When Chaitali Dasgupta and Saswati Guhathakurta would sit in conversation the stories they would tell, be assured won’t be merely just stories. They are veritable stories themselves that needs to be told or perhaps re-told. And when they actually did sit in discussion with Sujoy Prosad Chatterjee during the second edition of ‘CONVERSATIONS at The Palms’, the expected was fulfilled ever more so.
Both ladies, both icons of their generation and in perpetuation had set exemplary standards of communication on Indian Television via Doordarshan rummaged through memory vaults and took us on a flight. They touched upon the everlasting chemistry between them, bonding over literature, fights over programming and such.
Deglamorizing her now legendary-Tv-presenter status, Chaitali would reminiscence, “We would travel in mini busses and autos to and fro from office, life was that simple. The fact that we belonged to an era where we were the first and we were present at everyone’s home each day through television made us a part of the lives of all those people who would watch television.”
Saswati recalled an anecdote “There was this one time when we had travelled to the hills, I was walking down the road with my children when I saw this elderly couple coming towards me with outstretched hands, trying to figure out who they were, I later realised as they came up to me to speak that they felt a level of familiarity with me since they saw me on television each day. Interestingly, the gentleman, who was quite older to me, went on to add that he had been seeing me ever since he was a kid on television.”
Both guests spoke about how presenting on television or any other podium has drastically changed over the years, the legendary duo went on to admit that the new generation of television anchors are much more smart and technically sound adding that a little bit of research will take them even further.
They made us privy to their private life as well – disappearance of Chaitali’s father, Saswati’s separation from marriage to starting off with unique initiatives to build their career and finances, as well as their association with Doordarshan and the transition from black and white television to colour.
Nostalgia brimmed over those who were present including Designer Sharbari Datta, Singer Shreya Guhathakurta, Film director Raja Dasgupta, Dr Mousumi Ghosh, Founder Director Future Media School, designer Indroneel Mukherjee, RJ Roy, Nandita Raja of Kanishka’s and Fashion expert Jeena Mitra Banik.
By the time evening gave out it’s yawn, the third session had already become the preoccupation of mutter.