• Author Name: Seema Nandalal Saroj
  • Details:  Advocate, Bombay High Court, B.Com, LLM, Diploma Cyber Law Two plus years of experience in handling civil matters, Administrative tribunal matters, currently practicing in small causes court and High Court

Gita, Bhagvad Gita, Mahabharata, Ramayana and many more. Indians have a habit of co-relating our lives with these mythological stories. Likewise, in this story the socio-economic divisions in India are metaphorically compared with the mythological Indian concepts of Swarg, Dharti and Paatal. The climax of the story is also based on the mythological fable of Yudhisthira's dog from the Mahabharata.   

The neo-noir crime drama is about a disillusioned cop who lands the case of an assassination attempt gone wrong. The story projects a maze, which steadily unfolds the filthy sides of each and every character i.e smarmy politicians, shifty cops, deadbeat contract killers, a wily primetime news presenter dodging big and small conspiracies, and a pair of East Delhi policemen negotiating a maze. 

The show depicts an insight into various forms of discrimination in India, including dislike against Muslims, other Religions and lower castes, which is punishable under the Constitution of India as per article 14 & article 15. The issues of child abuse, discrimination against transgenders as well as sexual abuse of transgenders, the abysmal state of women safety in rural India, the pent up prejudices against Muslims (punishable as per article 14, 15, and 16 under the Constitution of India), the dehumanisation of the lower castes and the rage and angst of the have-nots against the haves." The Indian Constitution article 14, 15, 16, 17, 21, 46 and 51A are applicable in all the above crimes as very well portrayed in this series. A very striking indepth issues of transgender is highlighted in this series (sec 354 of IPC). Let me throw a light on one of the landmark case of National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) vs Union of India wherein, the Supreme Court considered its progressive stance towards transgender persons. The right to self-determination of gender was guaranteed by the Supreme Court in this case. This shows that the laws pertaining to transgenders are now enhanced and well amended so that the concept of equality irrespective of their religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them can be established as per our Indian Constitution.    

This story captures India’s messy, contradictory realities. The four characters depict a ravaged India, where people are consumed and destroyed for no fault of theirs, where they in turn consume and destroy others. The lynching of one of the character by cow vigilantes on railway platform due to him being just a Muslim. A Dalit boy bullied because of his lower caste who, overwhelmed with rage, murders his tormenters.  There are umpteen number of gorier scenarios, which depicts the factual scene of a common man belonging from a very remote interior, who is harassed by the system through all means and methods. Not even that the police force and the nation's central investigating agencies, too, are putty in the hands of the powers that be. Whereas, a police who is a government employee also, on his part, is at the receiving end of gratuitous, condescending advice from colleagues as well as others on account of his religious identity. The uneven and hierarchy based behavior within the Police department portrays that inequality still exists in India (“as per article 16 of the Indian Constitution there should be Equality of opportunity in matters of public employment”).           

The recent brutal murder case of an Elephant in Kerala was worst harm done an innocent animal by human kind. But in this series the two essential characters who have nothing in common taught us to love stray dogs unconditionally. Their fondness for canines depicts that animals are also a vital life on the earth, which deserves equal love and care as we human beings do.     

Paatal Lok is an epic story as it covers all sorts of injustice happening to the common mass in today's era. The story indirectly teaches that the world is too wounded, too broken, to be pieced together and there are enormous rectifications that our Indian law & justice system needs to get in action for.

Adv. Seema Saroj