Popular Old Doordarshan Serials List (And The Best Way to Watch Them Now)

Thank you Doordarshan
Thank you Doordarshan | Source

Remember the old serials which you watched leaving all other things. Even the playground. Often, in many households there were set hours when T.V was switched on. There were marked hours for studying, playing, and watching T.V. I can't imagine that sort of planning just for watching T.V with the advent of satellite television service, also not many people bother to look how much T.V their child watches.

Those days were special and would be remembered for many years to come. Even the ads felt great to watch, especially I remember ads like Paan Parag, Cadbury (lady dancing in the ground), Lijjat Papad, Nirma Super (Yes that one with the lines "Maan Gaye Deepika ji, Aap Ki Paar Ki Nazar and Nirma Super Dono ko"). Search Youtube many can be found there. Also at the end of the page I have embed some videos that I found.

Doordarshan was the only channel and we had so much fun. Whereas now we have more than 100 and still can't keep that remote aside.

The magic that they had can't be replaced. But surely we can experience it once again - though not completely as many of these have not been uploaded or does not seem to have launched their DVDs. None the less it will give you a nostalgic vibe.

As a child growing up in the 90's serials like Alif Laila, Chandrakanta, Malgudi Days, Byomkesh Bakshi, mythological serials like Mahabharat, Shri Krishna, and comedies like Dekh Bhai Dekh, Tu Tu Main Main, Shrimaan Shrimati are very close to my heart. But I have made sure that I include many other older ones which were very famous.

Though I'm in my 20's unlike many others in my age group I'm a big fan of old movies, or rather I'd say that fan of all old things. I've a good liking for older things that can be any thing from movies to vintage dress collection.

Most of my leisure time (which is very less) is spent learning and watching (like History TV) about historic things.

So let's have a recap of some of the most popular doordarshan serials of yesteryear. I have also included links of official Youtube channels which have videos of these serials, of course not all the serials have a channel, but the shows which have are included and will also update as and when others are added. No illegal links over here. So don't expect links to torrent sites or download links pointing to illegal sites (which are always fake). Of course, you can always use a free downloader to download these videos.

Also information below if you want to buy these shows. And a surprise program which you might have watched at the end of this article.

Should Old Doordarshan Shows be Re-Telecasted?

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1| Alif Laila

The extremely hit series where Shah Nawaz played the lead character excellently. Some of the well-known and easily coming to mind episodes are Sindhbad Sailor, Alladin and his Magical lamp etc.

Atif Laila
Atif Laila

You can get the entire collection of 143 episodes from Mosarbaer which is 20 set DVD. The collection can be bought at about Rs. 2400 with each episode being 23 minutes along with English subtitles.


2| Buniyaad

Buniyaad serial DVD cover
Buniyaad serial DVD cover

Buniyaad went on to become a popular serial which showcased the life of a common person after India's partition and the after effects it had.

Starring Alok Nath in the prime-role of a freedom fighter. Some other known faces which still can be seen in the movie industry are Dilip Tahil and Soni Razdan.

3| Byomkesh Bakshi

The crime detection series based on the novel written by Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay. The show still has a cult following in which Rajit Kapur played the lead role.

Well crafted episodes with attention to every minute detail makes this one a treat to watch. Fortunately I got to catch a few episodes recently on DD. Still the plot seems so real and unique.

The Menagerie and Other Byomkesh Bakshi Mysteries
The Menagerie and Other Byomkesh Bakshi Mysteries

I found this book on which the show is based upon. The book has few selected stories of Byomkesh Bakshi. The first story Menagerie was made into a film by legendary director Satyajit Ray Chiriakhana in 1967.


4| Bharat Ek Khoj

Shyam Benegal's direction brought forward to us the history of India based on the book by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru known as "Discovery of India". The series has altogether 53 episodes showcasing every aspect of Indian history such as the story of Caste Formation, Ramayan, Emperor Ashoka, Kalidas, Akbar - The Great and many more.

The vivid and simplistic approach to showcase India's history was indeed marvelous.

The Discovery of India
The Discovery of India

This book is the mother of this show on which it is based. Written by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru when he was imprisoned in 1942-1946 for his participation in the freedom movement.


5| Chandrakanta

Shikha Swaroop as the new Chandrakanta which featured on Sahara One
Shikha Swaroop as the new Chandrakanta which featured on Sahara One | Source

I still remember the title song sung by Sonu Nigam. Of course we were small to know that it has been sung by Sonu Nigam. But the title song was really great which goes like this.....so sing along...."Chandrakanta ki kahani, Yeh Mana Hai Purani, Lohgad Vijaygad Mein Thi Takraar, Lohgad Ka Tha Jo Rajkimar Chandrakanta Se Karta Tha Pyar".

Lead role played by Shahbaz Khan as Prince Virendra Singh, Chandrakanta as Shikha Swaroop, and Kroor Singh as Akhilendra Mishra.

6| Circus

Enter Shahrukh Khan. Shahrukh played the lead role of Raghavan, a Malayalee circus artist. Other actors who went to make a name for themselves after this are Renuka Sahane (love-interest of Shahrukh), and Ashutosh Gowarikar (?).

Nobody predicted that Shahrukh would go on to rule Bollywood circles. I'm sure not even he would have thought about it. Somethings just happen, isn't it?

Watch This Episode Here of Circus

7| Dekh Bhai Dekh

Is Rang Badalti Duniya Mein...Kya Tera Hai Kya Mera...Dekh Bhai Dekh.....

The complete family drama-comedy show which will definitely bring a gushing smile on your face - and that's guaranteed. Shekhar Suman, Navin Nischol, Deven Bhojani, Farida Jalal were some of the members of the famous Diwan family.

I remember the character of Shekhar Suman where he used to recite his dialogue non-stop, the character of Gareema played by Deven Bhojani, and will you ever forget the short man Liliput for his role. One other thing about Liliput is that he is the one who has written the show.

Or do you remember the start of the serial showing the name of Jaya Bachchan zooming from the backside.

8| DuckTales

DVD/VCD cover of DuckTales
DVD/VCD cover of DuckTales

It feels so amazing to watch this one again. If I remember properly it was shown at the evening between 6.30 to 7.00. Running from school just to watch Uncle Scrooge in his quest for accumulating more wealth was amazing.

The adventures of Uncle Scrooge, his amazingly intelligent nephews: Huey, Dewey, and Louie, and Launchpad is being remembered with great admiration and fondness.

9| Flop Show

The only 'misdirected' show in the history of India. The series only had 10 episodes which seamlessly made fun around the life of the middle class Indian. Jaspal Bhatti's most remembered show till now.

10| Fauji

Fauji title screenshot
Fauji title screenshot

Shahrukh Khan shot to fame after this serial happened. Still being remembered by many people for the role of Abhimanyu Rai. Great emotions, acting, writing, and direction.

11| Hum Log

The first Indian TV soap opera. At the time of serial it became a huge hit and also went on to run for a long time. A total of 156 episodes were shown which was pretty historic even by international standards. Of course that time was different, but now that amount of episodes is a norm.

12| Karamchand

The extremely famous series couldn't entertain the audience much when it came up with a sequence in 2007 which aired on Sony. Whereas the role of Karamchand was portrayed by Pankaj Kapoor the role of Kitty was enacted by Sucheta Khanna.

13| Mahabharat

Now I have to re-say the same thing that many others including newspapers have said about this. Yes, the streets would go empty when it started. The song at the start is just awesome - sung by Mahendra Kapoor.

The grandeur, though, might not excite when it is compared to today's special effects but the serial got the whole nation excited.

Mahabharat Title Song

14| Mungerilal Ke Haseen Sapne

Raghubir Yadav, a common man who gets to hear bad from every other person. But Mungerilal has a viable way to get around this - by daydreaming.

15| Mowgli - The Jungle Book

As I was writing this my mom reminds me "You used to be mad about Mowgli".

And tell me who hasn't recited the famous lines: Jungle Jungle "Baat Chali Hai Pata Chala Hai.....Chaddi Pahenge Phool Khila Hai Phool Khila Hai".

The title song is composed by Vishal Bharadwaj lyrics by Gulzar and the singer is Amol Sahdev (Photo Link)

16| Malgudi Days

Remember Swami and Friends. Do you want to know where is that little child that played the character of Swami. Is he a famous actor now, or is he now a star in the South-Indian film industry.

No he quit acting and is now pursuing a career in Information Technology. Below is the link from where you can get more information about Swami.

My views on Malgudi days is that it is the greatest T.V series ever in the history of India.

A truly great story and is a must for every human being.

— TheGuardian.com on Malgudi Days

Malgudi Days - Episode 1 - Swamy And Friends

17| Nukkad

The mere mention of the name Nukkad brings forward the names such as Guru (Dilip Dhawan), Kadar Bhai (Avtaar Gill), Khopdi (Sameer Khakkar).

18| Potli Baba Ki Kahani

Fairy tales which had a relevant social message. The ever famous writer Gulzar penned this series and is now also available as a book which will be fun to read for kids

19| Padosan

A serial which is etched in my mind because of Jatin Kanakia who talked with the home furniture. Just a look of Jatin Kanakia fills my stomach with laughter. He was one of the few actors whose performance was liked by everyone, however, the industry didn't properly utilize his talents.

20| Ramayan

Bow your head down to take blessings of Lord Ram.


This 20 set DVD is available at all leading online stores. It is considered as the first mythological show of Indian television and directed by Ramanand Sagar. This will surely have a lasting effect on your mind, body, and soul. Buying the DVD set seems the only possible way to watch this as it has not yet been uploaded online.


21| Raja Aur Rancho

This was also fun to watch. The good news is that some episodes have been uploaded by Ultra Hindi on Youtube. The link below.

I hope so that all the episodes will soon be uploaded by them. No point in uploading half the episodes, isn't?

22| Space City Sigma

Heeri played by Savita Bhatia in Space City Sigma
Heeri played by Savita Bhatia in Space City Sigma | Source

India's first ever sci-fi series.

23| Shri Krishna

Hugely popular mythological serial on Lord Krishna.

24| Shrimaan Shrimati

My favorite comedy show of all time.

This one recently had a re-run on Sab TV at the afternoon slot. Shall I suggest Sab TV to re-start this one. If anyone from Sab is reading please re-run the show.

I believe the TRP's would be way better than the serials which are being telecasted. Also thanks to Sony for uploading all the episodes on Youtube.

Based on the concept of "love thy neighbor" but don't love your wife. Keshav has a liking for Prema (Dilruba's wife) and in turn Dilruba throws his heart on Koki (Keshav's wife).

Each episode is filled with humorous jokes and manages to entertain till the last minute. I have watched all the episodes and I recommend you should as well in your dinner time.

Jatin Kanakia was a gem.....R.I.P.

Poll on Shrimaan Shrimati

Who is your favorite character?

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Episode 99 : Prema Has a Fall

25| Shaktimaan

Mukesh Khanna will always be remembered for his iconic role of Shaktimaan
Mukesh Khanna will always be remembered for his iconic role of Shaktimaan

While Shaktimaan started when other T.V channels had forayed in the Indian Market. You might not like but I didn't had much fun watching it, might be because I had grown-up by the time this happened.

26| Surabhi

The hugely popular cultural show. Has the prized distinction of being the longest running cultural show as well featured its name in Limca Book of Records for getting more than 10 lakh letters in a single week.

27| Shanti - Ek Aurat Ki Kahani (Mandira Bedi : Then and Now)

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Mandira Bedi as Shanti Shanti is considered as the first daily soap of India televisionAfter Shanti she became a regular feature of TV with shows such as Aurat, Dushman, and more recently on 24 as Nikita RaiMandira became the center of attraction when she hosted 2003 ICC cricket world cup and India getting to the finals.She recently debut as a fashion designer at Lakme Fashion Week 2014 with her Saree collectionOn the cover page of Vogue magazineShe is married to producer director Raj KaushalWalking the ramp like a champYou can follow Mandy on Twitter via https://twitter.com/mandybedi her verified accountFor more pictures from her personal collection visit http://instagram.com/mandirabedi/
Mandira Bedi as Shanti
Mandira Bedi as Shanti
Shanti is considered as the first daily soap of India television
Shanti is considered as the first daily soap of India television | Source
After Shanti she became a regular feature of TV with shows such as Aurat, Dushman, and more recently on 24 as Nikita Rai
After Shanti she became a regular feature of TV with shows such as Aurat, Dushman, and more recently on 24 as Nikita Rai
Mandira became the center of attraction when she hosted 2003 ICC cricket world cup and India getting to the finals.
Mandira became the center of attraction when she hosted 2003 ICC cricket world cup and India getting to the finals.
She recently debut as a fashion designer at Lakme Fashion Week 2014 with her Saree collection
She recently debut as a fashion designer at Lakme Fashion Week 2014 with her Saree collection
On the cover page of Vogue magazine
On the cover page of Vogue magazine | Source
She is married to producer director Raj Kaushal
She is married to producer director Raj Kaushal | Source
Walking the ramp like a champ
Walking the ramp like a champ
You can follow Mandy on Twitter via https://twitter.com/mandybedi her verified account
You can follow Mandy on Twitter via https://twitter.com/mandybedi her verified account
For more pictures from her personal collection visit http://instagram.com/mandirabedi/
For more pictures from her personal collection visit http://instagram.com/mandirabedi/ | Source

Mandira Bedi made her debut in the industry with this dark reality based serial. She plays the character of Shanti the lead actor of an aspiring journalist.

And what boy see the stark differences of her looks now. She definitely looks much bolder and I must say she carries it well and suits her.

28| Tu Tu Main Main

Pun on Saas-Bahu relationship. Reema Lagoo and Supriya Pilgaonkar have some great fun irritating each other.

Where is all the love lost between the Saas-Bahu (I'm talking about the recent shows).

29| Tenali Rama

Again, a made for kids show which also become quite a hit when it aired.

30| Udaan

DVD back cover of Udaan
DVD back cover of Udaan

The story of a woman who beats all odds and hardships to become an IPS officer. So insightful, apt, and still relevant today.

Kavita Choudhary played the lead role which also had Shekhar Kapoor. This was recently released as a DVD by Reliance Entertainment which is available on Flipkart for Rs. 449.

31| Vikram Beetal

Brought to life stories that were written nearly 2500 years ago. The story of King Vikramaditya and Vetal. Each story was narrated by Beetal to the king which ended with a question that the king answered correctly.

32| Wagle Ki Duniya

Anjan Shrivastav's most remembered series of all time. An adaptation of R.K Laxman's famous Common Man which was a regular feature on Times of India.

33| Yeh Jo Hai Zindagi

Late Shafi Inamdar, Swaroop Sampat, Satish Shah alongwith Rakesh Bedi in this awesome comedy. A complete family entertainer.

34| Zabaan Sambhalke

The story of Mohan Bharti who is booted from his job as an engineer and to make ends meet teaches how to speak Hindi. However, he constantly gets frustrated by the lack of his students who don't even follow simple Hindi lessons.

Zabaan Sambhalke
Zabaan Sambhalke

Same goes for this you can watch this online from the below link or DVD set is available at all online stores for 1100 rs.


35| Zu Mountain Saga - (Surprise) aired on Home TV

Screenshot of Rocky with Yinglam from Zu Mountain Saga
Screenshot of Rocky with Yinglam from Zu Mountain Saga

This was one of my personal favorites while growing up. I'm sure you too are a fan of Rocky, Yinglam and do remember Aadamkhor, Kala Jadudar, Shaitaini Haath etc. Unfortunately, the CD/DVD is not released. I bet if it is released it would be bought hands-down.

Is this the inclusion justified?

Let us know in the comments section.

How and Where Can You Watch Them?

Doordarshan Logo
Doordarshan Logo | Source

So you skipped around and want to know where you can watch all these serials now. First of all I have included links for some shows above which have good quality videos, or at least are watchable. But not all of them are available and released online, and I will certainly not point you to illegal sites.

The best way to remember and refresh your old days by watching these serials is to buy CD/DVD's of them.

No don't throw stones at me for advocating to buy them. Trust me they will make a valuable collection. Needless to say if you are living in the United States then Amazon.com offers a large range of the above serials.

Other benefit of buying them is that you can watch them anytime without an internet connection and that too without compromising the quality. I said without an internet connection, now that's a valid point here, I know we all have situations where our internet connection doesn't work and the computer guy takes way too much time to fix it. These serials make a great watch that time.

Some Other Famous Ones : Names and Lead Actors

Serial Name
Serial Name
Air Hostess - Kitu Gidwani
Chamatkari Telephone
Chanakya - Chandraprakash Dwivedi
Captain Vyom - Milind Soman, Tom Alter
Chunauti - Suchitra Krishnamurthy
Gayab Aaya
Haddi Raja
Jai Hanuman - Raj Premi
Kahan Gaye Woh Log - Dheeraj Kumar
Katha Sagar - Sharmila Tagore, Shammi Kapoor, Om Puri, Utpal Dutt
Krishi Darshan
Luv Kush - Arun Govil, Swapnil Joshi
Mirza Ghalib - Naseerudin Shah
Masters of the Universe
Neem Ka Ped - Pankaj Kapoor
Rajani - Priya Tendulkar
Subah - Salim Ghouse
Superhit Muqabla
Swabhimaan - Kitu Gidwani
Talaash - Alok Nath, Moushumi Chatterjee
Tamas - Om Puri, Amrish Puri
Tehkikaat - Vijay Anand
The Stone Boy
The Sword of Tipu Sultan - Sanjay Khan

Not Just Shows Even The Ads Were Wonderful!!!

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Pan Pasand Classic Advert

Aamir, Mahima, and Aishwarya's Pepsi Ad

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Varun 3 months ago

I vaguely remember two programs , one is a talk show at early morning around 7 am. The name might resemble "good morning india" , please tell me , if its the correct name.

Also another serial afternoon, which had a title song of Jagjit Singh. Its not 'Neem Ka Ped'. Its another serial.

Could somebody help me find its names, please.

Mona 9 months ago

Good job.. is dvd for Trishna serial available or any link for the same.

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kannanwrites 11 months ago from Mumbai Author

@Deepankar Thanks for the help. Appreciated!!!

deepankar 11 months ago

ptlrav... its Phir wahi talaash

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kannanwrites 12 months ago from Mumbai Author

@ptlrav Can't remember. If any reader can help then it would be great!!!

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ptlrav 12 months ago

Do you know the serial name which used to come on sunday (i guess 12.30 pm),. it was drama serial, regarding 2 Muslims girls go to college, one poor guy from village also come to city for study, and somehow he lives in one girl's house as a pain guest. And i guess one of girl's father is Lawyer. I will appreciate if you let me know the name of that serial.

sbasu 18 months ago

There was another good serial, of course based on a classic novel, Mujrim Hazir. However neither the links are available anywhere, nor the DVD (which obviously preferred). Doesn't DoorDarshan market these, these could be good source of income for them !

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    Kannan Reddy (kannanwrites)227 Followers
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    Kannan just loves all things Bollywood. Being a Mumbaikar he has been all the while had a tremendous sense of liking about the Hindi cinema.

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