Mayank Gandhi endorses the system. In an interview, the two share their story, and the lessons they have learnt from their marital union.
Even though their families arranged their match, actors Hunar Hale and Mayank Gandhi fell head-over-heels in love with each other, right from the first meeting. His reserved nature, and her shy demeanor gave the two a common ground to connect. The couple exchanged vows just last year in August, in a grand shaadi that took place in Delhi. In a candid conversation, the couple spills the beans on their relationship and more. Edited excerpts from the interview:
Your wedding was certainly the most talked about even last year…
Hunar: We had a grand Punjabi wedding, complete with band, baaja, and baraat. We had the pheras in gurudwara as well. The whole experience was surreal. Getting married to him was like a dream come true. I was so excited about the fact that I was going to spend the rest of my life with him, forever. The day still holds a lot of significance for me, and brings a huge smile on my face every time I think about it.
Mayank: It was the happiest day of my life, since I was getting married to the woman of my dreams. I was a little nervous, since the feeling of not being single was finally dawning on me. The whole experience was amazing. It will always remain special.
Describe your first meeting, and the impressions you had about each other?
Hunar: When you meet the right guy, you just know it. All credit goes to my family for helping us find our soulmate. Mayank has his reasons for doing everything, but he would never give an explanation. So I found him a little khadoos. Also, I am a talkative person, so he always listens to me. Then he asks, “Ab main bolun?” I never wanted a joru ka ghulaam. I like that he’s matured. In fact, he’s quite the man I prayed for.
Mayank: First I thought, “Dikhne mein thik thak hai. Dekhte hain.” (laughs). On a serious note, our families decided to connect the both of us. I have always believed the universe is behind all this.
What attracted you to each other?
Mayank: Hunar is honest about her approach towards people and life. She understands me, and I believe that’s the most important thing in any relationship.
Hunar: Mayank is protective and caring. Since the day, we have met he always made sure that he gives me first priority when I am around. I find that extremely attractive.
So, the “Chalo shaadi kartein hain” moment is all because of your families?
Hunar: Yes, of course. It was an arranged set-up and we both belonging to the same ideology consented to what our parents decided for the both of us. We both have to thank our stars for getting a partner like each other. We often tell others that we couldn’t have possibly found a better partner by ourselves.
Was the transition from being strangers to life partners smooth?
Mayank: We did fall in love at first sight, but we were never lovers. Since ours was an arranged marriage, we had no expectations from one another, as it happens in typical love marriage setting. The best thing about arranged marriages is that there’s no expectations. Both partners accept each other other with an open heart and are willing to adapt. I guess that made the transition really smooth.
What makes this relationship of yours work?
Mayank: I give my wife her space. I also believe that the wife is always right. I make sure I give her surprises. It could be something as simple as a movie, or a dinner date, or a small vacation at her favourite destination.
Hunar: I try to spend time with Mayank. He has been there for me though my good and bad times. Also I give him his space when he is angry or irritated. I don’t know how to cook, but I still try to cook Mayank’s favourite dishes.
Does marriage in any way push the friendship out of the window? What’s your take?
Mayank: We don’t think so. In the course of knowing each other, we became the best of friends, and then life partners. Friendship is one of the core elements to a successful marriage. There is no question of it going out of the window. Where there is no friendship, there is no marriage.
What’s one quality that you dislike about each other?
Mayank: I dislike Hunar’s stubbornness.
Hunar: Mayank can get fussy. I also dislike that he avoids milk in his daily diet!
What are a dos and don’ts in a relationship that you swear by?
Hunar: Don’t expect your partner to be ready to talk when you are. Apologise when you think you are wrong
Mayank: I think the first step is to be honest to each other. Also, when your partner confronts you, deal with the issue. You need to talk about it with your partner.
A special thing you both did for each other:
Hunar: Mayank gifted a heart-shaped solitaire on my engagement. I still wear it.
Mayank: The first day after marriage, Hunar cooked cream chicken for my family and me. She isn’t fond of cooking, and it is sweet of her to do it for me.
If marooned on an island, what are the things you would like to take along:
Hunar: Lots of water bottles, my lipbalm, sun block and a bug spray.
Mayank: A flashlight, a spear, since it would make life on the island so much easier, and also a matchbox.
Endearing names you use for each other:
Hunar: I call him Minku
Mayank: I call her Hunz
Your ultimate romantic fantasy:
Hunar: A fancy dinner on the beach. Then a long walk along the shoreline during sunset when the sky is at its prettiest.
Mayank: It’s too personal.