There was much talk about the drama Dar Si Jaati Hai Sila and how it focused on harassment by a trustworthy family member so I planned to watch it. The story revolved around Sila (Yumna Zaidi) who resides with a big joint family. Both Sila and her mother are victims of constant harassment and threats at the hands of Joi Mama (Noman Ijaz). He is a sexual predator whose identity remains concealed. In various scenes Joi creepily sneaks into her room at night, inappropriately stokes his face when she is sleeping, always makes her feel uncomfortable by following her, etc. Therefore, she is always nervous and agitated as living in the same house meant she can be harassed anytime. She is always criticized for acting abnormal but no one in the house actually tries to delve into this matter. Her mother spoke to her husband about how she feels uncomfortable however he denies it and talks about his “Shirafat” stating “Pura zamana Joi Mama ki shirafat keh gun gata hai”. For that matter, Sila and her mother do not dare to speak up against him. However, in the last episode, we see a major change where she and her mother confronts him and tell all the family members the truth.
Moreover, I also came across the interview of the writer of drama, Bee Gul, who mentioned how she got several notices from PEMRA stating “Why is it an uncomfortable watch” and how you are suggesting ideas that this can happen. It is quite alarming to see how still there remains resistance to portray such storylines.
I feel like this drama has been an eye-opener for society as our mindsets are flawed in a way that we still do not accept the fact that harassment can be in the safety of the home as well. We trust our family members so much that we fail to accept and consider that they may be the predators. It depicts how we have a patriarchal society where women are usually hesitant to raise their voice but at the same time, it sets a precedent as both the mother and daughter finally confronts him. Not only this but the drama showed how in joint families there are such power dynamics that the person usually becomes bound to not raise voice even though such incidences are happening under the nose of family members at the same time.