Hard-hitting narrative

The Asian Age.  | nayare ali

Entertainment, In Other News

A gritty series that highlights the trauma of the Nirbhaya rape case and the drama that ensued till the rapists were nabbed.

Shefali Shah and Denzil Smith in Delhi Crime

Delhi Crime (Netflix)
Starring:  Shefali Shah, Rasika Dugal, Adil Hussain, Denzil Smith, Jaya Bhattacharya, Rajesh Talang
Written and directed by Richie Mehta   
Rating: (4 stars)

December 16, 2012 will forever be ingrained in our collective memory. That was the black day when a 23-year-old physiotherapy intern was brutally gangraped and assaulted in a bus journey in Munirka, South Delhi. But nothing hits you more harder than the real life depiction of Nirbhaya’s (as she was named) trauma in the Netflix series, Delhi Crime.

This seven-episode saga traces the horrific rape case beginning with a dramatic opening episode. A naked and injured couple is thrown out of a moving bus on a dark street, where they are found by onlookers. The gripping drama traces the police investigations and the arrest of the five criminals involved in the gory rape case. The recreation of the inhuman torture inflicted on Chandini ( the reel life version of Nirbhaya) and portrayed effectively by Yashaswini Dayamma is gut wrenching and deeply disturbing. Despite all that one has heard and read, nothing prepares you for the sense of revulsion and disgust (not just as a woman but a human being) on the cruel and psychotic nature of a disturbed man— Ram Singh (name changed to Jay Singh)— the main perpertrator, who inserted rods into the victim and pulled out her inner parts. Mridul Sharma is so evil that one tends to forget that he is only playing a dark character.

Shefali Shah who reprises the role of DCP Chhaya Sharma  who tirelessly lead the search operation, is one of the most  underated actors in the industry. She plays DCP Varthika Chowdhury, the tough cop with a sensitive core with finesse. Her chemistry with Rasika Dugal, who plays the undertraining IPS officer, Neeti Singh are a delight to watch.  Adil Hussain who plays police comissioner Kumar Vijay is somewhat wasted in a brief role.

So what makes this series a compelling watch? Coz it not just makes you realise the trauma Nirbhaya’s family has undergone in their quest to seek justice for their beloved daughter. But how unsafe Delhi can be for women. It also highlights the harsh lives that our men in uniform (read cops) lead. Staying away from family, overworked and underpaid can take a toll on any human. But there has been rampant criticism that cops have been shown in positive light. There was public outrage that the police were caught napping on that fatal night. There were also questions raised as to why there were not enough buses patrolling that region so that the crime could have been averted. The fall guy turned out to be the police commissioner, who in this series, refuses to quit.

The drama is edgy and slick as it traverses across the interiors of North India, where the culprits had escaped too and the secret operations undertaken to arrest them.