Tandav, web series

Recently on 15th of January amazon prime released a web series on it’s OTT platform named “Tandav” directed by Ali Abbas Zafar starring Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia, Sunil Grover. Basically it’s a Indian political drama. Since it has been released, the web series is getting a lot of negative reviews. In just a day it has become the center of controversy.

The heart of the controversy

The main plot of this nine-episode series is based on the struggle of getting the power of Prime Minister after his death. The first episode starts with a farmer protest and few scenes were focused on a student leader. According to those protesters, these are signifying the case of Jawaharlal Nehru university and Kanhaiya Kumar.

The main scene which created this dispute is in the first episode. In that scene actor Mohd. Zeeshan Ayub plays the role of Lord Shiva in a stage drama, where he theows a dialogue “Azaadi, what the…” in that same scene the narrator says, Lord Ram’s popularity on social media is gaining day by day, Lord Shiva should do something to gain his own popularity, on which Shiva replied, should he change his display picture?


How people reacted

A part of people has became furious of these scenes and said that these clips are made to make fun of Hindu Gods and Hindu religion. A hashtag in twitter #BanTandavNow started getting in trend after this dispute. Even a part of social media has lebeled it as an Anti Hindu series.
MP of Bharatiya Janata Party Manoj Kotak wrote to Prakash Javadekar who is information and bJroadcasting minister, requesting a ban on “Tandav” for mocking Hindu Gods and hurting people’s believe. He said

Different organisations and individuals have complained that Hindu Gods and Goddesses have been ridiculed in ‘Tandav’ web series. Comments have been passed about them.

Manoj Kotak

BJP leader Kapil Mishra claimed this series is “Anti dalit and full of communal hatred against Hindus” he also asked people to wrote Prakash Javadekar for putting a ban on this web series.

Even Maharashtra MLA Ram Kadam tweeted, asking for taking away those part from the series where Hindu Gods were insulted. In his tweet he said “Tandava will be boycotted until necessary changes are made. #BanTandavNow.” Former UP chief minister tweeted that in the sake of ‘peace and harmony’ those offensive part should be removed.

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On Monday, director Ali Abbas Zafar apologized for unintentionally hurting people’s feelings. But before that a police complain against him and the whole cast was already made. In his tweet Ali Abbas Zafar apologized from the side of whole cast and crew saying,

We have been closely monitoring viewer reactions to the web series ‘Tandav’ and today during a discussion, the Ministry of information and Broadcasting have informed us regarding a large number of grievances and petitions received on various facets with serious concerns and apprehension regarding it’s content hurting the sentiments of the people.

Ali Abbas Zafar

He continued with-

The web series ‘Tandav’ is a work of fiction and any resemblance to acts and persons and events is purely coincidental. The cast and crew did not have any intention to offend the sentiments of any individual, caste, community, race, religion or religious beliefs or insult or outrage any institution, political party or person, living or dead. The cast and the crew of ‘Tandav’ take cognizance of the concerns expressed by the people and unconditionally apologize if it has unintentionally hurt anybody’s sentiment.

Ali Abbas Zafar

What happened next?

However on Tuesday, the cast and crew of the series said that they have decided to apply some changes to there political series to address concern. Director Ali Abbas Zafar posted a statement saying that they will make some changes in those particular scenes. He also thanked the ministry of information and broadcasting for the guidance in this consequence.

“Tandav” is not the only online platform series which is facing such controversies, earlier some shows like Sacred Games, Patal Lok also was backlashed by public. The government recently has brought all these online platform like Netflix, Amazon prime, Hotstar and other news website under the range of the ministry of information and broadcasting, giving it right to control policies and rules for the digital space.