Saif Ali Khan plays a lead role in web series ‘Tandav’. (File photo)
Saif Ali Khan plays a lead role in web series ‘Tandav’. (File photo)

Fresh case filed in Greater Noida against makers of web series ‘Tandav’

A BSP member filed the case for showing the UP Police in a bad light and hurting religious sentiments and social beliefs
By Shafaque Alam
PUBLISHED ON JAN 19, 2021 01:11 PM IST

A Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) member has filed a fresh case against the makers and actors of the web series ‘Tandav’ and Amazon Prime Video streaming platform for showing the Uttar Pradesh police in a bad light and hurting religious sentiments and social beliefs.

The case was registered in Greater Noida near Delhi even as the makers issued an unconditional apology on Monday, saying they did not intend to offend sentiments of any caste, community, or religion. The statement came amid criticism from political leaders including those from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) against the web series streamed on Amazon Prime Video for allegedly depicting Hindu gods in a bad light.

The Union information and broadcasting ministry has also cited “a large number of grievances and petitions” on “various facets of the web series”.

Also read | After ‘Tandav’, FIR against ‘Mirzapur’ for ‘hurting sentiments, abusive content’

Balbeer Azad, the complainant in the Greater Noida case, said the depiction of men in Uttar Pradesh police uniform using abusive language and drinking in their van prompted him to lodge the case. “They have made derogatory comments against lower caste people which is not good for our society. The web series has also depicted Hindu deities in a bad light with an ill intention,” he said.” He added the depiction of the Prime Minister in the web series also amounts to an “attack on the democratic system”.

Azad, who said a part of the web series was shot in his native Rabupura area of Greater Noida, has named the series director Ali Abbas Zafar; Aparna Purohit, the head of Amazon’s India original content; writers Himanshu Krishna Mehra and Gaurav Solanki; and actors Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia and Sunil Grover in his complaint.

Additional deputy police commissioner Vishal Pandey said they have registered the case against seven people named in Azad’s complaint under Indian Penal Sections 153-A(1)(b) (promoting enmity), 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings), Section 505 (1)(b) (intent to cause, or which is likely to cause fear or alarm), and under the Information Technology Act. “We have registered a case and investigating the matter. Actions will be taken as per the evidence,” he said.

On Sunday, police in Lucknow registered a first information report against Purohit, Abbas, and Mehra, among others, on charges of promoting enmity between different groups and insulting religion.

Madhya Pradesh home minister Narottam Mishra has threatened legal action against the makers and Maharashtra BJP lawmaker Ram Kadam has called for a boycott of the series.

There was no immediate response from the makers or the Amazon Prime Video to the fresh case registered against them.

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