As of March 27, 694 cases have been reported of the pandemic Coronavirus (COVID-19) in India, asper the official data by the health ministry. 45 people have been cured and 16 death have been reported till date. India has suspended all visas and barred travel from Afghanistan, Philippines, EU, UK, China, Malaysia and mandatory 14-day quarantine from several other countries and the Prime Minister has issued a 21-day countrywide lockdown starting from 25 March to April 15.

India has also closed the India-Pakistan border and restricted passenger movement at the border with Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, and Myanmar.  The government is monitoring all suspected cases and issued preventive advisories with states declaring the disease an epidemic shutting down all educational institutions, monuments, parks, gyms, swimming pools, pubs and banning large gatherings. All domestic airplanes and trains have ceased operation.

PM Narendra Modi declared a three-week nationwide lockdown starting midnight Tuesday, explaining that it was the only way of breaking the Covid-19 infection cycle. This essentially extended the lockdown from most states and Union Territories to the entire country and provided a more definite timeline. “Social distancing is the only way to break the cycle of infection,” he said. All other lockdown conditions, such as the availability of essential commodities, remain the same, the government clarified.

In his second address to the nation on the Covid-19 outbreak, Modi told people to stay inside their homes for 21 days, warning that if they didn’t do so the country would be set back 21 years and families would be destroyed. His last address was on the outbreak was on March 19.

Now that the country is in a lockdown for the next 21 days, popular television channels are trying out different measures to keep their viewers entertained.

We live in the most amazing times — human race has never been this still, at least in the last 50 years, yet nature is rebooting itself. With the current lockdown in place due to the spread of Covid-19, people have been forced to stay indoors.

Amidst the lockdown, fans have been demanding to bring back 90’s popular shows like Ramayan and Mahabharata. While Union Minister Prakash Javadekar on Friday morning announced that Ramayan is making a comeback on Doordarshan, fans were waiting for Mahabharat’s return as well. Later in the day, the day announced that they are bringing back BR Chopra’s Mahabharat which is going to entertain people once again. Where these two shows used to air on the small screen in the 90s, people used to forget everything and watch them. Now that the citizens of the country are locked down at their homes, they want to go down the memory lane and enjoy these shows on TV.

On popular demand, hit TV mythological serial from 1980s, Ramayana, is back on Indian television. Ramayan featured Arun Govil as Ram, Deepika Chikhalia as Sita and Sunil Lahri as Lakshman. Late Dara Singh potrayed Hanuman and Arvind

Also, Doordarshan has decided to re-telecast the mythological series Mahabharata on public demand, Union Information and Broadcasting (I&B) Minister Prakash Javadekar announced on Twitter that the series will be aired at 12 noon and 7 PM in the evening.

Trivedi was featured as Ravana. The show was originally telecast from January 25, 1987 to July 31, 1988.

A team of experts is busy enhancing the visual quality of Ramanand Sagar’s television serial Ramayan, which is set to be telecast on Doordarshan (DD) after more than three decades, along with other popular classics such as BR Chopra’s Mahabharat, as part of a special initiative by Prasar Bharati during the nationwide lockdown.

Detective series Byomkesh Bakshi and Circus, featuring then newcomer actor Shah Rukh Khan, are among the TV serials scheduled to be telecast on DD channels in the next few days.

On Thursday, I&B minister Prakash Javadekar asked officials to come up with ideas that can “educate, inform and entertain” the audiences and also send across a positive vibe. “Revival of old serials on DD is part of the same strategy,” said an official. “Happy to announce that DD Bharati will relay from tomorrow Saturday 28th March, the popular serial ‘Mahabharat’ at 12 noon and 7 pm every day: Prakash Javadekar, Information & Broadcasting Minister (file pic),” Javadekar tweeted.
“It was shot in low band using digibeta tools, which have been obsolete now for over 15-20 years. Now, it is all digital and advanced chip-based formats. We have retrieved the content for 50 episodes and are working on the rest of the content now. The changes will not affect the experience of the viewers as the serial will retain its essence, according to the official. “The music, the frames, everything remains the same,” he said.

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