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Baghch-e-Simsim logos
Zari 03

A locally-produced live action film from the show.

Zari from afghanistan w katie couric

Zari, with Katie Couric.

Baghch-e-Simsim (Sesame Garden) is the Afghan co-production of Sesame Street, produced by Sesame Workshop in conjunction with Afghan television station Tolo.

The program features dubbed segments from Play with Me Sesame, Sesame Street, and Global Grover, as well as segments and Muppets from the international co-productions in Egypt (Khokha from Alam Simsim), Bangladesh (Tuktuki from Sisimpur), Mexico (Lola from Plaza Sésamo) and Russia (Businka from Ulitsa Sezam). These segments are dubbed into both Dari (for airing on Tolo) and Pashto (for airing on Lemar).

Each episode also includes locally-produced live action films featuring children from around Afghanistan. The first episode debuted on the Tolo and Lemar TV stations on December 1, 2011.

The first ever Afghan Muppet was introduced for the fifth season in April 2016. Zari is described as "an eager six-year-old girl" who will appear in three of the new, locally-produced segments for the series, "speaking directly to viewers, interacting with children in person, and interviewing a variety of Afghan professionals." The season consist of 26 episodes at 25 minutes each.[1]


Tania Farzana, the Afghan-American producer of Baghch-e-Simsim, mentioned some changes that had to be made to comport with Afghanistan's conservative society:[2]

  • A scene with Bert and Ernie barking like dogs was cut due to the low status of canines in Afghanistan, and the widespread use of "dog" as an insult.
  • Due to a taboo on dancing in mixed company, children are encouraged to exercise to music, instead of dancing.

External links


  1. "Sesame’s world grows with first female Afghan Muppet" by Patrick Callan, April 7, 2016
  2. Yahoo "Sesame Street comes to Afghanistan" AFP, Dec 1, 2011

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