07/05/2021

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Amazon Prime Video apologises for offending Hindu beliefs in Indian political show


Business

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is pictured inside the company's office in Bengaluru

The logo of Amazon is pictured inside the company’s office in Bengaluru, India, Apr 20, 2018. (Photo: Reuters/Abhishek N Chinnappa)



(Updated: )

NEW DELHI: Amazon.com’s Prime Video streaming service on Tuesday (Mar 2) issued a rare apology to its Indian viewers for some scenes in its original political drama series Tandav, which allegedly hurt Hindu religious beliefs.

Tandav, a Hindi word meaning “fury”, stars top Bollywood actors. In several states it has faced police complaints and court cases alleging the show had depicted Hindu gods and goddesses in a derogatory manner, and offended religious beliefs. Lawmakers from India’s ruling nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party have also criticised it.

The Tandav controversy became a new headache for Amazon in India with public anger rising against the US tech giant and police questioning one of its top executives for hours in February over the show.

On Tuesday, Amazon issued a statement titled “Amazon Prime Video Apologizes”.

“Amazon Prime Video again deeply regrets that viewers considered certain scenes to be objectionable in the recently launched fictional series Tandav,” it said in the statement.

“This was never our intention, and the scenes that were objected to were removed or edited when they were brought to our attention,” it said.

Although legal cases against Netflix and Amazon Prime Video shows for offending beliefs are not uncommon in India, it is rare for a US tech giant to publicly apologise.

Amazon also said it recognised the need to constantly update its content evaluation processes to better serve viewers.

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