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Folklore is considered to be the expressions of traditional beliefs, practices, customs, and art. They are associated with the sentiments of people , for they make us revisit mindsets specific to particular geaographical regions and time. Theodore H. Gaster in the journal of folklore research says that the distinctiveness of folklore lies in the fact that “it is essentially of the people, for the people and by the people.” India is known for its diverse traditions and it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that folklores have carved a unique niche for India in the global world. Folklores constitute fables, folk tales, fairy tales, folk dances, proverbs, folk art and myths, making one peep into human minds and diverse patterns of thinking, enriching and thus deepening the levels of our perceptions. Mythological folklore are usually based on history. Indian mythological is intensively vast. The Mahabharata, one of the two Indian epics, is based on the story of paternal cousins, namely the Pandavas and the Kauravas – having descended from a common lineage, who fight for the throne of Hastinapura at Kurushetra. What makes it timeless are the discourses of Krishna given to Arjuna, in the middle of the battlefield, to which people can connect even after the passage of thousands of years. Those who were deeply moved by this eternal wisdom then rightly felt the need to document it and preserve it for the generations to come. And Information Technology was like a magic password to go about it with a systematic approach. Information technology has wrought fundamental changes throughout society, offering the preservation of folklores and an opportunity to transcend originals, disseminating the information to a much larger audience. The Government has been extensively promoting the Digital Literacy Drive and various steps have been taken by the government through its various ancillary bodies to promote digitalization of manuscripts. Digitization of the Mahabharata has lent a voice to the masses, allowing the prevailing information to be rewritten, reconstructed, decoded and expanded as per their individual logical bandwidth. The impact of individual expressions of the Mahabharata that have found space through social media in its various forums like Email, Facebook, Instagram etc. will be investigated. Identification of the role of modern digital multimodal texts and online platforms that have given opportunities to understand the past and move ahead, with a deeper understanding. The youth today connect with memes and reels of Instagram that provide a unique snapshot into the cultural events of a moment in time. Therefore this paper is an attempt to demonstrate the validity of the mythological epic Mahabharata with an analysis how internet could be a compatible duo and how internet potency of folklores acts as a folkloric conduit. With an further discussion on the assessment of digitization of the Indian epic Mahabharata.
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Folklore, Digitalization, Culture, Mahabharata, Internet, Social media