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Dehra kids to light up the small screen

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VETERAN: Writer Ruskin Bond
VETERAN: Writer Ruskin Bond

P. Anima

NEW DELHI: Children will now get a chance not only to read their favourite Ruskin Bond stories, but also to watch them. "Dehra Kids'', a series to be telecast on Doordarshan beginning this Sunday, will bring alive the stories of one of India's best-loved children's authors. SaaReeGaa Productions' "Dehra Kids'' will be telecast on DD-Bharati every Sunday at 8-30 p.m.

Humour, adventure and an element of the supernatural -- the hallmark of Bond's stories -- will make Dehra Kids a fun experience for children. The episodes are loosely based on some of Bond's best known stories like "Ranji's Wonderful Bat'', "The Black Cat'', "The Great Train Journey'', "When the Guavas are Ripe'', "Mukesh Starts A Zoo'', "Eyes of the Cat'' and the classic "Dust on the Mountain''.

The 10-part series directed by Ajay Shetty will remain faithful to the spirit of Bond stories but the episodes have been adapted to fit into the half-hour format. The stories have been adapted for television by Anasuya Vaidya.

The "Dehra Kids'' are a group of children living in a small hill town and has some of Bond's enduring fictional characters. The cricket-crazy Ranji, the know-all Koki, the animal lover Mukesh, the mischievous Teju, and Chashmu who observes everything around him make up the Dehra kids.

The characters will be brought to life by child artistes Nisa Shetty, Mohit Arora, Govind Marodia, Dhruv Shetty, Sarthak Ghonkrokta, Bhavya Mahajan, Nishant Gambhir and Yashna. And the surprise package will be Ruskin Bond himself who will make an appearance at the beginning and end of each episode. The stories are set in Manali and its surroundings.

The series will begin with "Billi Aur Broomstick'', the story of a struggling writer who buys an old broom that in turn unleashes a series of mysterious happenings.

Theatre personality Jalabala Vaidya will be appearing in a cameo in this episode.

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