Hawa Mahal (All India Radio Program) – A primer

Hawa Mahal (All India Radio Program) – A primer

Hawa Mahal is 15 min radio program broadcasted by  All India Radio’s (run by Indian goverment) channel Vividh Bharti. These days there is a FM channel 102.9 MHz where this program is played at 8PM (Mon – Saturday)

Stories, Anecdotes, Snippets, skits, plays or natak, jhalki, vyang in Hindi are what Hawa Mahal deals with. The specialty is the  local stories that are close to us, our culture and stories of this land. In this globalized world where a Television Series like “Game of Thrones” is so popular worldwide and has stormed the world, somewhere these stories have taken backstage. In this globalized you can soon become an outcast who has not seen Game of Thrones, Friends, How I met your mother, Big Bang Theory and what not. I am sure they are good and definitely have their own place with viewers mindshare. With Indian TV spewing out venom in all their daily soap operas that are nowhere close to what story  telling should be all about. Indian storytelling isn’t new, there have been numerous storytellers and their everlasting stories still reverberates in the hearts and minds of people. But with so much clutter out there it is very difficult to  find things that are not shouting it loud. AIR and Hawa Mahal would not resort to modern advertising techniques as they cater to their loyal audience and probably believe that newer generation would never like these. Also it would not be considered “cool” if  you start discussing a play whose telecast was done last night on Hawa Mahal rather it would be considered perfectly okay discussing the various tidbits of “Game of Thrones” not only in office but also social media. Nevertheless I am still old worldly and somehow like listening to these kind of stuff. I should put the disclaimer that I have not seen GOT and Friends and probably a big outcast already 🙂

I have started to listen to Hawa Mahal again and many of the stories are just amazing. These stories are probably little dated sometimes but still have the Indian touch which makes them all the more interesting. I have gathered some of the episodes online and collated into a soundcloud channel.

Bin Bah Ka Sweater – A sweet little Indian love story, very subtle, very Indian                    (Half Sweater)

Dhoop Ka Tax – In today’s scenario of various taxes seen, this one is quite valid even today (Tax on Sunlight)

Ataichi Case – Married couples will definitely find this very relevant and interesting (Suitcase)

All  copyright lies with AIR and their respective writers/directors on these links. I have just gathered it from online sources and put together on soundcloud. This is kind of advertisement for AIR and Hawa Mahal Program.

Hopefully this will encourage more listeners to enjoy many of these masterpieces. But these can only be enjoyed by Hindi Listeners. I am not sure there may be local programmes as well which I am not aware of.

I am sure any anthology in Hawa Mahal will be a very good collection to have especially for people who are driving their cars and that also in extreme traffic.

Even if I get few people back to listening Hawa Mahal on AIR’s Channel Vividh Bharti I will be very glad.



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