The makers of the popular comedy show “Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah” have received a threat from a regional Indian political party in Maharashtra state for describing “Hindi” as the language of Mumbai in an episode of the series.
Although Hindi is widely spoken in different parts of India, Raj Thackeray-headed Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) has been a strong proponent of the state’s regional language Marathi.
Shortly after the remark evoked objections from the MNS, the creator of the series, Asit Kumarr Modi, issued a clarification on social media.
“Mumbai is in Maharashtra and Marathi is the official language of our Maharashtra. There is no doubt about that. I am an Indian. I am a Maharashtrian and also a Gujarati. I respect all Indian languages”.
मुंबई महाराष्ट्र में है और हमारे महाराष्ट्र की राजभाषा भाषा मराठी ही है. इस में कोई डाउट नहीं है. मैं भारतीय हूँ . महाराष्ट्रियन हूँ और गुजराती भी हूँ. सारी भारतीय भाषाओं का सम्मान करता हूँ. 🙏🏻🙏🏻 जय हिन्द,— Asit Kumarr Modi (@AsitKumarrModi) March 3, 2020
The controversy started after the airing of an episode of the show in which the main characters wanted to write a "thought for the day" on a society’s notice board in their respective native languages. One of the characters in the episode stated that the locality is in Mumbai and that the language of the city is Hindi, so they should all write in Hindi.
The statement attracted the attention of Ameya Khopkar, president of the cinema wing of MNS, who threatened the showrunner in a social media post in which he mentioned that people, despite knowing that Marathi is the language of Mumbai, are deliberately spreading misinformation and that they should be taught a lesson.
“Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah” is the longest-running comedy fiction show by Limca Book of Records and airs on Indian TV channel SAB.