The hunt has finally and officially ended. The man who will now play the character Manav in Zee TV’s leading primetime drama Pavitra Rishta, is a long-term Balaji Telefilms loyalist Hiten Tejwani. Over two years of the show’s glorious run, good-natured, hardworking, loving and sincere ‘Manav’ has emerged as a role model for the middle-class Indian man and the ideal son and husband for scores of women across the country.
The decision as to who to cast as the new Manav was not easy a-coming. Several prominent television faces were approached to play the part of an older Manav as the storyline of Pavitra Rishta scurries forward a few years. The actors in the running were Mrunal Jain, Sharad Kelkar, Aamir Dalvi, Yash Tonk amongst many others and of course, Hiten Tejwani.
Mrunal, who was a very strong contender to play Manav, somehow did not inspire confidence during a mock-shoot with co-star Ankita Lokhande as he literally shivered and trembled through most of it . He was apparently rather intimidated by her. Some of the other choices fizzled out as they did not want to be seen playing a much older character when they are ‘reasonably’ young themselves!
Speaking of his new assignment, Hiten said, “I am fully aware of the responsibility that comes along with playing a character already essayed so successfully by another actor. The popularity of the original only adds to the successor’s challenge. But it will be my endeavor to merge seamlessly into the character of Manav. I will sink my teeth into this role and live the character of Manav until people love me just as much…. But above all else, let me thank Ekta once again for letting me be a part of Pavitra Rishta… It’s an iconic show that has won millions of hearts by beautifully showcasing the struggle of the Indian middle-class! ”
Hiten is expected to start shooting in the coming week. Hiten will make a dramatic entry in the Monday, November 7th episode as Manav returns home while the Karanjikar household is being auctioned off. Will Manav step in as a savior and make the highest bid to save the Karanjikars’ dignity and pride? Only time will tell!
When contacted about her new co-star, actor Ankita Lokhande said, “I’m really kicked to have an experienced and talented actor like Hiten join the cast. I’m sure our chemistry will prove to be a winning one …!”