On September 14, 1949, 65 years ago, the Indian Constitution adopted Hindi as the national language. And since then every year, the day is celebrated as Hindi Divas. Keeping that in mind, city-based theatre company, Swatantra Theatre has organised two plays — Dakghar and Komal Gandhar — to showcase the versatile literature of the language. The plays will be staged over two days at the Main Theatre at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII).
Stills from the play, Komal Gandhar
Abhijeet Choudhary who has directed both the plays, says, “We do a lot of plays in Hindi, and wanted to celebrate Hindi Diwas. We feel it is our responsibility to promote Hindi as a language, as lately a lot of people feel bad to talk in Hindi, and look down upon those who do. We want to spread the message that this is a nice language. Both the plays are famous and have a very good theme.”
Written by Rabindranath Tagore, Dakghar revolves around a young boy named Amal, whose favourite timepass is stand in the village courtyard and ask passers-by about the places they have been to. The construction of a new post office nearby prompts the imaginative Amal to fantasise about receiving a letter from the king to become his postman. The play looks into whether or not Amal’s dream will come true.
The second play, Komal Gandhar, written by Dr Shankar Shesh, who is also the writer of the famous film and play, Gharonda is based on the life of Gandhari, a character from the epic Mahabharatha. Mother of the Kauravas and also the queen at the throne, Gandhari’s story will take one into a different world, says Dhanashree Heblikar, one of the participating actors .
He says, “We all have heard and known that Gandhari who was married to Dhritrashtra tied her eyes with a band to equate herself with her husband, who was blind since birth. But this play shows that the reality is just not on the surface. There is so much depth to every question. It’s about how a woman completely changed the picture of Kuruvansh, one of the most powerful dynasties at one time.”
Heblikar informs that the play also highlights the cause of downfall of Kauravas with a different point of view altogether. “Bhishma, the mentor of all the Mahabharata, never wanted to let the big dynasty of Hastinapur fall. He wanted a legal heir of Dhritrashtra to handle the kingdom despite the fact that Duryodhana’s cousins Pandavas were much more eligible to handle it. But Bhishma, wanted a proper lineage to follow. He was not willing to hand it over to the Pandavas,” he adds.
On: September 14 and 15, 5 pm onwards
At: Main Theatre, Film and Television Institute of India, Law College Road.
Why do we celebrate Hindi Diwas?
September 14 is celebrated as Hindi Diwas because on this day in 1949, the Constituent Assembly of India had adopted Hindi written in Devnagari script as the official language of the Union.