New Delhi: After issuing statement warning filmmakers and OTT platforms against “anti-Hindu” content, the Vishva Hindu Parishad has now shot off a letter to Netflix warning of both a legal battle and street agitations.
The VHP has particularly cited 5 instances that it said have hurt religious sentiments and where Hinduism is allegedly portrayed derogatorily. Leila, Ghoul, Chippa, Sacred Games and Krishna & His Leela are cited as examples with names of producers and directors where the VHP said, “In the name of creative freedom selectively only Hindu Religion is targeted”.
VHP Spokesperson Shriraj Nair claimed that if the OTT platform continues to air such content, they will not only face legal action to be initiated on behalf of the Sangh affiliate but “we will also be forced to take to the streets for peaceful agitations demanding a ban on your platform”.
Reminding Netflix of its history of agitations, the VHP started off the letter by saying, “We have been associated with many large scale movements for the last 5 decades for the Hindu cause.”
So what exactly is the VHP opposed to? Nair in the letter has accused Netflix of spreading misinformation about the Hindu way of worship, rituals and have even shown our glorious saints in bad light, many a time our Deities/God are ridiculed deliberately and intentionally or due to lack of understanding of the eternal vedantic way of life called Hindu Dharma. He has also alleged that some of the shows beamed on the platform spread “lies and propaganda” to malign Hinduism.
Making it’s opposition clear, the VHP claimed that “Attempts are being made to create humour through outrageous methods and depictions involving our Gods as well as other historic personalities, thereby purposely undermining and diminishing their image and importance in society. Our Gods are in this manner, being made an object of ridicule.”
Nair informed in the letter that the VHP has received multiple complaints and there is “pain, agony and anger” against certain “irresponsible web series”. All the series cited as examples created some controversy or the other when they were aired, hurting a section of the people, the VHP said.
On June 29, the Vishva Hindu Parishad had issued a stern warning to filmmakers and Over-the-top (OTT) media services against movies or web series that show Hindu religion in a disparaging manner. However, that time, it was a generic warning addressing OTT platforms like Netflix, Amazon, MX Player, Alt Balaji. However, this time around it is a specific case of warning addressed to only Netflix and instead of a tweet, the VHP chose to send off a letter on its official letterhead.
Late last year shows such as ‘Leila’, ‘Patriot Act’ (both streaming on Netflix) were flagged for their provocative content. Last year, a PIL in the Supreme Court had alleged that the content of several shows on OTT platforms violates provisions of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Information Technology Act.