Supreme Court Wednesday will hear a batch of pleas seeking rejection of criminal complaints lodged in various states against Ali Abbas Zafar, the director of the web series 'Tandav'. The top court shall also hear other petitions which accuse the makers of the show of hurting the religious sentiments of Hindus.
Apart from Zafar, Amazon Prime India head Aparna Purohit, producer Himanshu Mehra, the show's writer Gaurav Solanki and actor Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub have also filed three distinct pleas against the registration of FIRs against the show in various states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra.
A bench comprising justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and M R Shah would hear the petitions against the FIRs.
Earlier, the Bombay High Court had granted a transit pre-arrest bail to Zafar, Purohit, Mehra and Solanki against whom a case was registered in Lucknow on charges of hurting religious sentiments through the web series.
The four have been booked in Lucknow under sections 153 A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race and so on), 295 (injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class), 501 (1)(B) (public mischief with intent to cause fear or alarm) of the IPC and under relevant sections of the Information Technology Act.
At least three FIRs have been lodged against the makers and artistes of "Tandav" in Uttar Pradesh - at Lucknow, Greater Noida and Shahjahanpur - for the alleged inappropriate depiction of UP Police personnel, deities, and adverse portrayal of a character playing the role of prime minister in the show.
Similar FIRs have been lodged against people associated with the making and airing of the web series in states like MP, Maharashtra and Karnataka.
The pleas have made various state governments and police officers as parties.
"Tandav", a nine-episode political thriller starring Bollywood A-listers Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia and Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub, started streaming recently.
With PTI Inputs