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The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to grant protection from arrest to the makers and actors of the Amazon Prime web series "Tandav".

"We cannot use the power under Section 482 CrPC. We are not inclined to grant interim protection," the SC bench observed.

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The SC bench comprising of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and MR Shah refused to grant any interim protection to the accused persons apprehending arrest from the police departments of six states.

It further added: "Your right to freedom of speech is not absolute. You cannot play the role of a character that hurts the sentiments of a community."

Actor Zeeshan Ayyub, Amazon Creative Head Aparna Purohit, and the maker of the series Himanshu Kishan Mehra had moved the apex court asking for a freeze on the possible arrest.

They had also asked the SC to order that the criminal proceedings, which have been initiated against them in various cities for allegedly hurting religious sentiments, be clubbed and transferred to a Mumbai court.

Tandav is facing criminal cases for hurting religious sentiments and insulting religion punishable under Sections 153A and 295 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

As many as three FIRs have been filed against the makers and artists of the web series in Uttar Pradesh at Lucknow, Greater Noida and Shahjahanpur for the alleged inappropriate depiction of UP Police personnel, deities, and adverse portrayal of a character playing the role of prime minister in the show.

"Tandav", a nine-episode political thriller starring Bollywood A-listers Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia and Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub, started streaming recently.

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