‘Marriages are not about compromise’: Indian Matchmaking’s Pradhyuman Maloo feels communication is key
Who comes to mind when we talk about the South Mumbai man on a docu-reality show who supposedly rejected 150 proposals because he couldn’t find the right match? You’re right if you guessed Pradhyuman Maloo, the jewellery designer who drew mixed reactions in Netflix series Indian Matchmaking.
On the show, Pradhyuman came across as the guy who loved adventure sports, fashion, travelling, fine dining, horse riding, and cooking fancy food.
In real life, apart from being an entrepreneur, Pradhyuman is also a water baby. He is passionate about scuba diving and ocean conservation, and has gone diving in the Philippines, Egypt, Maldives, and Thailand. He also enjoys experimenting with cooking and the food he dished up on the sets of Indian Matchmaking, like Miso Paneer and Peri Peri Foxnuts, went viral after the release of the show.
In an interaction with YSWeekender, Pradhyuman talked about his jewellery business, his views on arranged marriages, and what he thought of the matchmaker, Sima Taparia...
YSWeekender (YSW): Can you tell us about yourself?
Pradhyuman Maloo (PM): After acquiring a master’s from Cass Business School, London, I plunged into the business world and focused on my mother’s Mumbai-based jewellery business, Nornament.
We offer bespoke jewellery that is affordable and luxurious; our collections range from daily wear functional jewellery and bridal jewellery to one-of-a-kind pieces.
I enjoy leading an adventurous life, travelling the world, meeting people, watching movies, experimenting with cooking, meditation, and scuba diving.
YSW: Why did your family decide to approach Sima Taparia to find a match for you?
PM: Sima Aunty is a family friend and our families have known each other for many years. However, my family didn’t approach her to find a potential match.
I was approached by Smriti Mundhra, Executive Director of Netflix original docu-reality series Indian Matchmaking. She spoke to me about the show and mentioned that Sima Aunty was the matchmaker for the show, which took me by surprise and added an instant sense of comfort.
Pradhyuman is a scuba diver and entrepreneur
YSW: Is it true that you rejected 150 biodatas before agreeing for a date?
PM: Matchmakers send you several biodatas (not proposals) to shortlist based on one’s preferences. The shortlisting is followed by a thorough background check/verification and matching preferences. Sometimes horoscope matching is followed by telephonic conversations to know each other and finally, a meeting is arranged. I have only met five to six of the matches out of the 150 biodatas that were presented to me.
Just like everyone else I am also looking for a beautiful life, full of growth and experiences with my partner, with whom I can be mentally aligned. I am taking my time because it’s for life and I don’t want to rush into it.
YSW: What would your ideal woman be like?
PM: Firstly, attraction in terms of how beautiful the person is, mentally and physically. Secondly, both partners should help each other overcome their weakness. Lastly, she should be family-oriented, as in India it's the families that get married, not individuals.
YSW: What did you think of matchmaker Sima’s choices and methods of working?
PM: Sima Aunty, due to her experience and generation-based biases, made many choices and comments on the show. However, as I am from a younger generation, I do not resonate with her choices and methods.
YSW: What are your views on Indian arranged marriages?
PM: In an arranged marriage, most couples meet via their friends, family, co-workers, situations, common interests, or professional matchmakers.
As history shows, the process can be a blessing to help two people and their families to come together and marry their lives. However, misrepresentation from either of the parties and lack of understanding before marriage can lead to bad situations later.
YSW: Why did you agree to a reality show? What was the whole experience like?
PM: My work at Nornament keeps me very occupied, which limits my time to socialise. Therefore, I am open to the idea of alternate ways to meet people, be it references from friends and family, modern dating apps, or traditional matchmakers.
So, when Smriti Mundhra got in touch with me, I felt Indian Matchmaking seemed like an interesting alternate platform for me to find a potential match. The show gave me the courage to put myself out of my comfort zone. The whole experience has made me confident, humble, and thankful.
YSW: Were you happy with the way you were portrayed?
PM: The docu-reality series was highly edited. My real personality was diluted to suit the show and the storyline. Amidst these edits, my true self was not shown correctly and people became presumptuous and judgemental. My personality wasn’t accurately portrayed and I was perceived in a way that is very unlike me in my real life.
The world is helping Pradhyuman find a spouse due to his role in Indian Matchmaking
YSW: Is the family pressure still on for you to get married? Or has the show changed everything?
PM: My family definitely wants me to get married but they are very patient, cooperative, and understanding.
The show has opened more opportunities for me. My family and friends from across the globe are receiving marriage proposals for me from their extended social circles. I feel very fortunate to witness how the world is helping me in finding my partner. My Instagram DMs are also flooded with interested people.
YSW: Why did you finally agree to go on a date with Snehal Totla from Jalgaon? Why did it seem like an interview?
PM: When working with matchmakers, most of the time they force you to take a leap of faith while meeting someone, even when you are unsure about the person. Sima Aunty had arranged the meeting spontaneously, considering the shooting schedules, and convinced me to at least give the meeting a shot.
Snehal was a very sweet girl. However, we didn't have any information about each other. Her town, Jalgaon, became a topic for interaction as we had our jewellery exhibition in Jalgaon that very day. Over our two-hour long conversation, I realised that neither were we looking for the same things in life, nor did we come from the same school of thought. Hence, I decided not to take the conversation forward.
However, the story was edited in a way to make it seem like an interview.
YSW: Why do you think none of the contestants found a match despite all of Sima Taparia’s efforts? Who would you blame?
PM: The ‘stars’ of course, haha!
YSW: Are you dating currently or are you still hoping to find your soulmate?
PM: I am currently single and I’m in search of a life partner who I can grow with and share my life.
YSW: Do you agree with Sima that marriage is compromise and flexibility?
PM: I don't agree that marriage is about compromise and flexibility. Compromise is a negative emotion, which over time if not addressed with lead to a fallout.
Open communication about our wants, wishes, thought processes, and intentions are important to overcome compromise and other difficult situations. Communication can help a couple understand each other better and grow as people.
YSW: Did you enjoy the reality show experience? How did you deal with all the critiques and adoration afterwards?
PM: I am taking each day as it comes. There are negative and positive sides to every situation. I am lucky enough to have received way more positivity than negativity. I’m overwhelmed by all the love and support that I have been getting from my family, friends, and fans.
YSW: What is your opinion of your co-actors and their choices? Who did you admire the most?
PM: Considering the edits of my character, I was unsure of how each character was like in real life. However, I was fortunate enough to get to know each of them personally after the show. They are all such wonderful people in real life. I admire Aparna the most as she is strong and decisive, and is working hard towards her life goals.
YSW: What are your plans for the future?
PM: I am currently planning the launch of my new jewellery line. I am also just enjoying everything that is coming my way with positivity and gratitude.
(Images credit: Pradhyuman Maloo)