"Premchand's 'Idgah' urges us to retain our innocence," says Vinay Pathak

After passing out from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, Vinay Pathak could have stayed in the US to pursue a career in the arts but in 1995, encouraged by a mentor, he returned to India. Pathak made his acting debut in Deepa Mehta’s 'Fire'(1996) and subsequently went on to work actively in television, theatre, and in films including hits like 'Khosla Ka Ghosla', 'Bheja Fry', 'Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi', 'My Name Is Khan', 'Badlapur' and many more. He remains deeply appreciative of Indian writing and was thrilled to get the opportunity of narrating Prem Chand's classic story 'Idgah' in Zee Theatre's literary anthology, 'Koi Baat Chale.' He is also confident that the story's Kannada and Telugu translations will be loved by audiences in Karnataka, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh.

Explaining what drew him to 'Idgah', Pathak says, "I read this story in school as well as college and its values of love, empathy, and generosity have stayed with me. Narrating this story in 'Koi Baat Chale' took me back to my childhood when dramatic narratives were part of school activities and even at home. This story urges us to retain our innocence and encourages us to be as pure and loving as Hamid. I am glad that now it has been translated into regional languages to reach a diverse audience. They will be moved by the manner in which Premchand has painted the naivety of childhood, its challenges, gifts, and inexpressible feelings."
As he narrates 'Idgah,' Pathak brings alive the story of a four-year-old orphan named Hamid, who lives with his grandmother Amina and wants to gift her something special on Eid. About the contemporary relevance of stories like this, Pathak says, "Today's generation may be far more well-informed and evolved than we were at their age, however, their connection with Indian literature may not be as strong as their awareness of the rest of the world. I am glad that Zee Theatre is initiating projects like 'Koi Baat Chale' which will hopefully kindle their interest in iconic authors like Premchand. As for me, I was very happy to be a part of 'Koi Baat Chale' as it gave me an opportunity to bring my favorite story to today’s audience.”
Directed by film, television, and theatre veteran Seema Pahwa, 'Idgah' will be available on Tata Play Theatre.
( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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