Friday, January 23, 2015

Saraswati Pujo

                        Idols of Goddess Saraswati up for sale in a market of Kolkata on Friday. We revere her and seek her blessings on this special day of SriPanchami of the Bengali calender of Magh. According to legends, she is also known as Bagh Devi or Veenapani among students. She offers knowledge and intellect to all her believers.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Family soap operas rock

More than a decade ago as far as my memory goes back I remember two soap operas had become hugely popular among the Indian television viewers who used to lap up those programmes like stress-busters.

Those two shows which were aired by Star Plus TV channel under the banner of Balaji Telefilms were "Kahani Ghar Ghar Ki" and "Kyuki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi". The audience, especially the women, were inspired by Tulsi of Kyuki...and Parvati of Kahani....The character roles etched by the director and portrayed by the stars became household names at that time. The show used to start with a theme song which doubled the popularity of the show. Women of all ages, whether they were housewives, school-going kids, girls studying in colleges -- the day-to-day episodes were discussed by the viewers at all gatherings where these women happened to unite. 
Unfortunately, not all were lucky enough to follow these shows regularly at night and they were treated among friends like social out-castes are treated in our society.So one had to catch a glimpse of 'Kyuki Saas' and 'Kahani' to remain a friend of friends. Gradually the liking for these two shows soared to a height giving Indian television programmes a new horizon.

The soap operas had started in 2000 when I was in college and came to an end when I had started working. The interesting part is that I had an opportunity to watch those episodes at home in Kolkata but my TV and I had parted since I had left home to study post-graduation in Bangalore. The hostel where we were living had a common room for girls where there was a TV for all. Not every day we had a chance to watch those programmes so we lost in touch. Again when I got a job, there were days when the Virani family of 'Kyuki Saas'and the Agarwal family of 'Kahani' used to remind me of my family and how good it was to hold the dinner plate and watch the great Tulsi talking to Ba.

God had been gracious to me and after I came back home I found my friendly TV in the living room. Now there are many channels coming through cable and each has a colourful name. But Star still rocks like before. Young and fresh new faces are making their career through Indian television shows and their talents are being awarded at big banner award functions. Since 2010, many shows have come on air but ended without an ending leaving us wondering what happened to "Is pyaar Ko Kya Naam Du" which has a new story and new casts. What happened to Navya and Anant? These days I keep my fingers crossed when I watch Nisha aur uski cousins. It will be an injustice not to appreciate those youngsters gifted with good acting talents who give us happiness in our otherwise busy life in reality.