The BBC’s India Season comes round full steam! From India’s busiest railways to the rich and cultured history of the country with its diverse community; we get a fresh look at what India is all about in 2015.
What is it about India that fascinates the rest of the world? Is the lifestyle that varies from region to region? Is the fact that the population of India is incomprehensible? The mind boggles with how any system could work, with what seems like total chaos to a westerner. Or is it simply their sense of humour that is taken for granted, even in the most sensitive situation?
The BBC’s India Season takes us through India visually and via the audible airwaves, to overload our senses like never before.
We have BBC 4 the White Mughal: A Story In Art from Edenwood Productions, historian William Dalrymple exploring the love affair between the British diplomat James Achilles Kirkpatrick and Khair un-Nissa, the Muslim princess he married. Or maybe on BBC Radio 2, Shilpa Shetty takes us through the music of the Bollywood Industry, playing some of her favourite tracks and enlightening us on some of the behind the scenes of the glamorous industry that everyone is dying to be part of. Then we have Sue Perkins who throws herself into the deep end by going into the heart of Kolkata, once known as the ‘Black hole’, to show us life in poverty and what it means to the locals and how the city continues to evolve. There is so much more to view and listen to, that you will think Christmas has come early!
I had a sneak preview of the new, one off special episode from the 90’s – Goodness Gracious Me. Well, you are in for a treat, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Meera Syal, Neena Wadia and Kulvinder Ghir have come together once again. They give a refreshing performance of their old slapstick, tongue in cheek, comedy spoofs updated and relevant to today. The preview was followed by Q&A hosted by Nihal – BBC Radio & TV presenter. I must say, although it was refreshing to see this timeless comedy, I do have to ask the question is it what we really need? A lot of time and effort has been spent on reviving old shows, when perhaps we should be exploring at what young Asians today have to offer us. Instead, talent is imported which is not what I would want as a British Asian. I would like to think that the next generation has a future here in the UK.
Nevertheless, Kim Shillinglaw Controller, BBC Two and Four has bought us India Season which will take us through seasons of breath taking emotions.
BBC’s India Season starts next week on both forums – Television & Radio. World’s Busiest Railway 2015 will be aired on BBC 2 on Monday 24th August 2015 at 9pm Followed by the Goodness Gracious Me Special on Tuesday 25th August at 10pm. Put your feet up with a nice cup of chai and immerse yourself into a season of vibrancy.
Ms Safirah Irani