A team of Uttar Pradesh Police on Thursday served a notice to Tandav director Ali Abbas Zafar, asking him to appear before an investigation officer on January 27 in Lucknow, reported Times Now. The makers of the Amazon Prime web series have been accused of hurting religious sentiments.
The Uttar Pradesh Police team visited Zafar’s house in Mumbai on Thursday. However, since his house was locked, they pasted the notice on his door. “We have served notice asking him to appear before the Investigation Officer on January 27 in Lucknow,” Anil Kumar Singh, an officer from the Hazratganj Police Station, told ANI. “His house was locked and nobody was there, so we pasted the notice there.”
This comes after a first information report was filed at Lucknow’s Hazratganj Kotwali police station against Zafar, Tandav producer Himanshu Krishna Mehra, writer Gaurav Solanki, Amazon Prime’s India head of original content Aparna Purohit and others for allegedly hurting religious sentiments. The makers are accused of hurting the religious sentiments of Hindus and promoting enmity on grounds of religion. The makers of the show are also accused of spreading “caste-based discrimination”.
Meanwhile, the Bombay High Court on Wednesday granted three weeks transit anticipatory bail to Zafar and three others in connection with the FIR filed in Uttar Pradesh, reported ANI. This will enable him to approach the appropriate court for regular pre-arrest bail, said Zafar’s lawyer Aniket Ujjwal Nikam.
Tandav is a political drama starring actors Saif Ali Khan, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub and Dimple Kapadia, which purportedly provides a commentary on India’s political scene under the Narendra Modi government. The show touches upon farmer agitations to student protests to police killings – all events that have happened under the administration of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
FIRs have been filed in Bihar and Mumbai as well. Amid the intensifying backlash, Amazon Prime Video on Tuesday caved in and agreed to make alterations to the series. “We have utmost respect for the sentiments of the people of our country,” said a statement from the cast and crew. Zafar also reiterated that the team had no intentions to hurt or offend the sentiments of any caste, race, community or religion.