Tuesday, January 17, 2012
When love comes calling
Saritha talks about how she spoke to popular actor Jayasurya through a phone-in programme, and ended up falling in love and getting married to him
By Shevlin Sebastian
During the shooting of the Tamil version of 'Oomappenninu Uriyadappayyan' in Ooty, in 2002, one day the work finished at 7 p.m. Usually, the next day's shooting began at 6.30 a.m. But actor Jayasurya was told by the production crew that it would start at 8.30 a.m. Immediately he set out in his Hyundai Accent all the way to Kochi. The reason: he wanted to meet his lady love, Saritha.
Throughout the hairpin bends that he took on that foggy night, he kept calling Saritha, asking her not to sleep, as he would be arriving at any moment. In the end, he came to Kochi at 2 a.m., and went directly to Saritha's apartment in Panampilly Nagar. She was waiting patiently, along with her sister, and their parents. After barely half an hour, Jayasurya set out, back to Ooty, to be in time for the morning shoot.
“That was during the peak of our love affair,” says Saritha. “I was moved by what he did.”
Jayasurya and Saritha met in an unusual way. The actor had a live phone-in programme on the ACV television channel, which soon became very popular. “My grandmother and sister were avid fans of his,” says Saritha. Once, when Saritha -- who was doing her degree in bio-technology at the Dayanand Sagar College of Engineering, Bangalore -- came to Kochi on a vacation, she also spoke to Jayasurya during one programme. “Soon we began speaking on the phone,” she says. A few months later, Saritha's family was going for a function at Tripunithara where Jayasurya stayed. A meeting was arranged and Saritha met Jayasurya for the first time.
“There were no sparks at that first meeting,” she says. “We exchanged a few words.” But they continued talking to each other. “I regarded him as a good friend, in whom I could confide everything,” she says.
But matters hotted up when Jayasurya rented a flat in the same building as Saritha. “Our families became very close,” she says. “We were constantly in and out of each other's apartments.”
But slowly, without them actually knowing, the duo fell in love. Both the families did not suspect anything. “There would be humourous discussions about what type of people we would like to marry,” says Saritha. “There was no hint given to anybody that we may be interested in each other.”
So, when the couple announced that they wanted to marry, both families were initially shocked. “But gradually, they accepted our decision,” says Saritha.
After Saritha completed her M Sc. in biotechnology, they got married on January 25, 2004.
And in these eight years, Saritha has a good understanding of her husband. “His biggest plus points is his simple and humble nature,” she says. “That is what I liked the most in him from the beginning. But I never imagined that I would marry somebody like him. I am a science student and he is into arts. But God willed otherwise.”
Saritha also likes Jayasurya's positive attitude. “Even when we are going through difficult moments, Jayasurya rarely gets negative-minded,” says Saritha. “Instead, he is busy trying to find solutions to problems.”
His one drawback is that he tends to rush through when he is doing something. “He can be impulsive at times,” says Saritha.
And does she enjoy being the wife of a celebrity? “Yes, I do,” she says. “Suppose I go to a function, people will ask me, “Aren’t you Jayasurya’s wife? And I realize that it has a lot to do with the fact that they hold my husband in high regard and affection. It makes me feel good.”
And unlike most celebrities, Saritha says that they try to lead as normal a life as possible. “We go to the halls to see films, we go to the parks with our son, Advaith,” she says. (Incidentally, just ten days ago, Saritha gave birth to a baby girl). “We are regulars at the Oberon Mall. I don’t think there is a loss of privacy. When people see us they react differently. Some rush towards us, and, usually, they want photographs to be taken. But many just look at us from a distance.”
Asked whether an acting career creates a lot of insecurity, because one is dependent on getting roles all the time, Saritha says, “My husband told me, 'Always give more than 100 per cent to your work. Then the profession will show loyalty to you also. And the roles will keep coming.'”
(The New Indian Express, Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram)