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Epic: Ramayan on Doordarshan

The Ramayana is the most popular and holy epics in Hinduism, the story of the God who came to Earth and lived among humans in the form of a human, and who is now worshiped as epitomizing the ideals of the ideal man, in thought and action. In the 80’s, as society developed, people were slowly moving away from religion and faith. TV was developing as a new media that would provide information and entertainment. And then came the serial written and directed by Ramanand Sagar called ‘Ramayan’ (with 78 episodes).

Mythology - Ramayana

The serial took the epic and presented in a dramatized form. It started coming on Doordarshan Sunday Morning at 9:30 AM from January 1987 to July End 1988. India had never seen something like this serial. It ignited the religious thought in people like nothing that had been seen. Television in India was not so common then, and yet, people found a set somewhere to watch. If a neighbour had a TV, you would go there to watch, or go over to a relative’s place. In smaller towns or villages, a single set would have a large number of people watching the single set.


The effect was apparent. Roads would be empty when the serial came, and woe betide a electricity board office if the light would go off; people would gather and raise slogans and threaten. At one time, it set a record for the world’s most watched mythological serial. In addition, it opened the floodgates for more mythological and historical serials after that.
The serial took the whole story of the Ramayana from before the birth of the God Rama and all the way till the story of how he re-discovered his sons, Luv and Kush when they had grown up to be child warriors. This was covered through an extension of the serial called ‘Uttar Ramayan’, created on public demand. The serial brought about a much greater understanding of the epic in a way that no amount of reading would have brought about, and also served to highlight the values and culture embedded in the epic.
The serial also made celebrities of the main actors, who were revered as godly figures (except for Dara Singh (played the role of Hanuman) who was already famous)
* Arun Govil as Ram
* Deepika as Sita
* Sunil Lahri as Lakshman
* Arvind Trivedi as Ravan
* Vijay Arora as Indrajit
* Sameer Rajda as Shatrughna
* Mulraj Rajda as Janak
* Lalita Pawar as Manthara

Watch Videos from Ramayan on Youtube

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