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Police probing intimidation charges against S African anti-Indian lobby leader

Press Trust of India  |  Johannesburg 

A South African Black anti-Indian lobby currently facing serious charges is in hot water again, this time for alleged intimidation of internationally acclaimed Indian-origin filmmaker

confirmed that they were investigating a case of intimidation against

Mfeka, the of the anti-Indian lobby group 'Injenje Yaba Nguni' had earlier threatened to set alight Singh's 'Videovision' offices in if a planned TV series being produced by the company does not portray the "underlying tensions" between Indians and indigenous Africans.

The series titled 'Imbewu: The Seed', has been commissioned by the national TV channel '' as a social cohesion project reflecting on the lives of South African Indians and Africans living together harmoniously in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, which is home to 70 per cent of the country's Indian-origin citizens.

The series is being co-produced by Singh along with award-winning and celebrated filmmaker Ndlovu. The latter two are Black South Africans.

But Mfeka claimed that the series would show that the relations between Indians and Africans were good, contrary to what he believed was a strained relationship.

Mfeka demanded that the three producers make a commitment to show what he called the "reality" of alleged labour exploitation, racism and abuse by Indian businesses of Black South Africans.

Mfeka is frequently in the headlines for his anti-Indian comments.

In 2014, the and the laid charges of against Mfeka at the after he wrote in his newsletter that South African Indians, including Mahatma Gandhi, were "racist and exploited Africans".

The case is still going on after repeated requests from Mfeka for postponements.

A number of Indian leaders have, in the past, invited Mfeka to refrain from making generic racist allegations and rather to bring details of possible isolated incidents of such exploitation to their attention for action, but he has failed to do so.

"'Imbewu: The Seed' will be in a class of its own, reflecting the multi-cultural environment which makes and the province of KwaZulu unique," Singh said.

"The show has the ability to cross the cultural divide and promote social cohesion in South Africa, showcasing a hybrid of cultures in today," Singh added.

of '' decried the threats to 'Videovision'.

"We find (Mfeka's) threat of violence against Entertainment disturbing. It is regrettable that Mr Mfeka and the 'Council' have made these claims without proper information and without engaging '' and its producers," Pocock said in a statement.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, March 13 2018. 03:45 IST