Makers of Amazon Prime Video's latest web series 'Tandav' have removed the controversial scene after their second meeting with Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting officials. The I&B Ministry had received multiple complaints against the web series for its depiction of Hindu gods in the show.
The now deleted scene features Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub playing a character inspired a Lord Shiva holding a trishul (trident) at a college theatre festival in the first episode of the series. One of the actors in the scene talks about the character's social media following and how he can amplify it by posting and/or tweeting frequently. This is then followed by the contentious 'Azaadi' chants by the audience members.
Three FIRs have been registered against the latest Amazon web series in three different cities-Lucknow, Mumbai and Greater Noida. The latest FIR was registered against the show in Mumbai's Ghatkopar Police Station. The FIR was registered under Sections 153 (A), 295 (A) and 505 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). Amazon India originals head Aparna Purohit, director Ali Abbas Zafar, producer Himanshu Mehra, writer Gaurav Solanki, Saif Ali Khan and a few other actors featuring in the series have been named in this FIR.
Hundreds of activists staged a dharna and demonstration at Jantar Mantar in Delhi, seeking the arrest of the writer and director of Tandav. This demonstration was led by former Union minister and Delhi BJP President Vijay Goel.
Meanwhile, Ali Abbas Zafar has tendered an unconditional apology and tweeted, "We have utmost respects for the sentiments of people of our country. We did not intend to hurt or offend the sentiments of any individual, caste, community, race, religion or religious beliefs or insult or outrage any institution, political party or persons living or dead. The cast and crew of Tandav have made the decision to implement the changes to the web series to address the concerns raised towards the same. We thank the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for the guidance and support in the matter. We once again apologise if the series has unintentionally hurt anybody's sentiments."