A long-running comedy serial Taarak Mehta Ka Oolta Chashma (TMKOC) recently made headlines after producer Asit Kumarr Modi was accused of mental and sexual harassment by a TV actress. Furthermore, it was alleged that the show had a toxic work environment
Modi denied the allegations, saying “Emotionally I feel sad. As I consider everyone like my family. And, again I am saying I have never done anything wrong to anyone. I have tried to keep everyone happy because I am giving happiness every day through my show. Hence, I try to keep my team also very happy, and in a nice and positive atmosphere.”
In the interview with IANS, he further elaborated about how the show has overcome several hurdles.
Allegations of sexual harassment, mental harassment against TMKOC makers
The aforementioned actor, Monika Bhadoriya who played the role of Bawri had made serious allegations against the operations head, Sohail Ramani, and his assistant. She claimed that they insulted her and asked her to leave the set on March 7. Later, the show’s makers sent her a notice, citing financial losses due to her absence, which led her to seek legal advice and send them a legal notice.
The actress stated that she has evidence to support her claims. She also revealed that the show’s producer had made sexually suggestive comments on multiple occasions, but she hesitated to speak up earlier out of fear of repercussions.
Another actor from TMKOC, Priya Ahuja, who is married to the former director of the show, Malav Rajda, also came forward with harassment allegations against the team. After her husband left the show, she claimed that the team cut off all communication with her.
Priya’s issues with the production started before 2020 and worsened after shooting resumed following the lockdown. Despite her desire to return to TMKOC due to her young child, the team never contacted her, and her attempts to reach out to Asit Modi and others received no response or cold replies. She also highlighted the presence of casual sexism on the set.
“Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah” is one of India’s longest-running and most popular television sitcoms. The show, based on the column “Duniya Ne Undha Chasma” written by the renowned Gujarati writer Taarak Mehta, first premiered in July 2008. Set in the Gokuldham Co-operative Society in Mumbai, the sitcom revolves around the lives of its diverse residents and aims to promote family values, humor, and social issues in a light-hearted manner.
Over the years, “TMKOC” has garnered a massive fan following due to its relatable characters, clean comedy, and entertaining storylines. The show has successfully tackled various societal issues and cultural topics with a touch of humor, making it a favorite among audiences of all ages.
Other controversies around TMKOC
Actor Disha Vakani who used to play the role of Dayaben, a hyper but supportive housewife, has been missing from the show since 2017, when she took time off for maternity leave and never returned. There have been reports of ongoing negotiations with her as the makers want the actress to return and continue portraying Dayaben, a portrayal loved by fans.
Since then, many important actors including Shailesh Lodha, who played the titular Taarak Mehta have left the show and been replaced by others.
It remains to be seen how these serious allegations will affect the show and the makers.