytelling have suffered so much that the language is left much behind. The depth is missing in characters on both the sides,” Sarmad was quoted as saying by the Indian Express.
The Manto actor finds it surprising that Indian television isn’t making progress and is showing regressive content as opposed to cinema that is constantly trying to break stereotypes. “Progress happened on Indian TV faster and earlier than us. So, I find this a little surprising that in a scene, where cinema is saying so much, an advertisement can break boundaries, stereotypes… then why do marketeers bring regression in television dramas. The narrative here offers nothing new,” he said.
The purpose of the discussion was to highlight the evolution of Urdu through TV shows, both Pakistani and Indian.
Sarmad emphasised on the correct use of the language. He believes that the writers of today have taken a “lazy approach” to make dialogues more popular among the audience. “Not speaking in one language without bringing in another is an expression of today but the dialogue has suffered because of that… We never read badly or loosely-written novels but to make dialogues comprehensible to all we have taken a lazy approach. I have seen this happening both in India and Pakistan.”
The acclaimed filmmaker who has already made a name for himself across the border with his directorial Manto was accompanied by Pakistani actor Sania Saeed and popular Indian actors Kanwaljit Singh and Lubna Salim.