Colors popular show Balika Vadhu is back on TV. The show aired in 2008 and the telecast of the last episode happened in the year 2016. Due to lockdown, many good shows are making a comeback and BV is one of them. The show focuses on the ill practice of child marriage in India and was cited as one of the best Hindi shows. It stars Surekha Sikri, Avika Gor, Avinash Mukherjee, Anoop Soni, Smita Bansal, Satyajit Sharma and Neha Marda.
Whoever grew up watching Balika Vadhu, very well knows the characters Anandi and Jagya aka Jagdish. Played by Avika Gor and Avinash Mukherjee, everyone loved their cuteness, their friendship and their fights. However, the show dealt seriously the everything that’s wrong with child-marriage.
Koimoi spoke to actor Avinash Mukherjee who played the role of Jagya about the show making a comeback, his fond memories and the show’s relevance.
Read the full interview below:
What do you have to say as Balika Vadhu is back?
I am really happy and looking forward to reliving those moments again. There are a lot of memories attached to the entire show and it is one of the milestones of Indian TV. It’s like history is repeating itself. I just saw the first two episodes today.
Are you feeling nostalgic?
Nostalgia is a very small word. There were goosebumps in every second of the frame. It’s surreal and doesn’t feel like I’ve shot this in this life.
Would you like to share how Balika Vadhu changed your life?
I always dreamt of becoming an actor and doing something good that I will always be remembered for. When I decided to be an actor, I was small in age. When I got Balika Vadhu, I didn’t know much about acting. More than the acting, for the actor the technicalities matter a lot like where to stand, how to deliver your lines, where is the camera placed and where you should look. All these things matter for the performance to go smoothly. Those 2 years were a great learning process, a kind of acting school.
Avika and I used to sit with sound recordists. Usually, actors used to shoot and go back to their vanity. But the two of us were children and as children, you are filled with curiosity. So after the shot, we used to sit with the recordist and learn what he was doing. We used to sit with the camera guy too. They were sweet to us as we were children.
Are you still in touch with Avika?
We spoke to each other during the Insta live. We keep talking to each other. Even she’s happy and feeling nostalgic. We have a WhatsApp group of Balika Vadhu and it’s been active for many years. Everybody is nostalgic and we are planning a reunion after the lockdown gets over.
Anything you would like to share about the show which the fans have no idea about? Any behind-the-scenes story?
I, personally was very lucky to work with such senior actors like Anoop Soni, Surekha Sikri, Smita Bansal, Satyajit Sharma and Neha Marda. They all have taught me many things. I exactly remember what exercises they gave me to teach those things in acing. Neha Marda used to teach me about personality, Satyajit Sharma taught me how to control your breathing while delivering the lines. Anoop Soni taught me how to not fumble and speak clearly. As a child, you have baby tongue and your words are not clean. He taught me that dialogues are very important as that is the story you are telling the audience. It is the responsibility of an actor to deliver it properly. He used to give me examples of Amitabh Bachchan how in any of his scene, there won’t be one word you won’t be able to understand.
How do you think today people will take the show?
Our generation today thinks only Netflix and Hollywood makes good content. The generation born post-2000 or 2004, they haven’t seen Balika Vadhu. Once today’s generation watches the show, they will know that there are good stories made in India also. I’m sure they will like it. My friends and juniors from college are liking. It’s not melodramatic and doesn’t have long drama and pauses.
Even after so many years, the topic Balika Vadhu deals with is relevant today also. What do you have to say about it?
The relevance of the topic is still there today. In a country like India, several practices shown in the show are still prevalent. When we were making the show, we didn’t know it will be this big. Now after more than 10 years, people still remember me as Jagya from Balika Vadhu. It shows how much people love this show and how it impacted too.
The craze for the show is not only in India but also in Vietnam. At one point, I was told the show is aired in 27 countries. If there’s so much reach and people are watching it regularly, it must be affecting. The reach of television is more than that of films.