My take on "Paatal Lok"
It's "strictly on need to know basis" that Amazon Prime has once again left the mark with it's newly floated series "Paatal Lok" and has further cemented it's position as prime online streaming platform particularly in terms of Indian content.
Well, basically Pataal Lok is a gripping crime thriller with exceptionally strong language and occasional gory scenes in the greater schemes of human follies and concomitant polysemy of living and existence itself.
Prima facie what begins as a foiled encounter attempt on the Yamuna Bridge with in station limits of the Outer Jamuna Paar Police Station turns out to be just the tip of iceberg and in turn leads the unsuspecting simpleton Inspector Hathi Ram Chaudhary right up to the doorstep of inferno beneath surface of the earth and further leading to the darker and murkier truths of the system itself.
The protagonist of the series Inspector Hathi Ram Chaudhary is believed to be a nincompoop cop who had never been close to the real investigation and is out of nowhere entrusted or rather framed into investigating the grandest and the most high profile case of his life which is apparently made to appear like an open and shut case but actually it isn't and determined Inspector Hathi Ram Chaudhary who now has once a life time opportunity to take a break from his humdrum existence, decides to take the plunge to attempt his best shot and embarks upon a thrilling bone breaking rigmarole to the badlands of Uttar Pradesh in the temple town of Chitrakoot to unravel the unsaid and unknown flagitious past of the prime accused Hathoda Tyagi and in his bid to pursue the hidden truth of case, Inspector Hathi Ram Chaudhary is finally able to stumble upon the uneasy truth and is able to manage and arrange a high profile truce between the warring sides. He forays deep into the case of his life by challenging the preconceived prognosis of events and emerge alive out of this mess contrary to the expectations of everyone barring his confidante and colleague Ansari who himself is struggling hard to keep the minority stereotypes at bay and make it large in his life.
This series has got an eclectic outlook and an almost perfect ensemble cast and characters which represents a wide array of people coming from totally different backgrounds and with incomparable aspirations like someone wants to have absolute creative hold over his channel, someone likes to be loved and raise children, someone holds the canines dear, someone wants medals and promotions, someone wants a sex change operation to marry the love of her life, someone who is love lorn wants his love to be reciprocated, someone wants to keep his unwavering loyalty intact, someone wants to overcome anxiety, someone wants to rise above and touch the sky, someone wants to be still human and be righteously humane, someone wants to blend in as he is tired being a misfit, someone wants to be a social climber, someone wants to remain at the helm of power and then there is this one named Inspector Hathi Ram Chaudhary who is like a tired and an exhausted pigeon with ever haunting gloom and despondency written large all over his face and yet a family man and thus susceptible to errors and wishes like he wants to see respect in eyes of his son who is visibly embarassed of his jumbo name and his profession as a cop, above all he has to battle interdepartmental rivalry and fear of being left out and trampled by his subordinates.
Indeed Paatal Lok narrates an immersive and powerfully riveting tale enacted by it's richly layered characters who represents a wide social and geo political spectrum ranging from Dalit social mobility and skewed up binary gender notions, from caste based atrocities to the women being mercilessly raped in the patriarchal set up of society, from dreaded dacoity to political bonhomie leading to the alleys of power, from new wave nationalism to ages old rigid social subjugation and domination, from rural ruckus to ugly urban myths, from idea of peace to the ideologies of terrorism, from Delhi Belly of Hazrat Nizamuddin to the dubious Delhi of Patiala House Court, from parched Bundelkhand to prosperous Punjab and prevalent notions of pride and prestige therein.
Most importantly and fundamentally Paatal Lok attempts an explanation to the very conjecture of the three different realms and the thin line between Swarg Lok, Bhoo Lok and the infamous Paatal Lok.