July 21, 2008 @ 11:16 pm
A few months ago, I had written about a radio program aired on AIR (All India Radio), titled “Manthan”.
Another program that the Mrs. and I try to catch if we are driving back during that time is Hawa Mahal, which is also aired on AIR (102.9 FM) at 8 pm every week day.
Hawa Mahal showcases 15 minutes radio plays written by various play writers. These are usually repeats of what has been broadcasted over the past many years, some of them dating back 20 – 25 years ago.
Most of these plays try to address social mindsets which prevailed at that time. Widow re-marriage, scarcity of jobs and other such issues which the middle class faced in the late 70s and early 80s of India. The best thing about the plays is they way they are rendered. A lot of attention is given to minute of details. The rattling of tea cups when a prospective bride serves tea to the visiting boy, the sounds of busy markets in the backgrounds when a babu goes shopping for his wife – all these make for a great session of play listening. It takes you back to an era away from the modern day India where the joys of living were simple and desires of men and women were easily met within the constraints of an evolving and struggling society.
The next time you are stuck in traffic and want an escape route to go back to an era that you only faintly remember through memories of brilliant serials like Nukkad and Buniyaad, go ahead and switch to All India Radio at 8 pm. Those 15 minutes will be well worth your time.