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|Created by||Mukesh Khanna|
|Written by||Ghalib Asad Bhopali and Brij Mohan Pandey|
|Directed by||Dinkar Jani|
|Country of origin||India|
|No. of episodes||
Around 300 (Initial Run)Around 400 (Extension in reruns)
|Editor(s)||Nasir Hakim Ansari|
|Running time||60 Minutes|
|Original run||September 14, 1997 – 27 March 2005 |
Shaktimaan (Hindi: शक्तिमान), is a fictional Indian superhero from the television series of the same name produced by Mukesh Khanna and directed by Dinkar Jani. Around 400 episode series originally aired on Doordarshan, India's national television network, from September 27, 1997 (barring the introductory episode on September 20, 1997) to March 27, 2005, on Sundays at 12 noon IST. The telecast slot, however was shifted to 9:30 a.m. in last episodes. It has also aired on Pogo in English, Chutti TV in Tamil and repeated its Hindi telecast on STAR Utsav. Mukesh Khanna plays the role of Shaktimaan and his alter-ego Pandit Gangadhar Vidyadhar Mayadhar Omkarnath Shastri, a photographer for the newspaper Aaj Ki Aawaz. Shaktimaan has super strength, the ability to fly, and is invulnerable to things that cause injuries on the body. Geeta Vishwas is also a reporter in the series who loves Shaktimaan.
Shaktimaan is another common human being, and not any incarnation, but has got his internal spiritual powers ignited with the continuous and typical practice of Hindu philosophical and cultural values system and activities like Yog Sadhna and Meditation. Also he follows the morals and ethical values of truth, non-violence, and values stated in books like the Bhagavad Gita. Shaktimaan is rebirth of Shri Satya, first guru of Suryanshis after the death of Guru Sarvagya and division of Shaktipunja into two pieces namely Shakti Punja (remained with Truth/Light) and Pap Punja (taken away by Andhera/Darkness).
Origin of Shaktimaan
Shaktimaan received powers from seven gurus who trained and blessed him with "yogic shakti which was natural power.". He was the chosen warrior against evil by siddha gurus of a cult named Suryavanshi. They are followers of the star Sun. As part of training he trained with Kundalini Yoga to waken the 7 chakras of body and gain 'super natural' powers from them. To gain complete control over his powers he performed the ritual of death. However, this did not cause death but made him more alive than when he was a normal man. He also performed Yajna in which he entered the fire himself and dissolved his body in fire. Then, the five elements of life, i.e. fire, wind, water, earth, sky revived his body giving him special powers from them. Thus after leaving his mortal body he was given a super human form to fight against the evil in the world as Shaktimaan.
After Shaktimaan was created he set out to destroy his archenemy Kilvish. But, as the Mahaguru (Tom Alter) explained, Kilvish can only be defeated after evil is destroyed. Shaktimaan's mission is to destroy the sin within people, not the sinned people. Shaktimaan's adventures show him pursuing justice and saving his friends while Kilvish and his minions plot to defeat him.
Powers of Shaktimaan
Shaktimaan has superhuman powers which lie inside his body in his seven chakras of Kundalini attained through meditation. Shaktimaan worships God through the symbol Om. Truthfulness is his motto. He can even separate his body into five different bodies of fire, wind, water, earth and sky. He is an expert, skilled and intelligent fighter and has fought with super-skilled enemies. He possesses all kinds of physical powers like unlimited speed, strength, durability as well as psychic powers like telepathy, teleportation, telekinesis etc. In short he is all powerful.
His only weakness is a crystal possessed by Tamraj Kilvish. This makes him powerless because it is filled with the evil of the world and is the source of the black powers. He can even be killed if the crystal is placed in front of him and he is treated violently to the verge of death. However, its effects are temporary and he regains his strength after the crystal is taken away from him.
To avoid being an easy prey of Tamraj Kilvish, Shaktimaan adopted a different identity as Pandit Gangadhar Vidyadhar Mayadhar Omkarnath Shastri in the society. The character Gangadhar is completely opposite to that of Shaktimaan in all aspects e.g. appearance, intelligence while he speaks pure Hindi. Staying in the society as a common person helped him to get knowledge about crime. He got a job of a photographer for the newspaper Aaz Ki Awaaz after being interviewed by Geeta Vishwas. After a few weeks, he became a co-reporter working with Geeta. Through a series of incidents and the fact that he could never capture a photo of Shaktimaan, Geeta came to know about the dual identity of Shaktimaan, which was previously known only to Suryanshis. After Aaz Ki Awaaz was shut down, Gangadhar became a Hindi professor at a junior college. Later, he left the college in order to work for a news channel KR TV with Geeta.
- Geeta Vishwas
Geeta Vishwas (Vaishnavi Mahant), the female lead in the serial, used to work as a brave news reporter in Aaz Ki Awaaz. She was the first to report about Shaktimaan in newspaper and named the superhero as Shaktimaan. Incidentally, she was the only reporter to get interviews of Shaktimaan as Gangadhar used to accompany her as photographer in missions. She died in a crash at space planned by Dr. Jaikal. As Shaktimaan loved her, he brought her back to life again using his power which resulted in losing his powers temporally due to his against the nature actions. Geeta came to know about this after Shaktimaan regained power with the vow that he will never repeat the same mistake again. To ensure this, she planned to leave the country. In the lead up to that situation, she got to know about Shaktimaan's dual character for the third time. But unlike first two occasions, Shaktimaan didn't erase it from Geeta's memory this time as she promised to keep it secret forever.
One year later‡, after Aaz Ki Awaaz was shut down, its staff members persuaded Geeta in returning to India to join them to release Shaktimaan comics. Later she teamed up with Gangadhar again and joined KR TV as a television reporter while working for the comics simultaneously.
‡ - When the journalist character Geeta Vishwas was written out of the series, fan protests prompted the producers to bring her back.
- Tamraj Kilvish
Tamraj Kilvish is Shaktimaan’s archenemy. Tamraj means King of Darkness (tama = darkness, raj = king). He has lived 6000 years, and is the source of evil in the world. He intends to rule the world by spreading darkness, hatred, sin and evil. It is said that the source of his strength is one-half of the "Shakti Punj" (the half which is referred to as "Paap Punj") which he managed to retain after he originally obtained the entire Shakti Punj by deceit from Shri Satya (Satya means truth), the founder of the Suryavanshi. However, it is also mentioned that the source of his strength is the evil that is committed by people in this world.
It was later revealed that only Shri Satya can kill Tamraj Kilvish. After a death defying adventure, Shaktimaan was told that he is the rebirth of Shri Satya. Shri Satya had given the exact time of the child's birth and the place before he died about 6000 years ago. Tamraj also knows this and this is the main reason he is frightened by the appearance of Shaktimaan as he knows that only Shaktimaan can kill Tamraj. He murdered Shaktimaan's parents and his adoptive father, Pandit Vidyadhar Shastri. He and his minions plot to kill him but always fail. His minions include Electric-man (who can shoot lightning blots from his body), Stone-man (who can shoot stones from his body), Plastica (who can stretch any part of her body), Dr. Jackal (an evil scientist) and others. Dr. Jackal has helped Kilvish in his various schemes by cloning Shaktimaan and also by turning aliens against him.
In the television series, Kilvish is often treated as the personification of darkness itself even though he was once a human being who later becomes very powerful and commits many evil deeds. In an attempt to become immortal, he left his mortal body and took an ethereal body which can't be killed but Shaktimaan is told that he has to kill all the evil in the world to destroy Tamraj’s ethereal body. Kilvish's trademark quote is "Andhera Kaayam Rahe" (May Darkness Prevail), which is also used by his followers.
Kilvish's character evolves as the series progresses. In the beginning episodes of Shaktimaan, his face is never shown and his voice is different from the voice that he uses in the later episodes of Shaktimaan, in which his role is played by Surendra Pal. Later his face deforms to become a distorted wolf like face.
- Dr. Jaikal
Dr. Jaikal is an evil scientist who works for Kilvish. His earlier intention was not that of becoming evil, but when he was denied scholarship for research, Kilvish provided him with funds and labs, thus making him a supporter of Kilvish & an evil scientist. Though he is overall a brilliant scientist, his specialization is cloning and various energy rays. His creations against Shaktimaan include Kekda Man (a clone formed by fusing cells of Crab & human), followed by Jonk Jonkaa (a clone using leech), an evil clone of Shaktimaan, Plastica, Lightman, 3D image, Super-heroine Sunanda and others. He also invented a height control solution and fictional EC- rays. 
Sahab is an organized criminal and drug lord. Like Shaktimaan he also possesses double identity, the other being that of a law abiding industrialist and Mayor, known as Kumar Ranjan. Except for Tamraj Kilvish (and later Dr. Jackal), no one knows that Sahab and Kumar Ranjan are the same person, thus making this his biggest strength. Through his criminal mind, Sahab keeps plotting ways to create trouble for Shaktimaan or to defame him and to find out about the real identity of Shaktimaan.
Shalaka is a cat girl who has pledged to eliminate Shaktimaan. She first appears in episode 125 of the series in which she tries to harm Geeta. She is an accomplice of Tamraj Kilvish. She has a sister named Shalya. When she sees the cat Mani caressing Shaktimaan, she hurls it to death. She later realises that the cat was her sister, Shalya.
He has metal plate attached to his chest and can send rays of darkness with electric current through it. He often passes jokes while fighting Shaktimaan. He has a trident and is portrayed like a tantrik. Shaktimaan turned him into pieces of stones in an episode. Later in the late episodes of Shaktimaan, he is shown resurrected back to life. He is played by Faqira.
She was another devil magician sent by Tamraaj to kill Shaktimaan in childhood but she failed. Tamraaj tortured her in fire for several years for this. Later he again give her a chance to kill Shaktimaan with a warning but Teemiraa was planning to kill both Shaktimaan and Tamraaj Kilvish. Whenever she drinks blood of any human body she becomes young. At last Kilvish kills her for her misbehaves.
She was a devil creature works for Kilvish, she hitches somebody on road and kills him brutally by taking his spirit. She wants to become powerful, so she goes in front of Kilvish for her request. Kilvish tells her to Kill Shaktimaan and she will become what she want. Her looks was mostly similar to Teemiraa, she wears red dress and also the background score of Teemiraa was played on her.
Toyman's character was played by Brij Mohan Pandey. He is mentally a psycho lover who kills his fiance Shailaa. In order to make more profit, he made toys using low-priced colors which are harmful to children causing death to many children and he was jailed. Later he created dangerous toys as weapons to destroy Shaktimaan.
She is a devil woman runs her black world as an agent of Tamraj Kilvish. She is so cruel that she kills her own servants who can't do her given work. She made the jungle of Karadunga, her penthouse, a mysterious place so that no one can come there. Once, she attacked Shaktimaan's father Ranjeet Singh when he tried to investigate the secrets of Karadunga. Later, Shaktimaan ruins her world leaves her no way but to flee.
- Evil Lover Maharaniji
Her role was done by actress Sunila Karambekar as a villain. She enters when Shaktimaan, Dwijj, Geeta time travel upon centuries to collect chakra, but they were unable as Maharani makes them her hostages. She thought the Shaktimaan as Satya, the Mahaguru, who was once a king but later became a priest as he loves the environment of forest. His fighting skills make maharani fell in love with him and she proposes Satya, but he rejects her. It makes her angry and so psycho that she creates her own world where she rules like queen. She also has many magical powers that nobody can destroy her. Later after telling the story to Shaktimaan, she also told him that she is immortal and nobody can kill her. Shaktimaan wants the time machine remote from Maharaniji which she stole from him while kidnapping Geeta and Dwijj to unknown place. Shaktimaan requests Maharaniji to return the remote and free both hostages. For her love she shows both Geeta and Dwijj. Later Maharaniji attacked Geeta by her magical dangerous rays so cruelly that she can be dead. What happened then is shown in the remaining episode.
During archaeology a tomb has been found buried. Kashtak comes out of it and want to rule the whole world. Later Shaktimaan defeats him.
She (Sunila) was also a demonic evil woman sent by Kilvish with her mates Kakodar (J.J) and Mathur (Deepak Bhatia). She can transform her body or face like a Shape shifter. She kills a C.B.I. officer and takes her face to interrogate Gangadhar and Geeta. Later her powers were ended due to Shaktimaan defeating Kakodar. To regain power, she kidnaps the son of a scientist with her mates in order to get the formula of invisible man which may help defeating Shaktimaan.
She can change her face and body through her body like Chameleon (Spiderman's villain). Once, she changes her face to Shaktimaan's and creates a fake fight to destroy the status of Shaktimaan. Later she again changes her face to Geeta Vishwaas and give a wrong interview on television about Shaktimaan. But Shaktimaan shows her real face to everyone later. Jaikaal punishes her angrily for her failure and gives her death.
She was a mutant like Akansha. She can touch any electrical wave and make her powers. Her neighbors want to kill her as they think that she is a witch. She was saved by Suryanshi samuday who want to help her. But she was kidnapped by Dr. Jaikaal. He offers her to make more powerful than Shaktimaan to revenge the society. He converts her to a superwoman and uses her to destroy Shaktimaan's status with another devil woman Behroopia. Later Sunanda changes heart and surrenders after seeing the reality of Kilvish and Jaikaal.
- Jwaala and Euroo
They are aliens from Sudoko planet.They landed on earth to save there lives from the three evil aliens who wants to destroy everything. Later Dr. Jaikal kidnaps them, to use their powers for darkness (andhera).
Nupur Alankaar plays the small role of Kaamini as a filmy gossip writer in Shaktimaan. She is attracted towards Gangadhar,talking very lovely to him which makes Geeta jealous
She loves Toyman as a friend. But Toyman loves her like a lover. After using poisonous colours in toys many children die. As a result Toyman is sent to jail. Shailaa begins hates him and never wants to see his ugly face again. She is later married to a new man. When Toyman discovers this, he finds her and kills her along with her whole family.
461 episodes in first season
- SuperHero Is Pandit Gangadhar
- Gangadhar Encounters Geeta Vishwas
- Super Hero Named as Shaktimaan
- Making of Electricman
- Gangadhar Interviewd by Geeta
- Gangadhar Teams up With Geeta
- Shaktimaan Destroys Electricman
- Enters Kapala
- Shaktimaan Fights Kapala
- Kapala wants to Capture Geeta
- Shaktimaan(Gangadhar) Finds House To Live
- Kapala Runs Away
- Kilvish The Of Darkness Calling
- Shaktimaan Plays Aankhmaicholi With His Friends
- Appu In Trouble
- King Of Darkness Addresses His Subject
- Shaktimaan Saves Appu
- Enters Queen Of Jalkur Nsgri(An Under Water Kingdom)
- Acid Attack From Jalkur Nagri(An Under Water Kingdom)
- Shaktimaan Enters Jalkur Nagri(An Under Water Kingdom)
- Johaharu Defames Shaktimaan
- Shaktimaan The Problem Of Jalkur Nagri
- Mayor J.J(Kakodar)Wants To Buy Aaj Ki Awaaz
- Appu Wants Shaktimaan Doll
- Kapala Creates Stoneman
- Shaktimaan Defeats Stoneman
- Shaktimaan Saves Earth
- J.J Wants To Know The Secret Of Shaktimaan
- C.B.I Raids Aaj Ki Awaaz
- Shaktimaan Saves Geeta
- Shalu and Hatheli Kidnaps Gangadhar
- Girgit Kidnaps Geeta
- Shalu Dupes Sethji
- Mukesh Khanna as Shaktimaan/Pandit Gangadhar Vidyadhar Mayadhar Omkaar Naath Shastri/Major Ranjeet Singh/Sree Satya/evil clown shaktimaan(Male lead)
- Vaishnavi Mahant‡ as Geeta Vishwas, Female lead
- Surendra Pal as Tamraj Kilvish
- Tom Alter as Mahaguru
- Rajendra Gupta as Geeta's Father
- Lalit Parimoo as Dr. Jaikal
- Raman Khatri as Sahab/Kumar Ranjan
- Nawab Shah as Mayor JJ (Jai Kumar Janardhan)/Kakodar
- Deepshikha as Paroma/Sheraali (dual roles)
- Sunila Karambekar as evil Maharaaniji
- Brij Mohan Pandey as Bankelal/Toyman
- Nupur Alankaar as Kaamini (Film gossip writer at Aaz Ki Awaaz)
- Shikha Swaroop as villain alien (special appearance)
- Goga Kapoor as Bilas Rao
- Deep Raj Rana as Inspector Jai Singh, a Corrupt Police officer.
- Sharad Smart as Satyaprakash Nirala, the 1st editor of Aaz Ki Awaaz
- Raju Shrivastav as Durandhar Singh, the 2nd editor of Aaz Ki Awaaz and a media person who hates Shaktimaan
- Urvashi Dholakia as Maansi Sharma
- Kavita Kaushik as Teemira/Behroopia
- Manjeet Kullar as Kaushalya (Ranjeet Singh's wife)
- Sneha Rao
- Tarika Khanna
When Shaktimaan first aired on Doordarshan, there were a lot of controversy created as children set themselves on fire or jumped off buildings hoping that Shaktimaan would save them. In an effort to promote responsible behavior among children, Mukesh Khanna spent a substantial part of the airtime in explaining to the children that the stunts shown on television were not real and should not be emulated. Khanna also stated that most of the controversies were fake and were raised in media to undermine its popularity.
Shaktimaan was one of the most popular and longest-running television series for Indian children on the Doordarshan channel. In an interview with Nupur Rekhi of indiantelevision.com, Khanna told that, he has even received letters from the external affairs minister and then Prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee saying that he has done a very good thing in choosing the role of Shaktimaan and keeping up to it. He has been featured in The Wall Street Journal on the front page reflecting on Shaktimaan's (and hence Khanna's) positive influence on children.
Later a series of comic books appeared featuring Shaktimaan and published in many Indian languages as well as English in association with Diamond Comics and Raj Comics. Shaktimaan merchandise like costumes, stickers, dolls, etc. were also introduced in market.
In the wake of the 2001 Gujarat Earthquake, Mukesh Khanna toured the affected areas in character as Shaktimaan topping morale and giving relief to people.
Shaktimaan: The Animated Series produced by Reliance Animation will be aired on Sonic, a new channel by Viacom 18 in India. A 3D film featuring Shaktimaan was announced on 24 March 2012. Mukesh Khanna who played the role of Shaktimaan confirmed this. It started airing on Nickelodeon India from 7 May.
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