Tandav director Ali Abbas Zafar has issued a statement of apology to viewers for hurting religious sentiments. The Amazon Prime Video web series, which released on 15 January, has been mired in controversy after BJP leaders alleged a scene in the show "mocked" Shiva and hurt the sentiments of Hindus.
Zafar, in his statement, emphasized that the series was fictional and that neither the cast nor the crew had intended to offend anyone.
"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 statement read.
"The cast and crew of Tandav take cognizance of the concerns expressed by the people and unconditionally apologize if it has unintentionally hurt anybody's sentiments," it added.
Read the full statement here:
The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting on Sunday, 17 January, sought an explanation from Amazon Prime Video after taking cognisance of complaints that the series had insulted Hindu deities and hurt religious sentiments.
An FIR has been filed in Lucknow's Hazratganj Kotwali against the makers of Tandav. Amazon Prime Video's India head of original content Aparna Purohit, director of Tandav Ali Abbas Zafar, the show's producer Himanshu Krishna Mehra and writer Gaurav Solanki, are among those named in the FIR. The charges include promoting enmity between different religious groups, race, place of birth, making destruction, damage, or defilement of a place of worship or an object held sacred.
Separate criminal complaints have also been filed before courts in Delhi and Bihar seeking action against the streaming platform and the makers of the web series. In addition to the show's writer, director and producer, the complaint filed before the Delhi court, on behalf of Hindu Sena founder Vishnu Gupta, also names actors Saif Ali Khan, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub and Gauhar Khan.
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