The play Nadhimoolam had a bunch of fine actors conveying a thought-provoking message through a strong narration
CHENNAI: With punch dialogues, impeccable acting by artistes and a thought-provoking message, the Tamil play Nadhimoolam, which was staged at The Mylapore Fine Arts Club over the weekend, met our expectations. Directed by K Vivek Shankar, the play wonderfully conveyed the importance of forgiving one’s enemy, for it was only forgiveness and not revenge that could provide a solution to many a problem in our lives.
The story is about a man named Gopu Kumar (referred to as Gopi), who murders his friend-turned-foe for a particular reason. Gopi chases him in car, hits him consciously while making it appear like an accident. Though he serves a one-year sentence for negligent driving, no one comes to know that the episode was a case of gruesome murder. However, guilt consumes Gopi, who had not just killed a man, but also his innocent daughter named Nadhiya, whom he had overlooked during the wild chase.
The episode keeps recurring in his mind even when he is in jail. He happens to get close with a jailor named Durai, who learns about Gopi’s story.
Gopi spends a considerable amount of time in jail, and when he comes out, he adopts three-year-old Jyothi, another daughter of the man he had murdered, who was, till then, under Durai’s custody.
By this time, Gopi, once an angry young man, is completely transformed. He takes to spirituality and starts leading a peaceful life. But the episode of the past continues to haunt him now and then.
He decides to pen his autobiography by the time Jyothi attains her marriageable age. He discusses his plan with Durai and tells him that he would need an artist for illustrations. And as though a divine plan is working, Durai happens to meet an artist named Ashok through his psychologist sister.
In the meantime, Gopi tells his daughter about the episode. He tells her that he was the one who killed her father and her elder sister. Instead of reacting negatively, Jyothi forgives him. “You are not my daughter, you are my mother,” says Gopi, touching Jyothi’s feet. This dialogue with the emotional touch makes the audience shed tears even as they clap in adoration.
Soon after, Ashok visits Gopi’s house after having interacted with the psychologist. He meets Jyothi and feels that he has seen her somewhere. “I think I have seen you somewhere,” he tells her.
Eventually, the story unfolds revealing that Ashok is the reincarnation of Nadhiya.
And when Ashok learns this, memories of his previous birth become clearer. He goes to Gopi’s house with a knife to take revenge. Gopi is ready to face death. “Kill me. That way I will not have rebirth and my bad karma will be washed away,” Gopi tells Ashok. Hearing him speak so, Ashok decides to let him alive. “Leaving you alive is the best punishment,” he tells Gopi, leaving the audience awe-struck.