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By Roshni Chakrabarty
The children’s animation industry in India has long been dominated by foreign characters of international fame. Local successes are very few and far between and are easily forgotten. Mickey Mouse was created in 1928, while Tom and Jerry were born in 1940. Even the recently popular ‘Doraemon’ started off as a manga in 1969, and was later turned into a TV series in 1973.
It takes a long time for a cartoon show to garner massive popularity. Besides, the cost of producing such a cartoon is quite high, while the success rates are low. As a result, Indian children have long been familiar with only some very popular international cartoons, which are at times, dubbed in Hindi, as procuring these shows from abroad is more economical than creating fresh ones.
Ek Anek Aur Ekta, the first Indian animation released in 1974 was only seven minutes long. The very first animated Indian TV series Ghayab Aya was telecast on Doordarshan in June 17, 1990. However, these were the only Indian animations available at the time.
In the 90’s Doordarshan, being the only primary channel for Indians, telecasted animated series such as Mowgli, Tale Spin, Duck Tales, and other Disney cartoon shows. Soon, Cartoon Network became the first 24-hour cartoon channel in India. Within a few years after that, there cropped up a number of TV channels for kids such as the Disney Channel, POGO, Nickelodeon India, Hungama TV, Animax India, and Toon Disney, which primarily showed cartoon series apart from game shows and educational programs.
Despite the country’s rich television and film history, Indian animators used to routinely be hired by foreign production houses to work in the backend. This resulted in a lack of story-telling sense among them. Besides, children don’t mind if a cartoon character doesn’t look Indian, and as such, there was little to no demand for Indian originated content.
In the recent times, however, despite the economic constraints, the Indian animation industry is slowly and steadily churning out cartoon series based on Indian characters and derived from Hindu mythology.
1. Chhota Bheem
This series, since its first appearance on the Pogo channel in 2008, has made a massive climb in popularity. Now, Chhota Bheem merchandise is all the rage among kids.
Created by the CEO of Green Gold Animation Rajiv Chilaka, ‘Chhota Bheem’ features the very brave, intelligent and extremely strong nine-year-old Bheem, who lives in the fictional town on Dholakpur in rural India. Bheem’s character is evidently based on the super-strong Pandava brother from Mahabharatha.
The cartoon series follows Bheem and his friends in their efforts to assist Dholakpur’s Raja Indravarma in protecting the city-state and even neighboring kingdoms from various forces of evil. It also shows the rivalry between Bheem and Kalia Pehalwan, a jealous ten-year-old bully who goes around the town with his sidekicks Dholu and Bholu. Their plots to defeat and embarrass Bheem never succeed.
2. Mighty Raju
Also produced by Green Gold Animation, this is a spin-off of the Chhota Bheem series. The series, focusing on 4-year-old Raju with superhuman strength and a strong moral code, is more of an animated film series as each episode is of one hour.
Raju’s mother Sandhya, while pregnant with him, had mistakenly consumed a compound called Neutrino, created by Raju’s scientist father Swami. This resulted in Raju being born with super powers which he uses to fight his father’s former partner and scientist rival Karati. Raju tries to do good in the world without expecting any reward, and while risking his own safety.
3. Roll No. 21
Airing on Cartoon Network India, this award winning series features a modern take on the Krishna-Kansa rivalry and is a hit with school-going children as it deals with the problems a student faces.
‘Roll No. 21’ shows Kansa reincarnated as Principal Kanishk of the Mathura Anath Ashram (Mathura Orphanage and School) who plans to take over Mathura and the world with support from his demons and minions. However, his plans are always foiled by Kris, the reincarnation of Krishna, who is a student at the orphanage. Kris keeps the goodness alive in the orphanage children and uses his wit and mythical powers to fend off Kanishk’s evil plans.
4. Little Krishna
This 3D computer animated series, which started airing on Nickelodeon in May 2009, was created after extensive and thorough research into the legends revolving around the childhood pastimes of Lord Krishna. It goes beyond the popularly known tales to present a truly exclusive content to the audience.
‘Little Krishna,’ depicting the traditional tales from Krishna’s childhood and his interactions with the Vrindavan villagers, is based on the writings of the Six Goswamis of Vrindavana, the Srimad Bhagavatam chronicles, and seven years of research work by ISKCON Bangalore devotees. It then underwent a further two and a half years of production and research work by BIG Animations.
The show combines motifs of Indian design with classical Western styles to produce a contemporary format. Though it was primarily created in English, it was later dubbed in several other Indian languages, including Hindi.
5. Krishna Balram
This is yet another Hindu mythology-based production by Green Gold Animation, which depicts the childhood pastimes of Lord Krishna and his brother Lord Balram. It shows Krishna and his friends, including Radha, embarking on thrilling adventures based on Lord Krishna’s time-honored tales.
6. The Adventures of Tenali Raman
This was the first Indian animated television series to gain this much acclaim and was made available in both English and Hindi languages. Produced by Toonz Animation Studios, the series aired on Cartoon Network in June 2003.
It depicted the tales featuring Tenali Raman – a much loved character from Indian folklore. It was one of the first Indian produced cartoon series acquired by Cartoon Network to increase its hold on the Indian audience and also make the channel more relevant to the Indian market.
7. Chorr Police
This funny cartoon series by Green Gold Animation airs on Disney XD only in Hindi.
Anthony, a Mumbai slum dweller, who steals from the rich and gives it to the poor, is called the Robinhood Slumdog of Mumbai. Each episode begins with the ‘Chorr’ Anthony stealing something and trying to escape the crime scene with the ‘Police’ Lovely Singh, a muscular Sardar in police uniform, chasing him. Anthony, at the end of each episode, narrowly manages to escape.
Very realistically, Lovely Singh is said to have come to Mumbai initially to be an actor, failing which, he joins the police force.
8. Motu Patlu
The India CGI animated Sitcom television series, adapted from the classic comic strip on Lot Pot Magazine, premiered on Nickelodeon in October 2012.
The cartoon series features two close friends Motu and Patlu, living in the fictional city of Furfuri Nagar. ‘Jon the Don’, who longs to be a well-known criminal, along with his henchmen, form a villain group whose plans are always foiled thanks to the duo. The episodes show how the two friends land in hilariously troubling situations, usually initiated by Motu, and how Patlu solves the problem, often depending on sheer luck.
The series theme song ‘Motu Aur Patlu Ki Jodi’ is sung by Sukhwinder Singh.
9. Kumbh Karan
Broadcasted by Pogo, this series was released in June 2010. The show follows the twin brothers Kumbh and Karan, living in a small colony named Ajab-Gajabpur.
The plump 10-year-old Kumbh is lazy, sleepy and hungry. He is extremely strong but has a soft heart. His character is evidently based on the mythic giant from Ramayana, Kumbhkarna, who was one of Ravana’s brothers. He slept for half a year and could only be awoken with the aroma of food. On the other hand, Kumbh’s brother, Karan, is agile and smart. The cartoon series depicts the various quests the brothers embark upon along with their pet porcupine Kaddu, and their friend Tara.
This 2D animation series was initially a comic series named ‘Cricket Miracles’ developed by Toonz Animation. It was then turned into an animated series which aired on Discovery Kids.
‘Howzzattt’ depicts the adventures of a group of cricket crazy youngsters calling themselves ‘Gulab Nagar Junglees’ who coach under Sweety Aunty and play matches against bullies who refuse to adhere to the rules of the game. Each episode shows a cricket match against different opponents as the children overcome various obstacles to attain success. Most of the time the challenge comes in the form of Thakral, a rich neighbourhood businessman who longs to acquire the Gulab Nagar Society land.
Owing to India’s cricket craze, the cartoon series quickly gained popularity leading the producers to launch ‘Howzzattt Game’ for Android mobile phones.
When you become a mother, you tend to forget about your own needs because you are so focused on your child. With the baby keeping you busy all day and night, your skincare takes a backseat. It's not always changes in skin texture and looks post-pregnancy are a bad thing, but not taking care of your skin may lead to acne, melasma, stretch marks, puffy eyes, and even dark circles. Syed Nazim, Dermatologist, Aesthetic and Hair Transplant Surgeon, Royal Lush Skin Clinic Saket, New Delhi, shares simple and easy tips for you to follow, to get a glowing post-pregnancy.
* Cleansing: As you sleep, your skin goes through a renewal cycle, by dispensing toxins and debris. So you only need a light-textured cleanser to wash your face with a face wash that is suitable for your skin type.
* Steam: Take steam for 2-3 days a week, it will help you to open up your clogged pores.
* Scrub & face pack: Use a face scrub, to remove the dead skin cells, scrub your face for like 5 minutes and wash it with normal tap water. It will help you to make your skin softer and radiant, leave the mask until it dries off.
* Toner & moisturizer: Apply toner to your face, look for clarifying toners that rebalance your pH to maintain the pH value of your skin. In the end, you only have to moisturize your face, to give hydration.
* Steal baby products: Baby products are always mild in nature so that the baby's sensitive skin doesn't have to compromise. They are created to lock moisture in babies skin. So, you can also use them. Whether it's a body oil, lotion or cream, apply some on your skin every time you're applying them on your baby. If you do this, you can flaunt your skin, this way, you don't have to dedicate a specific time every day for your skincare.
When you become a mother, you tend to forget about your own needs because you are so focused on your child. | Photo by Jenna Norman on Unsplash
* Keep all skincare needs in one place: Organize all your skincare products in one place, this organization will help you way much better than anything. Make use of your "me time" and devote it properly to pamper yourself.
* Streaming your routine: Make a proper timetable, for your week how many days you are going to deep cleanse your skin in a week.
If we talk about the baby skincare routine this is important too. As the baby's skin is too sensitive and they are interacting with such a harsh environment -- pollution, high temperature etc. Don't worry there are some simple and easy enough tips. Here, what you should know, with regards to bath, diapering, selecting items and that's just the beginning.
* Bath time: Babies need two to three baths a week in warm, not hot water to stay clean. The initial step to an extraordinary child shower is to track down the ideal temperature. Tip: Fill the bath without any more than 2 to 3 creeps of water. To keep your child from getting cold while you wash them, routinely pour cupfuls of water over their shoulders.
* Diaper Basics: There are a lot of things you'll have to do for your little one when they're an infant, like changing your baby's diaper regularly, cleaning tenderly however completely each time with child wipes. Make the surface saturated yet dry simultaneously as well. There are countless myths around diaper rashes that it is caused because of the usage of diapers. But no, it is due to a lack of attention and knowledge about the correct time to change the diaper. Else it will get worse for your child.
* Awareness of Products: Always read the product label before purchasing products for your infant. It's ideal to avoid chemical and alcohol-based products. Use products that are made explicitly for infants.
The baby's skin is too sensitive and they are interacting with such a harsh environment -- pollution, high temperature etc. | Photo by Jill Sauve on Unsplash
Newborn babies are so delicate, requiring a lot of care and attention. A single mistake or slip of mind can make things worse. Keep your infant's skin saturated, as well, so consistently have a stockpile of moisturizers around. But excessive oil can cause cradle caps, and dryness can create painful scenarios. If your child is facing such issues you need to consult a certified dermatologist.
(Article originally published on IANS life) (IANS/MBI)
Keywords: temperature,sensitive,babies, skincare,child,products
A couple of years ago, finding a strand of grey hair meant visiting the parlor to cover it up. Women and men refused to admit their age, and refused to let it show. Be it moustache, eyebrows, or hair on the head, it was dyed a luscious black, or reddish-brown for those who wanted to go natural. Today, the trend of coloring hair has nothing to do with age. Young boys and girls sport bright colors and hairstyles, which is now a marker of how modern one can be.
This notion of modernity associated with neon streaks and an almost gothic look originates from the ancient Egyptian civilization, where it was considered fashionable to look different from the natural features one was born with. Kohl, lipstick, perfume, and makeup were the inventions of those who hoped to live even after death. Likewise, they were the first people to discover hair dye. Initially, they dyed their hair black, to cover the grey. They used compounds that were extracted from plants, but some of them were lethal. So, they took to extracting the color from fermented leeches.
This was when a chemical was discovered to gently lighten hair color instead of completely bleaching it, and since then, there have been varying degrees of blonde and brown hair. Image credit: Photo by Jessie Dee Dabrowski on Unsplash
When bleach was discovered, women used it to achieve a yellow color, which became known as the sign of prostitutes. The focus shifted to naturally red hair when Queen Elizabeth took the throne, as she suffered from a genetic mutation which caused this. Red heads became more common in Scotland and Ireland, and everywhere else, black hair was still the norm.
When William Perkins discovered mauve during an experiment that went wrong, the concept of mixing two or more chemicals together to create a dye became well-known. So colorless chemicals were developed and mixed in varying ratios to dye hair. When the movie Platinum Blonde was released, the trend of having pale hair increased greatly. People began to go blonde everywhere. This was when a chemical was discovered to gently lighten hair color instead of completely bleaching it, and since then, there have been varying degrees of blonde and brown hair.
Youngsters prefer to sport bright, flashy colors, like teal, blue, purple, and even pink. Image credit: Photo by Tom van Kessel on Unsplash
With the arrival of pop-culture and its influence on the world, these mundane colors are reserved for the elderly. Youngsters prefer to sport bright, flashy colors, like teal, blue, purple, and even pink. Every time a new star sports a different color, the trend sparks interest in others, and sweeps across the globe like a wildfire. Hair dye has come a long way since the time of the Egyptians in the first century. Two thousand years hence, it has the potential to grow into so much more.
Keywords: Hair Color, Hair Dye, Egyptians, Perkins, Pop Culture
The history of Daryaganj goes back to the era of Mughal dynasty, and so its history is as old as the old city of Shahjahanabad, now Chandni Chowk. Interestingly, this market was known as Faiz Bazaar in the Mughal era and was considered as an important commercial place.
In fact, at that time this area was very posh, and had beautiful houses on both sides of a stream from a hauz (meaning, water storage tank) flowing down the centre. Not only this, trees were lined up for shade and it looked like a marvellous garden had been turned into a market.
Also, there used to be Lohe ka Pull which used to connect shops lined on both sides of the market starting from Delhi Gate to the Iron Bridge, but now the pull no longer exists. Well, there's no doubt that the old city of Shahjahanabad was beautiful crafted!
One of the most beautiful things about Daryaganj is its famous book market, known as the Sunday Patri Kitaab Bazaar. Sunday is specifically added here because the book market takes place only on Sundays, that, too, from 9am till 6pm.
Booksellers set up their shops on Patri (footpath). Hence, the name is Sunday Patri Kitaab Bazaar. Photo by Flickr.
In this market, you can find all kinds and genres of books at cheapest rates. In fact, some booksellers sell books according to kilos, and this is really astounding to see. From stationery to art supplies, you can find everything here and that, too, in a lot of variety.
It is interesting to see that some of the shopkeepers of Daryaganj book market are selling books from the past 50-60 years. Not only this, Daryaganj book market is also famous for its branded electronic goods and science lab equipments.
Apart from this, you can also find some of the lost traces of British rule, which once existed in India, in this market in the form of coins, photographs, and even their personal belongings. There is absolutely no doubt that Daryaganj book market offers a lot more than books, as it offers glimpses of the past.
So, if you are someone who is not just into books but also colonisation of India, then you must visit Daryaganj book market and experience a mixture of past and present!
Keywords: Daryaganj Book Market, Books, Old Delhi, Chandni Chowk, India, Mughal Dynasty.