Cupid strikes at Burns Road

February 18, 2024

A love story unfolds as two people cross paths

Cupid strikes at Burns Road


new play that started airing last week has already caused quite a stir.

The main leads are Farhad, played by actor Hamza Sohail, and Freeha, played by Iqra Aziz. The supporting cast includes Shabbir Jan, Khalid Anam, Raza Samoo, Zainab Qayyum, Shaheera Jalil Albasit and Samhan Ghazi.

The teasers looked promising. Farhad is the son of Yaqub Karim Bakksh who owns a pakwan shop in the heart of Karachi and has two sons and a daughter. The older one is in the States. He is banking on Farhad, the younger one, to take over the business, established by his forefathers. Farhad has recently completed his BBA from a local university, with distinction.

Freeha Motiwalla is the daughter of a Gujrati businessman, played by Khalid Anam, who owns a jewellery shop and has a flourishing business in Karachi inherited from his forefathers. His brother and sister-in-law’s daughter, Zara (Freeha’s first cousin) is getting married and he is footing the expenses, as the brother foolishly invested and lost his share of the business in a scam. As a result, he is completely dependent on his brother, who is large-hearted and magnanimous.

Freeha has an encounter with Farhad on her way back from the tailor’s shop on Burns Road. She is on a bike with Zara’s brother. Farhad is also on a bike accompanied by his cousin Jojo who has a gymnasium.

The encounter leaves both of them shaken. For Farhad, it is love at first sight. Freeha, too, appears to be smitten and seems extremely concerned about his well-being. She visits him at the hospital to enquire about his health. He reassures her that everything is fine and so the two part, destined to cross each other’s paths again.

The two have vastly different family backgrounds. While Freeha is the apple of her father’s eye and has been brought up in the lap of luxury, Farhad, has had a modest upbringing. He has a sister, Kiran, played by Shaheera Jalil Albasit of Razia fame, whose in-laws are extremely demanding and keep delaying the wedding by coming up with fresh demands whenever they visit. The engagement is two years old and, understandably, Kiran and her fiancé are quite close.

…will things turn out differently for the Romeo and Juliet of Burns Road?

On one of these visits, Farhad gives his sister’s in-laws a piece of his mind. This creates a rift between the two families, especially Kiran and her fiancé. Farhad is forced to apologise. He does that extremely reluctantly. The matter appears resolved for the time being.

On one of his visits to his cousin’s gymnasium, he catches sight of Freeha’s cousin who was with her that fateful day and very cleverly, manages to trick him into giving him her number. Freeha is over the moon to receive his call and when she learns that Farhad has a catering business (a fashionable term for a pakwan shop), resolves to organise a dholki for Zara and promises to have the catering organised by him.

Freeha’s brother and sister-in-law express their extreme displeasure at the way money is being spent at Zara’s wedding. Freeha’s every wish is her father’s command but her mother, brother and sister-in-law express their disapproval at the way money is being splurged at the upcoming nuptials.

Freeha’s mother wants her to be married next but strictly within the family. An episode is recounted where Zara’s paternal aunt, Ayesha Jehanzeb fondly called Shaggo Apa, marries outside the family and has an extremely bitter experience. Although that episode is more than fifteen years old, it is recounted repeatedly to caution the young women in the family against marrying unfamiliar suitors.

Under the prevailing circumstances and considering the economic difference between the two families, is it still wise for Farhad and Freeha to take the next step? Will the families ever warm up to their union? Will Shaggo Apa’s experience be repeated or will things turn out differently for the Romeo and Juliet of Burns Road?

Tune in to embark on this journey of the two star-crossed lovers as they prepare to fight the odds. A riveting watch.

The writer is an educationist and can be reached at She blogs at

Cupid strikes at Burns Road