It was fun when Doordarshan decided to re-telecast the mythological series Mahabharat during Covid-19 lockdown on public demand. Without any surprise during its rerun in Covid-19 lockdown, it became the second most watched Indian TV show after Ramayan. Mahabharat re-telecast started on Saturday, March 28, 2020. DD National telecasts two episodes every day, one episode at 12 pm, another at 7 pm.
Mahabharat is an epic Indian television series based on the ancient Sanskrit epic “Mahabharat”. The original series consisted of a total of ninety-four episodes and each episode is approximately 60 minutes. The epic series was produced by B. R. Chopra and directed by Ravi Chopra. The most memorable music was composed by Raj Kamal. The script was based on the original story by Vyasa and written by Pandit Narendra Sharma and the Hindi/Urdu poet Rahi Masoom Raza. The authentic costumes for the series were provided by Maganlal Dresswala.
Mahabharat First Broadcast – 2 October 1988 to 24 June 1990
That time when it was broadcasted from 2 October 1988 to 24 June 1990 on Doordarshan, it had a huge fan following. And no doubt again during the pandemic lockdown it gathered a huge crowd of television fans. Why would it not happen??? The main reason behind the success of the series was its music, especially the title track. The title song is a combination of lyrical content and two verses from the Bhagavad Gita and was sung in the appealing voice of singer Mahendra Kapoor. The title song is followed by a narration by Indian voice-artist Harish Bhimani as a personification of Time, that detailed the current situations and highlighted the spiritual significance of that episode.
The serial based on the Hindu epic “Mahabharat” became one of the most successful television series in Indian television history. It had been massively popular when they were first telecast more than three decades ago as well. Now during the lockdown it became a reason to stay at home and watch it with the family. And not only this with a huge fan following, it will bring back old days when people used to forget everything and watch them. Now when the citizens of the country were locked down at their homes, it made people remember and live their old days.
B.R Chopra’s Mahabharat starred some of the popular faces of the industry. It was a pleasure to watch these actors. The lead actors were Nitish Bharadwaj as Lord Krishna, Mukesh Khanna as Bheeshma, Gajendra Chauhan as Yudhishthir, Praveen Kumar as Bheem, Arjun (Firoz Khan) as Arjun, Roopa Ganguly as Draupadi, Sameer Chitre as Nakul, Sanjeev Chitre as Sahadeva, Puneet Issar as Duryodhan, Pankaj Dheer as Karna, Surendra Pal as Dronacharya and Gufi Paintal as Shakuni.
Mahabharat bagged 22.9 million viewers
During its original broadcasting Mahabharat was associated with the simultaneous emptying of streets in the cities and people leaving work early to watch it. And now during its re telecast during COVID-19 pandemic it gathered 145.8 million viewers from both morning and evening slots on DD Bharati. However, after Ramayan ended, Mahabharat became the most watched TV show until its end. The series ended with 22.9 million viewers.