Netflix is pushing back against a legal petition seeking the removal of an unflattering reference to an assassinated Indian Prime Minister in 'Sacred Games,' its first Indian original series


  • Netflix’s first original series, “Sacred Games,” has been under legal pressure for an unflattering reference to an assassinated Indian Prime Minister.
  • Netflix was reportedly in the process of changing a term in the subtitles of the show.
  • But Netflix counsel told the Delhi High Court on Tuesday that Netflix did not want to change the word.

Netflix has been facing legal heat for its first original Indian series, “Sacred Games,” because of the show’s references to former Indian Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi, who was assassinated in 1991. But the streaming service seems to be pushing back.

“Sacred Games” is about a Sikh cop in the Mumbai police force named Sartaj Singh (played by the Bollywood star Saif Ali Khan), and a mysterious Mumbai criminal, Ganesh Gaitonde (Nawazuddin Siddiqui), caught in a game of cat and mouse after Gaitonde calls Singh to tell him of an attack on the city set to take place in 25 days.

In one scene in the show, Gaitonde calls Gandhi “fattu,” which is translated in English subtitles as “p—-.” Since the show streams online, it is not censored by India’s Censor Board.But that didn’t stop a member of India’s Congress political party’s legal team from filing a petition in the Delhi High Court for Netflix to delete any scenes that reference Gandhi.

Time reported last month that Netflix was in the process of replacing “p—-” with the word “wimp” in the show’s subtitles. But Netflix reportedly still hasn’t changed the reference, and doesn’t have any plans to do so.

According to Indian news outlet India Today, Netflix’s counsel informed the Delhi High Court on Tuesday that Netflix doesn’t want to change the word because the series is available in numerous languages that were translated by different people.

“My instructions are that we don’t want to change the word,” said Chander Lal, a senior advocate appearing for Netflix.

India Today said the issue was scheduled for another hearing on September 20.

Netflix did not immediately return a request for comment.

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