Cut scenes from Tandav, but problems continue with more complaints

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At least two scenes have been removed from the controversial web series Tandav, which found itself in trouble on Wednesday with new FIRs against its creators and broadcast in Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.

In a ray of hope, the Bombay High Court granted bail before arrest in transit to director Ali Abbas Zafar, Amazon Prime India director Aparna Purohit, producer Himanshu Mehra and series writer Gaurav Solanki. The remedy was granted for three weeks to enable them to apply to the relevant court in Lucknow, where an FIR was registered against them for allegedly hurting religious feelings.

A scene from a play and a conversation between two key characters was taken from the show’s first episode, Tanashah, a day after the cast and crew of the nine-part star-studded political saga on Amazon Prime Video got together. apologize again and stated that they have decided to implement changes to address the concerns raised.

At the center of the row over the show, which grabbed national headlines with boycott calls, FIRs and protests against its alleged portrayal of Hindu deities, was a scene with Zeeshan Ayyub as the student Shiva playing the Hindu god Mahadeva (another name for Lord Shiva) in a play. A conversation between Lord Shiva and Narad Muni in the theatrical production made one cringe.

This scene has disappeared. Viewers now see Zeeshan entering the stage as Mahadev amidst cheers from the audience and the stage then abruptly shifts to the police entering the campus to arrest a student.

Also missing was a conversation describing the character of Prime Minister Devki Nandan Singh, played by Tigmanshu Dhulia, insulting Dalit leader Kailash Kumar, played by Anup Soni. There have also been other changes to the series. A caste-referencing dialogue between Soni’s character and Sandhya’s Sandhya Mridul has been shortened.

Despite the cuts, the show, directed by Ali Abbas Zafar and starring Bollywood stars Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia and Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub, sank into more trouble.

Mumbai Police have registered an FIR against the creators and actors based on a complaint filed by BJP MP Ram Kadam. He named the cast, including Saif and Zeeshan, as well as Amazon director, producer, screenwriter, Purohit and Amazon India chief Amit Agarwal, an official said.

“BJP Ghatkopar MP Ram Kadam previously filed a written complaint against the web series, alleging that it hurt the religious feelings of Hindus. He also took a morcha at Amazon’s head office in BKC,” said the head of the police.

Earlier today, Maharashtra’s Interior Minister Anil Deshmukh said state police had received a complaint and formal action would be taken according to the law.

He also demanded a Center law to regulate content on over-the-top (OTT) platforms to ensure there is no caste discrimination or community division.

A team of four members of the Uttar Pradesh Police Department, where three FIRs were dropped off, arrived in Mumbai in the morning to investigate the Lucknow case.

The team is likely to record the statements of the directors, cast and crew of the series. While some members visited the office of the Deputy Police Commissioner (Detection-1) in the suburb of Andheri, two members visited the Mumbai police headquarters in south Mumbai, officials said.

Continuing the pace, an FIR against the directors and actors was also registered in the town of Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh following a complaint from an official in little-known Hindutva outfit.

“The process of verifying the facts mentioned in the FIR filed against the director of the web series ‘Tandav’ and others for allegedly promoting hostility in different religious groups and hurting religious feelings is underway,” he said. Jabalpur Supplementary Police Superintendent (ASP), Amit Kumar. journalists.

In a related development, Madhya Pradesh Provisional Assembly Speaker Rameshwar Sharma wrote to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, demanding an FIR on the complaint filed by MP BJP Kadam and asking him to “move forward the legacy of “Bal Thackeray.

BJP leader Vjiay Goel and his supporters launched slogans against “Tandav” in the nation’s capital.

In Uttar Pradesh, FIRs against issuance have been filed in Lucknow, Greater Noida and Shahjahanpur. The plaintiffs alleged an inappropriate portrayal of UP police personnel, Hindu deities and a negative portrayal of a character playing the role of prime minister in the political drama.

On Monday, Shalabhmani Tripathi, media advisor to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, said the creators of “Tandav” will have to pay the price for hurting religious feelings.

In a statement on behalf of the show’s cast and crew, the directors apologized on Monday if they “unintentionally” hurt anyone’s feelings with their fictional show. They followed Tuesday with another statement of apology, thanking the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for its “guidance and support” in the matter.

“The cast and crew at Tandav have made the decision to make changes to the web series to address concerns raised about them,” the team said.

The creators said they had “the utmost respect” for the feelings of the people and did not intend to hurt or offend the feelings of “any individual, caste, community, race, religion or religious beliefs. or to insult or insult any institution, political party or person, living or dead “

While many political leaders, especially the BJP, have spoken out, mainstream showbiz figures have remained largely silent, with the exception of director Hansal Mehta and actor Swara Bhasker.

“I am Hindu and I am not offended by any #Tandav scene. Why #banTandavSeries #BanTandavNow ???” Bhasker tweeted on Tuesday.

“Tandav”, which premiered on the streaming platform last Friday, is not the first and certainly not the last show on streaming platforms, a booming market in India, to land in a soup for one. reason or another.

Most recently, the Netflix show A Suitable Boy, based on Vikram Seth’s bestselling novel, drew anger from the right-wing for a scene showing a Muslim man and a Hindu girl kissing in the back of a temple.

Before that, it was Amazon’s Pataal Lok who got in trouble for his description of community issues, and Leila, who called herself “anti-Hindu” for describing the dystopian future of Aryavarta where purity of blood is imposed.

The government recently placed OTT platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney + Hotstar, in addition to other news and online news content, under the responsibility of the Ministry of Information and Diffusion, which gives it the power to regulate the policies and rules of the digital space.

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