Ankita Lokhandi, who became a household name on the feature-length show Pavitra Rishta, in which she starred opposite the late actor Susanth Singh Rajput, said she never stopped ‘livening’ her character Archana. So, when I got a chance to be a part of the reboot, Pavitra Rishta 2.0, it was like coming home.
“I have been Archana for 12 years. I have never been out of character, I definitely feel that because I loved Archana so much, it was very easy for me to become her,” Ankita told Hindustan Times, adding that it was ‘too emotional’ for her to come back. Archana.
On the first day of filming Pavitra Rishta 2.0, Ankita said she was a bit nervous. “I remember being nervous because I didn’t know how to get back into the Pavitra Rishta sets and start playing Archana again. It was a bit difficult but I was fine after that when I started shooting and met the whole team. Everyone was very nice and welcoming.”
Ankita mentions how Pavitra Rishta 2.0 appeared after meeting producer Ekta Kapoor. Ekta wanted them to work together again and Ankita suggested rebooting Pavitra Rishta. “Because that was my show… Mujhe nahi chahiye tha ki 5 saal baad koi aur Pavitra Rishta kare (I didn’t want someone else to do my part in Pavitra Rishta after five years), I would have been very angry,” she said.
Pavitra Rishta 2.0 will retain the essence of love and romance from the original, but Archana will be seen “in a completely different way”. “She is more confident this time and talks about his likes and dislikes. Otherwise, pehli wali Archana has been in that bargaining state the whole time.” “Main compromise kar leti hoon (I will make a concession),” “Manav, aap kisi aur ke saath shaadi kar lo (Marry someone else).” This time, Archana is from the 21st century, she is working, she is very self-confident and is fighting for her love,” Ankita said.
When Pavitra Rishta completed 12 years of release in June, Ankita posted on Instagram and paid homage to Sushant. She said the show was “definitely incomplete” without him and Manav was Archana’s only one. As Susant stops, Shahir Sheikh puts on his boots in Pavitra Rishta 2.0.
“Isme koi sochne wali baat hi nahi hai (that’s no thinking), Sushant and I created Pavitra Rishta. We were Archana-Manav and always will be Archana-Manav for the people who loved us. People cried for us and people are still crying. Every journalist I talk to,” Ankita said. In fact he cries because they are very attached to Pavitra Rishta and that’s the best thing you could ask for.”
“We created something that was very organic. With Sushant and I… sign ko magic dikha (people saw magic), because it was there. Of course, when I started shooting for Pavitra Rishta, Sushant was everywhere and in every scene. Shaheer jab aata hai set pe (when Shaheer comes on set), because in that wake I’ve seen Sushant playing for so many years. He’s so emotional but I feel like he’s there. He’s watching us all,” she added.
Ankita said she received a “really good” response on the Pavitra Rishta 2.0 promo. However, I acknowledge that there is a section of unhappy people. “Look, I don’t know what to say. People have their opinions and the thought process. Maybe they don’t like it, so they don’t like it, that’s fine and that’s their call. I can’t force people to like my show. But I can just show you what I do with a lot of hard work,” she said. : “My team is working hard.”
“No one can force a person to love anyone. Aane dete hai, dekhte hai kaisa lagta hai logon ko (let it shoot and let’s see if people like it). People are so fond of me and Susanth that they don’t want to see Shahir and Ankita, nor That’s ok.But there will be new fans too na jo shayad hum dono ki jodi pasand kare(Who would I like famous as a couple)?I always see the positive side, and I see that.I can’t go to people and tell them to love Pavitra Rishta.Impossible. But when they see it and if they really feel love, they’ll love it. If not, they won’t. She added.
Ankita also talked about the support she received from the Sushant family. When she released the first appearance of Pavitra Rishta 2.0, his sister Shweta Singh Kirti shared it on Instagram Stories and wrote, “I am very happy with this. Wish the best of luck to the Pavitra Rishta team.” In another post, she wrote, “Prayers for the success of Pavitra Rishta.”
See also | Pavitra Rishta 2.0: Ankita Lokhande-Shaheer Sheikh promo gives goosebumps and watery eyes, watch
When asked if she discussed the issue of Pavitra Rishta 2.0 with Shweta, Ankita said, “Yes, of course, that is why she does. She is a blessing in my life. I call her ‘Diddy’. Shweta and I have always been good friends with each other. She is my strength, in Indeed. She always supports me to do good. I believe that Sushant family, every sister, have supported me all along, blessings unki hai toh sab achcha hi hai yaar (if I have their blessings, all is well). Everyone is there for me in the family. I sent Humor to Rani De, they all loved it. They always said to me, ‘Ankita, work hard,’ and now I am working hard, so they appreciate it.”
Ankita said in a parting note that fans should “expect only love, and nothing else” from Pavitra Rishta 2.0. “Bohot saari cheezein aisi hoti hai jo hum pyaar mein bolte nahi hai (many things are not said in love) and this is Archana-Manav. Bina kuch kahe woh bohot saari cheezein bol jaate hai (they manage to convey a lot of things without saying any something actually) and that’s the beauty of Pavitra Rishta and people will love it, I’m pretty sure.”
Pavitra Rishta 2.0 premieres September 15th on Zee5.