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MP minister, protem speaker seek ban on ‘Tandav’ web series

Madhya Pradesh minister Vishvas Sarang and state Assembly’s protem Speaker Rameshwar Sharma on Monday appealed to Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar to ban Amazon Prime Video’s series “Tandav” for allegedly ridiculing Hindu deities.

Talking to PTI, Sarang said it is “very unfortunate” that deities of a majority community are ridiculed like this.

“A censor board is needed for the OTT segment as it is increasingly becoming popular,” he said.

“I have written a letter to the information and broadcasting (I&B) minister demanding a ban on this series. I also said there should be a law to control the OTT platforms,” Sarang informed.

The minister said he has also mailed a letter to the CEO of Amazon Prime to immediately withdraw the web series.

“If they do not withdraw this web series, we will appeal to the society to boycott such OTT platforms. I request everyone to send mails in this regard to the CEO of the OTT platform,” he said.

MP Assembly’s protem Speaker Rameshwar Sharma also urged Javadekar to ban “Tandav” web series, and said various organisations and individuals have opposed it as it allegedly ridiculed the Hindu deities.

“There should be a law in the country to stop the efforts to mock Hindu deities on such OTT platforms. Why people do not dare to mock other religions? Why are Hindu deities ridiculed every time? This web series should be banned,” Sharma told PTI.

Earlier, BJP MP Manoj Kotak and party’s Mumbai MLA Ram Kadam had also raised objections over the web series.

“Tandav”, starring actors Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia, Sunil Grover, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Dino Morea, Kumud Mishra, Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub, Gauhar Khan and Kritika Kamra, premiered on the streaming platform on Friday.

Filmmaker Ali Abbas Zafar has created, directed and produced the political drama with Himanshu Kishan Mehra and it is written by Gaurav Solanki, best known for “Article 15”.

Taking cognisance of complaints over the web series, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on Sunday sought an explanation from the Amazon Prime Video on the issue.

Amazon Prime Video’s PR on Sunday said the platform “won’t be responding” on the matter.

The government recently brought OTT platforms, such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+ Hotstar, besides other online news and current affairs content, under the ambit of the I&B ministry, giving it powers to regulate policies and rules for the digital space.

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