Exclusive: They didn’t understand the sarcasm behind the words: Abhishek Banerjee on racist and sexist slur in ‘Paatal Lok’ that has angered Gorkha community


Abhishek Banerjee is reaping accolade for his portrayal of Hathoda Tyagi in Amazon Prime Video web series Paatal Lok. Abhishek has captured the imagination of the audience with his controlled rage and deadly stare in Paatal Lok. In an exclusive chat with PeepingMoon.com Abhishek spoke about the acclaim that is being garnered by the show, the controversies surrounding it and his late found stardom.

During the interview, Abhishek was asked about the racism controversy surrounding the transgender character in the series and the words 'Neapli R***i*' used for her. The Gorkha community has taken a strong offence at the use of sexist and racist slur in the second episode of Paatal Lok. To this Abhishek said, “I feel what’s happened is that everyone is speaking the lines on a surface level, I think they don’t understand the sarcasm and the satire that it’s not against the people but for their cause. I think that’s where the interpretation differs. I believe raising questions should never stop but right questions should be asked.”

RECOMMENDED READ: Paatal Lok Review: Jaideep Ahlawat’s and Abhishek Banerjee’s neo-noir web series throws light on how crimes are categorized as per 'social class'

The transgender character in the series is played by Mairembam Ronaldo Singh who hasn’t spoken anything about the controversy yet!

Besides Abhishek and Mairembam, Paatal Lok stars Jaideep Ahlawat, Ishwak Singh, Neeraj Kabi, Swastika Mukherjee, Rajesh Sharma, Anup Jalota, Niharika Lyra Dutta and others.

Paatal Lok is produced by Anushka Sharma and Karnesh Sharma and is directed by Prosit Roy and Avinash Arun. It is streaming currently on Amazon Prime Video.

Watch the full interview here:


(Transcribed by: Vandana Srivastawa)