Volume. 12228

Docudrama stirs outrage among Iran’s Bakhtiaris
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Bita Farahi acts in a scene from “Ancient Land”.
Bita Farahi acts in a scene from “Ancient Land”.
TEHRAN -- A TV series based upon historical events that occurred in Iran in the aftermath of the Allied occupation of the country during the Second World War has provoked outrage from the Bakhtiari ethnic group.
Since late last week, large groups of Bakhtiaris have held gatherings in Ahvaz, Izeh, Aligudarz, Dezful, Masjed Soleiman and several other cities that are major centers of the ethnic group to protest against the docudrama, entitled “Ancient Land”, that they claim is insulting  Bakhtiaris by linking a Bakhtiari family to the Iranian monarchy and calling them the British occupiers’ agent.
They have demanded the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) put a stop to airing the TV series and apologies from the producers.
In a statement published in a number of Persian news agencies outlets on Saturday, director Kamal Tabrizi said that the name for the family was selected without harmful intent.
“Making a judgment about the good and bad characters of the series requires patience and time,” he added.
In addition, Tabrizi and a number of his colleagues wrote a letter to IRIB Managing Director Ezzatollah Zarghami on Saturday and briefed him on the story of the TV series.
“Undoubtedly, the producers of the serial meant no disrespect to the honorable Bakhtiari people. The coming episodes of the series will prove this fact. However, we offer apologies if the early parts of the serial caused harm to our Bakhtiari compatriots,” they wrote in the letter published by a several Persian news agencies on Saturday.
Zarghami demanded that the IRIB deputy director pursue making programs “to familiarize the people of the country with the Bakhtiaris’ braveries and their devotion to the country.”
The IRIB announced on Saturday that Zarghami plans to send a number of expert groups to the Bakhtiari areas this week to provide some feedback on the series.
“Resuming the broadcast of the serial depends on the result of research, which will be conducted by the groups, and the decision of the managing director of IRIB,” IRIB’s Public Relations Office Director Taqi Sohrabi said in a press release.
The TV series is aired from IRIB’s Channel 3 on Thursdays. The forth episode was broadcast last week. 

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