My (re)take on Sameer and Nandini, the characters of Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
Hum dil de chuke sanam. I must have watched this movie at least 2 dozen times. And I have always adored the ending. I always wanted Nandidi to end up with Vanraj as he went to great lengths to unite his wife to her lover. His love is pure, sacrificial and out of this world. The pain that Vanraj feels and what he chooses to do, for his wife selflessly, wrenches the heart of the viewers too. Maybe that is where Vanraj pulls the viewers to his side from Sameer. And this is why when I choose to watch the movie from certain point, I always skip the part where Nandini and Sameer fall in love and watch it from the part where Vanraj is introduced. Because the scene, story and character are well shaped into the theme of the movie by then. Movie gets intense and I am a big fan of intense stories with depth. If watching from the middle counts, I have already watched the movie at least 50 times. Thanks to Vanraj and his pure love.
But today, as I assess Sameer and Nandini, what wrong does Sameer do? Sameer; who loves Nandini whole-heartedly waits for her no matter what. When her father asks him to leave as his 'GuruDakshina', ne never complains. He respects her father throughout and leaves Nandini's home without creating a fuss. He continues to write for her even from Italy and always dreams of reuniting with her. Who wouldn't dream of their beloved and wouldn't want to get reunited? I certainly would. When you know 'she is the one', you will not think twice to do things for her. Sameer does the same thing. You cannot say his love is not worthy to be with Nandini, you just cannot say that. His love is pure, sweet and committed too. Committed because most of the long distance relationships fail and most prefer not to cling onto it. He hangs in there. He never stops dreaming of her and actually loves her like anything.
But why do we viewers forget about Sameer? Why does Vanraj steal the show? Is sacrifice greater than anything? Why do we rate our parent's love more? Most of us will answer 'because of the sacrifice or the selflessness'. Are we preoccupied with this 'sacrifice' thing or sacrifice just tops the lot? It's hard to tell but willingly/unwillignly, I think almost each of us support the verdict for Vanraj. Sameer does little wrong but what Vanraj does is beyond imagination and is right in every sense when it comes to her happiness. And perhaps this is why Nandini explains her decision (of choosing Vanraj) to Sameer by saying, 'pyar karna tumne mujhe sikhaya Sameer lekin pyar nibhana, maine Vanraj se sikha hai (You taught me to love, Sameer. But from Vanraj I learnt how it's done actually; to keep loving inspite of all the difficulties and to love selflessly.)' Maybe this is why our eyes get less watery (with pain) when Nandini explains her decision to Sameer and more watery (with joy) when Nandidni chooses to be with Vanraj at last.
But today, I feel for Sameer too. Most of us relate ourselves with the movie characters and laugh/cry with them. I always entered into Vanraj's character and embraced his feelings and pain as mine. But if I watch HDDCS again, I will enter inside Sameer's character too. I will cry with him when the rest of the viewers feel the utmost pleasure with Vanraj at the end. That poor man deserves someone by his side. I will be his friend. For nothing can be sadder than what Sameer told to Nandini at the end, 'You married Vanraj means you will be his for seven lives. But in the 8th life, you will be mine. Only mine. No Vanraj then.'
Leaving behind my favourite song from the movie: