Avani, a brave yet kind-hearted, strong yet sensitive young woman with aspiring dreams is the loving child of Mistla’s family, living in Pravadh, a hamlet in Central India. With her marriage, her entire life takes a drift and is forced into hardships at her in-laws. Sadly, the social evils in India are so cruel that they could not quench their thirst without massacring Avani’s life. Though this is just a story of a fictional character, it is an epitome of a woman’s life in traditional India amidst social evils like dowry, being a girl and giving birth to a girl.
Avani is the apple of Mr.Mistla’s eye, he wanted her to be married to Aadisesha of the prestigious Sayan clan. Sayans are well known and respected for their bravery and richness in Pravadh. Aadi falls in love with Avani at the first sight and wants to marry her. He expresses his desire to his mother (step-mother) Guru Tai, a wicked, egocentric and money-minded woman, who unwillingly agrees to the marriage as Mistlas are nowhere close to the wealth of Sayan’s.
Mistlas, who are more than happy for this proposal has converted their property and sweet-meat shop, which is their source of income into gold and jewelry and presented it to Sayan family as dowry.
Avani had a hard time leaving her parents but she did not have a choice. Guru Tai, who is insatiable of money, would never be complacent even with tons and tons of treasure is not happy with the dowry Avani brought and started to show her true colors.
Nevertheless, Avani won her husband’s love and heart. Her bravery and mad desire to save her husband from the clutches of a feral Kashyapi wolf has changed Aadi’s perception of her. Earlier, Aadi was just in love with her looks but now, he is madly in love with her as a person in and out. Their love is adorable and with-in a few days they learned the fact that they are turning from a beautiful couple to wonderful parents.
Grotesque souled Guru Tai could not bear the thought of Avani living happily in her home and going to give birth to a child now.
She determined to put an end to Avani and resorted to Mukka baba, known for his evil powers, for help. Mukka baba blessed Guru Tai and advised her not to touch Avani until she gives birth to her child. As per baba’s guidance, Guru Tai laid low all the while watching Aadi and Avani with intense loath and planning for a heinous end. On the other hand, Aadi’s love for Avani grew stronger by day. He treated her like a baby and caressed her with utmost love and care. The couple was living a happy life unaware of the things going to happen. On a blessed day, in the middle of towering Kashyapi trees, amidst flower bed, Avani gave birth to a beautiful girl, Surya.
Guru Tai could not accept the fact that Avani gave birth to a girl; she did not let the couple enter their home. Feeling depressed and dejected, the couple leaves home and enters the mysterious Kashyapi forest with baby Surya. Unaware of the cruel intentions of Tai, Avani and Aadi walked deep into the Kashyapi woods with mixed feelings, though the joy of baby Surya overcame the rejection by Tai.
Guru Tai could not take the fact, that her son left her for his wife, her anger became unbonded. Outrageous Tai called her men and started hunting down the couple and their baby. Her wicked intention is to kill the naive child and teach the couple a lesson.
Unknowingly the couple walked a long way into Kashyapi, Avani started feeling weak and thirsty. Aadi leaves the mother and baby to fetch some water from Vimala, a sacred river originating from Kashyapi.
In the meanwhile, Guru Tai’s men who were secretly tracking the couple takes advantage of the moment, comes out to attack Avani and Surya. Learning the cruel intentions of Tai, Avani fights with Tai and her men till her last breath to save her baby.
Tragically, the story ends as Tai brutally kills Avani in the exasperation of not able to kill Surya. Avani, anticipating the horror that is ought to happen, has saved the baby Surya’s life by leaving her afloat on the river Vimala by building a makeshift raft out of dried coconut leaf. Luckily the story ends on 1 positive note, stating that a childless couple finds Surya and takes her as a baby gifted by God.
Avani has started coming out on Facebook from close to a month now and from then it became the sole reason why I log in to Facebook every day. Being a photo enthusiast myself, I could not resist appreciating the way each frame is captured. Initially, every photograph seemed like a painting, it was that crisp and balance of colors in each photograph, which I would not step back from calling a masterpiece! Arjun Kamath is the guy behind this magnum opus, he is an LA based director/cinematographer. The most I like amongst his works are the Photo-stories he creates.
Even before this, the one photo-story which made me awestruck was Coming out. Coming out details on the sensitive issue of LGBT and how brutal is our society towards the people of this community, who are trying to come out of the shell. It was beautifully narrated all along and the pictures make you feel so real. But the ending is heart-wrenching!!