The re-telecast of the 1987 iconic serial Ramayan, based on the mythological epic managed to capture the interest and the imagination of the Indian audience once again during the lockdown. In a tweet, Doordarshan announced that the show created a ‘world record’ and garnered more than 77 million views on April 16th leaving behind The Big Bang Theory and Game of Thrones that had only 18 million and 17.4 million views.
However, the claim was refuted by a Mint Lounge report that stated that the finale of American comedy-drama M*A*S*H actually holds this record, with 106 million viewers on February 28, 1983. However, in a group interview, Ramayan creator Ramanand Sagar’s son Prem Sagar, Dipika Chikhlia who played Sita and Sunil Lahri who played Lakshman in the Ramayan has reacted to the same. Prem said, “At a time when you’ve Netflix, Amazon, this is big. The idea is to bring it (the show) to this generation and teach them. To really bring them back into the fold of ideal living.”
Rebroadcast of #Ramayana on #Doordarshan smashes viewership records worldwide, the show becomes most watched entertainment show in the world with 7.7 crore viewers on 16th of April pic.twitter.com/hCVSggyqIE
— Doordarshan National (@DDNational) April 30, 2020
Dipika refrained from commenting and said that she had ‘no clue’ about the record. On the other hand, Sunil said that M*A*S*H’s record of touching 106 million in 1983 was a combination of “Netflix and Amazon” all put together (although the streaming services were launched only post 2010). He added, “So in that sense Ramayan has created a bigger impact. It’s a world record in spite of so many options.”
While the claim of Ramayan setting a world record is debatable, it cannot be denied that the serial saw immense love and appreciation from the audience and it registered highest-ever rating for a Hindi General Entertainment Channel (GEC) programme since 2015, when the BARC started measuring the television audience, according to a statement released by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
(Source: Mint Lounge)