scorecardLuminary’s Barefoot Boys’ Free Stream during the Republic Day weekend: Hosted by Konkana Sen Sharma
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Luminary’s Barefoot Boys’ Free Stream during the Republic Day weekend: Hosted by Konkana Sen Sharma

Luminary’s Barefoot Boys’ Free Stream during the Republic Day weekend: Hosted by Konkana Sen Sharma
Business2 min read
January 26, 2023 marks the 74th anniversary of India adopting the status of a sovereign, democratic and republican state. So, it is only fitting we look back on stories of people who helped the country gain freedom.

Enter Barefoot Boys, a podcast hosted by Konkona Sen Sharma on Luminary, a subscription podcast network with an award-winning lineup of original shows. Luminary’s Barefoot Boys is an attempt to bring out stories from India, and this story, in particular, deserves to be lauded.

An unconventional battlefield
Barefoot Boys is a lesser-known story from the early 1900s when the love for football was brewing in British Calcutta. It is the story of eleven boys from Bengal who joined the Indian independence movement by fighting their enemy on the most unconventional battlefield—the football ground.

In this podcast series, Konkana Sen Sharma, the celebrated Indian actress, writer, and director with a wide repertoire of Hindi and Bengali films, traces the journey of how these boys pulled-off this unimaginable feat.

Defeating the Coloniser
India, then still under British rule, was far from receiving independence. Plus, football was a new sport for Indians. In contrast, the British team was well funded, better trained, experienced and significantly, had football shoes. But this didn’t deter the eleven boys from playing against their colonisers, and displaying a level of courage and spirit a few could.

While Calcutta was reeling under the news that their ‘capital’ status would be lost to Delhi in 1911, there was news that made waves, locally in Calcutta, across the subcontinent, and reaching the farthest reaches of the Empire: The Barefoot Boys from Calcutta, had defeated the British team in soccer.

Brazil of the East
Soon, the country earned the moniker ‘Brazil of the East’. Indian football had started to come of age. Beating the British at their own game, the eleven barefoot boys came to be fondly known as Amor Ekadosh, or “Immortal Eleven” for having made their country win at one of the oldest football tournaments in the world, all without boots on their feet!

However, football was not considered an Indian sport; with most Indians having grown up playing Gulli-danda and other regional games. How, then, did Indians who had learnt to play football only thirty years before, go on to defeat the very country which was ruling over them?

A Luminary Original
To commemorate the 74th Republic Day and shed light on this lesser known chapter from India's freedom struggle, Luminary will be opening up the podcast for free streaming through the Republic Day weekend (26th January, 2023 - 29th January, 2023). Listeners who want to live the tale through Konkana’s beautiful storytelling will get access to all the ten episodes released until that week.

Konkana, who has received two National Film Awards and four Filmfare Awards, and has built a unique brand for herself, does a stellar job bringing forth this exceptional story.

Listen to Sen talk about the majestic Amor Ekadosh, India’s fight for independence, and the interplay of politics and sport, only on Luminary.
Disclaimer: Luminary has partnered with Times Bridge to scale and expand its reach in India. Business Insider is a part of Times Bridge, a company of Times Internet Limited.

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