Gone are the days when children spent time outdoors playing in the sun and running around. While kids play in the playgrounds in their neighbourhood, it is mostly cricket, swings or rides. Moreover, gadgets, smartphones and tablets have substituted outdoor games, with children constantly glued to online gaming. The simple pleasure of playing outside evokes nostalgia. Children running around, playing games like Gilli Danda, Kancha, Pithu etc., have been lost somewhere.
On Children’s Day, &TV artists get nostalgic, talk about these long-lost childhood games, and encourage children to go out and play! These include Neha Joshi (Yashoda, Doosri Maa), Yogesh Tripathi (Daroga Happu Singh, Happu Ki Ultan Paltan), and Shubhangi Atre (Angoori Bhabi, Bhabiji Ghar Par Hai).
Neha Joshi, essaying Yashoda in &TV’s show Doosri Maa, shares, “My childhood was fun. I used to stay in Nashik, and many cousins used to stay around. We had a long list of games to play whenever we got together—starting with Lukka Chhupi (Hide and Seek). It was our favourite of all time. Apart from that, kho-kho and lagori were a few games we used to enjoy. I recall our elders becoming irritated with us because we were so engrossed in our games that even after listening, they would call us back home or request food, and we would continue playing despite this. The innocence of those games will never come back. The fun of a virtual world with elaborate graphics and multi-players cannot simply match the joy of playing our hearts out, even if there is dust, dirt, and scorching sun. So, this Children’s Day, I intend to play these games on our sets with Aayudh Bhanushali (Krishna) and other children of our show, and while giving them a glimpse of our childhood days, I would like to rejoice in those beautiful memories”.
Yogesh Tripathi, essaying Daroga Happu Singh in &TV’s show Happu Ki Ultan Paltan, says, “I never had these fancy gadgets or expensive toys in my childhood, yet my siblings and I found plenty of ways to stay occupied and were rarely bored. I still remember playing Gilli Danda in my hometown during my summer school breaks with all my friends, with whom I am still in touch and who are doing great in their lives. This game is a sort of fusion between cricket and baseball, and I believe it is somewhere lost; in villages, kids still play this game, but city kids have no idea about this amazing game. I remember my friends and me having one Gilli, a small stick that we used to hit with the danda or the longer stick as far as we could. After hitting the Gilli, we all need to run to a particular point before the other team can retrieve the Gilli. Gilli Danda is also known as Lippa in Uttar Pradesh. Our childhood memories are the greatest treasure of our lives. And let’s relieve our childhood and bring back the culture of outdoor games. I urge every parent to encourage their child to take up outdoor games, especially our Indian games, this Children’s Day. Here’s wishing everyone a very Happy Children’s Day to all.”
Shubhangi Atre, essaying Angoori Bhabi in &TV’s show Bhabiji Ghar Par Hai, says, “Kancha was one of the most popular games of our time. It saddens me that today’s kids have no idea about the fun this outdoor game used to give us. Marbles used to amaze me as a child; I always imagined them to be like planets, and I still have a variety of marble collections at home. I brought varieties of marbles to play with in school, and my classmates and I used to play with those marbles during our school lunch breaks. The game was called “Kancha” or “Goli.” In the game, we have to hit the selected target, “Kancha”, using our marble ball, and the winner takes all Kanchas from the rest of the players. I used to be called the champion of this game, and because of this game, my marble collection kept increasing (laughs). I thank my parents for giving me a beautiful childhood, and I am trying to provide the same to my daughter. Let’s make this Children’s Day fun and teach our children these long-lost street games we grew up playing. It’s the best way to celebrate childhood and also allows us to teach these games to future generations. Happy Children’s Day to all.”
Watch Doosri Maa at 8:00 pm, Happu Ki Ultan Paltan at 10:00 pm, and Bhabiji Ghar Par Hai at 10:30 pm, airing every Monday to Friday only on &TV!