The makers of Mirzapur issued an apology to Surender Mohan Pathak, who had accused the former of misrepresenting his 2010 book Dhabba.
The Hindi-language author, who has nearly 300 crime fiction novels to his credit, had tweeted to express his displeasure about the matter. Also, a strongly-worded letter, dated October 27, 2020, was sent to the creators of Mirzapur.
The bone of contention was a particular scene in episode three of season two of Mirzapur where the character of Bauji (Satyanand Tripathi), played by Kulbhushan Kharbanda, is reading the aforementioned book.
Pathak’s fans drew the author’s attention to this scene of Mirzapur 2 where the character of Tripathi, lying in his bed, is supposedly reading a section of the book which, to all intents and purposes, is explicit in nature.
Pathak said in his letter that neither is there any such scene in his book as described in the ‘reading of the novel’ in the web series nor is there a character named Baldev Raj in Dhabba whose name has been mentioned.
The author takes great pride in his work and mentioned as much in the letter to the creators of Mirzapur 2, about how depicting him as a writer of suggestive prose taints his image of being an impeccable mystery writer.
In response to Pathak’s letter, the creator/writer of Mirzapur on behalf of the producers, Excel Media & Entertainment, tendered an apology for ‘inadvertently hurting your [the author’s] sentiments’.
Puneet Krishna, in his letter dated October 29, 2020, acknowledged that it was ‘an unrelated voiceover’ that supplemented the particular scene. He also assured the author that either the book cover of Dhabba will be blurred in the scene or the problematic voiceover will be removed, within a reasonable time.
Pathak has accepted the apology and expects that the scene will be corrected within the due period mentioned in the letter.
The author mentioned in a statement about how he has been writing pulp fiction for nearly 60 years but that he never used either sex or violence to further his stories. And the visual medium being as impressionable as it is, he fears that people who have watched Mirzapur will remember only this as being his life’s work.
Mirzapur is an action-crime thriller and its second season recently premiered on Amazon Prime Video. The web series depicts the governance in the Purvanchal region of Uttar Pradesh which is marred by the prevailing rule of mafia dons and their endless rivalry amidst use of drugs, gunrunning, and blatant lawlessness.
Pathak began his career as a Hindi translator of Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels and the works of thriller writer James Hadley Chase. He later wrote his own ‘James Bond’ series.
Dhabba is a part of what is called the “Sunil” series, which consists of at least 122 novels and is considered as the author’s major work. Sunil is an upright investigative journalist who is willing to go to any lengths in the pursuit of justice.