Paatal Lok: Had Amazon US Initially Put Anushka Sharma's Show On Hold Over #MeToo Concerns Relating To Rape-Accused Tarun Tejpal?

A report in Mid-day states that Amazon US apparently decided to put Paatal Lok on hold as it was said to be based on rape-accused Tarun Tejpal’s book.

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Paatal Lok: Had Amazon US Initially Put Anushka Sharma's Show On Hold Over #MeToo Concerns Relating To Rape-Accused Tarun Tejpal?
Seems like even before its release, Anushka Sharma’s debut OTT production Paatal Lok is grabbing headlines. A latest Mid-day report states that Paatal Lok was in the pipeline over the past five years and had apparently faced an obstacle in 2018. Reportedly, when Tehelka editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal was accused of rape by a colleague in 2013 (he has been on bail since July 2014), Amazon US had decided to put the series on hold as the #MeToo movement was gaining ground that time. The Pari actress backed Amazon Show Paatal Lok is said to be based on Tarun Tejpal's book, The Story of my Assassins.

Paatal Lok starring Jaideep Ahlawat, Neeraj Kabi and Abhishek Banerjee in the leading roles will follow the similar narrative as of the book, while the only difference is that it will be told from cop’s perspective, portrayed by Jaideep. When Mid-day got in touch with producer Sudip Sharma he dismissed Kabi's character being inspired by Tejpal. He told the tabloid, "Neeraj Kabi's role has got nothing to do with Tarun; it's a fictional character.”
 
Further, when Sharma was asked if Amazon US had apparently wanted to axe the series, he refrained from commenting on the controversy. However, a source close the news revealed to Mid-day, “Creator Sudip Sharma and Amazon India had faith in their product and reasoned that the book was only the starting point. They pointed out that they had consciously distanced themselves and their offering from Tejpal. It was also a collective decision to develop Neeraj's journalist as a grey character, thus keeping the messaging of the show in the right place.”

Amazon Prime spokesperson, on the other hand, decided to remain silent about the Amazon US axing the show. He instead told Mid-day, “Paatal Lok is loosely inspired by an idea from the book. Creator-writer Sudip Sharma took inspiration from it, and with his team of writers, crafted a nuanced and immersive crime thriller. Tarun Tejpal was not involved in any phase of the development and production of the show. It is the story of an honest cop who unravels a deep nexus of crime. The characters are fictional and not based on any real-life personalities or incidents." (ALSO READ: Amazon Prime's Paatal Lok: Tarun Tejpal, Tehelka's Former Editor-In-Chief Was Not Involved In Its Making- EXCLUSIVE)

While creator Sharma said, “This book was a small part of it. We took a one-line plot from there, and then the writers explored many different situations. There are several other factors that have been added to our story. We decided to explore the life of a cop. [That character] is not based on a [real-life] person. The author of the book was not involved in the development or production of the show.”


Images Source: instagram/anushkasharma1588, newsexpress.com
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