Throwback: When Gia Manek was replaced overnight by Devoleena Bhattacharjee in Saath Nibhaana Saathiya
The show Saath Nibhaana Saathiya was one of the most popular shows when it aired on TV. The show reflected on the dynamic relationship between an overpowering mother-in-law and a meek daughter-in-law. The show had a huge fan following and the audience liked the love-hate relationship between the leads Ahem and Gopi. The role of Gopi Bahu was played by the cute actress Gia Manek. She had become a household name with her natural acting in the show. But the actress was suddenly replaced on the show by Devoleena Bhattacharjee. Though it was a risk for the show as Gia Manek was a very popular face, but the makers' bet went well and people started liking Devoleena as the new Gopi.
On trying to unearth the reason for the actress for suddenly leaving the show, we found out that the makers had fired her on the grounds of ‘unprofessional conduct and breach of contract’. As per sources, the reason for the rift between the actor and makers of the show was because she was offered Jhalak Dikhla Ja 5. The actress had signed up for Jhalak, but the show makers of Saath Nibhaana Saathiya asked her to decline the offer.
According to a source, “She did not take permission from the channel before committing her time as a participant in a show for the rival channel." The issue was then taken to the Association of Motion Pictures & TV Programme Producers (AMPTPP), after that it went to the Cine & TV Artistes’ Association (CINTAA). Members of CINTAA met up with Giaa, and they decided that Gia should quit the reality show.
As per sources from CINTAA, “Giaa tried to convince the association to let her do the reality show as well. But the fact is that she was under contract with her production house, according to which she could not do any other show while doing Saathiya. Also, they were of the opinion that Jhalak would have affected her image of a softspoken bahu in the serial. The channel felt it wasn’t fair... she had become popular because of their show and now a rival channel was using her brand and image.”
Gia was in a tough spot as she did not want to quit any of these shows. Finally, the channel took a strong decision of replacing Gia with another actress. As per reports, it was Gia who had first sent in her resignation.
The channel source Nitin Vaidya of Star India revealed, “The show saw a new face essaying the role of Gopi Bahu, which has been played by Jiaa Manek since its launch. The association with her has been discontinued due to unprofessional conduct and breach of contract from her side.”