The most popular telenovela filmed in India is the Brazilian-produced "Caminho das Indias," translated into English as "The Road to India." It is also known as "India - A Love Story" or simply "India." It incorporates Bollywood music and themes into a highly successful telenovela format.
Filmed in India as well as Dubai and Brazil, the majority of the language spoken in "India" is Portuguese, with many common Hindi phrases peppered into the dialogue. These phrases include "Arrey Baba," which means "oh, my goodness," and "Bhagwan Ke Liye," which translates as "for God's sake." Additional Hindi words or phrases in the telenovela include words for "let's go" and "okay," which are "chalo" and "acha," respectively.
"Caminho das Indias" takes place mostly in a contemporary setting, with flashbacks to the coming of democracy to India in the 1950s, and some scenes from the 1970s. It tells the story of a young woman from the trader caste who falls in love with a "dalit," or "untouchable" who is studying in the United States. Other themes include tradition versus modern values, and sanity versus insanity.
Some Indian scholars have been critical of the production, claiming it perpetuates stereotypes and has the feel of a Bollywood production, free of any historical or political reality. Despite scholarly criticism, the telenovela was highly successful in Brazil and is proving to be popular in the United States.