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A peek into India’s comics past

Indian comics have a long and fascinating history, dating back to the early 20th century. While the medium has evolved and changed over the years, Indian comics continue to captivate readers with their unique blend of humor, adventure, and social commentary.

The first Indian comics were published in the early 1900s, in the form of illustrated children’s books. These books, which were often adaptations of popular folk tales and legends, were highly popular and helped to establish a tradition of Indian storytelling.

In the 1960s and 1970s, Indian comics underwent a major transformation, with the introduction of superheroes and other action-oriented characters. Some of the most popular titles from this period include Amar Chitra Katha, a series of comics based on Indian mythology, and Tinkle, a children’s comic magazine that featured characters like Suppandi and Shikari Shambu.

During this time, Indian comics also began to address social and political issues, with titles like Surya and Nagayana exploring themes like corruption, terrorism, and environmental degradation.

In the 1980s and 1990s, Indian comics continued to evolve, with the introduction of more mature and experimental titles. One of the most notable examples from this period is the graphic novel Corridor by Sarnath Banerjee, which explored the lives of young urban Indians and their struggles with identity and modernity.

Today, Indian comics continue to thrive, with a diverse range of titles catering to different audiences and interests. Some of the most popular titles include Raj Comics’ Nagraj and Diamond Comics’ Chacha Chaudhary, both of which have been adapted into television shows and movies.

While Indian comics may not have the same global recognition as their American or Japanese counterparts, they remain an important and vibrant part of Indian culture. Through their storytelling and art, Indian comics have helped to shape the country’s cultural identity and continue to inspire generations of readers and creators.

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