If Bollywood has been challenged by any other industry in India, it is undoubtedly the TV industry. The small screen has given many hits, and several big actors have started their careers with the small screen itself.
It is not only the stars that one gets reminded of after hearing the word TV, but the evergreen shows, too, that changed the face of serials. It would not be wrong to say that the contribution of these serials was the key to improving the strength of the small screen.
On World Television Day, here are a few shows that created waves back then and continue to entertain the audience the same as before, if not more.
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On July 7, 1984, the country’s first Doordarshan serial ‘Hum Log’ was started. It focused on the problems faced in the daily life of an Indian middle-class family and the flight of their dreams. Crores of people went gaga over it.
According to a report, this serial was watched by more than 80% of the Indian population. The fact that TV was not available to everyone at that time, led to a spike in TV sales in the 80s. Such was the popularity of the serial.
Ramesh Sippy and Jyoti, who made an indelible mark with the film ‘Sholay’, directed the serial ‘Buniyaad’. Its story was written by Manohar Shyam Joshi, in which the partition of India-Pakistan was shown.
‘Buniyaad’, which aired in the mid-eighties, created a new wave of enthusiasm among the audience. It was first aired in 1986.
The popularity of this serial was such that a lot of private channels earned the show’s airing rights after several years of its original telecast.
‘Ramayana’ earned itself a place in Indian TV history that can never be replaced by any other serial to date. Last year, during the lockdown when film and TV serials’ shooting was put to halt, it was Ramayana, among other serials that kept the audience entertained. Both young and adult people alike enjoyed the mythological serial at the comfort of their homes. Many believed the serial gave them positivity and strength to fight the lockdown blues.
The popularity of this serial directed by Ramanand Sagar can be gauged from the fact that when it was time for its telecast, people used to sit with flowers and aarti platter in their hands because they could see its main characters as real Ram, Sita, Lakshmana and Hanuman.
This 90s serial was one of the most-anticipated serials of the time. This serial was telecast on Doordarshan from 1994 to 1996. Based on the novel by Devkinandan Khatri, the serial was produced by Neerja Guleri, while it was directed by Sunil Agnihotri.
Artists like Shikha Swaroop, Shahbaz Khan, Mukesh Khanna, Irrfan Khan and Pankaj Dheer gained a lot of popularity by working in this serial.
The craze of Chitrahar was such that it was the talk of the town. The serial, which started in the 1960s, reached the peak of popularity in the 70s.
New and old film songs were shown in it. It was the longest-running serial in the history of Indian television.
The craze for ‘Chitrahar’ was not only in India but it was also very popular abroad. Tarana Raja’s anchoring was also well-liked by the audience.
‘Mahabharata’, which aired for the first time in 1988, made an irreplaceable place in the hearts of the audience. Seeing the characters of Shri Krishna, Bhishma, Bhima, Kunti, Draupadi and Shri Krishna, the whole country couldn’t help but be glued to their TV screens. It became the most popular serial in the history of Indian television.
The popularity of producer BR Chopra and director Ravi Chopra’s ‘Mahabharata’ was so much that as soon as the show started, the streets of cities, localities and colonies of metros were drowned in silence.
‘Malgudi Days’ is reminiscent of grandparents and village. This serial which came in 1986 was shown in a small village named ‘Malgudi’.
It had 54 episodes telecast and was based on short stories by noted author RK Narayan.
Its chief Balkar Swami also garnered a lot of applause from children to elders. Seeing this serial, it seemed as if all that was happening was in our house or locality.
Why is World Television Day celebrated?
It was in 1996 that the United Nations General Assembly decided to observe November 21 as World Television Day. It plays an important role in communication and globalization. World Television Day is celebrated every year on November 21 to underline its importance.