Scoop true story: The shocking actual-life case that inspired Netflix’s series. The play is based on the memoir of a notable Indian crime journalist.
The Hindi-language series Scoop, which is now available on Netflix, follows Jagruti Pathak, a crime journalist accused of murdering a fellow reporter.
However, the 10-part series, which investigates the links between the media, the Mumbai underworld, and the authorities, is not purely fiction. Despite the dramatic licence used, the drama is based on a shocking factual story.
Jigna Vora, an Indian crime journalist, was arrested in 2012 for plotting to assassinate Jyotirmoy Dey, a well-known face in the Mumbai crime reporting scene. The 56-year-old, also known as J Dey, was on his way home when he was killed by four men on motorcycles.
He has previously written for The Indian Express and The Hindustan Times before becoming the Mid Day newspaper’s investigative editor. He was covering the black market oil trade, often known as the “oil mafia” before his death.
Vora, 37, was also accused of deleting evidence while working as the deputy bureau chief of the English-language daily Asian Age at the time.
Vora was acquitted of all charges together with another suspect seven years after her arrest, part of which she spent behind bars.
Chhota Rajan, the boss of one of the city’s crime syndicates, was sentenced to life in prison for organising Dey’s murder.
Rajan had already been on the run for three decades, fleeing India to live under a false identity in Australia, Thailand, and Indonesia.
Following Dey’s death, journalists in the city conducted protests to express their concerns about the lack of journalist protection.
Mr. Dey’s assassination “underscores the growing threat to investigative journalists from powerful political and business interests engaging in illegal acts,” according to the Mumbai Press Club.
“In recent weeks and months, scores of incidents of journalists being beaten or threatened by politicians and local mafia have come to light.”
Behind Bars in Byculla: My Days in Prison, Vora’s memoir, describes her time in prison, as well as court proceedings and her experience as a journalist.
Director Hansal Mehta told Variety on how the series expands on the book, which is “primarily based in the prison”: “I found the world that led her to prison very fascinating.” It evolved into a wider story about a middle-class girl in Mumbai with middle-class ambitions of being the top crime reporter in the city, with pieces on page one.
“She chases those ambitions blindly, not realising that in the process, the reporter becomes the reported, which fascinated me.”