Shiv Panditt-Tridha Choudhury and Hrishita Bhatt-Arunoday Singh play two married couples on the show.
The Chargesheet – Innocent or guilty?
Cast: Arunoday Singh, Sikandar Kher, Satish Kaushik, Shiv Panditt, Tridha Choudhury, Hrishita Bhatt
Creator: Shashant Shah
Actor Sikander Kher, who plays a CBI officer on the show, says at a very important juncture “We have been fooled”. You as a member of audience heartily agree; perhaps the only time you do. The Chargesheet: Innocent or Guilty? appears to be a murder mystery where logic dies a gory death and the only mystery that needs to be unravelled is why it was ever made. In a sea of excellent whodunits on OTT platforms, this is an unnecessary effort.
Watch The Chargesheet: Innocent or Guilty? trailer [embedded content]
The show begins with the gruesome and heart-wrenching murder of a National-level table tennis player Shiraz Malik. The rest of the episodes show how the police and the court fail to reach a decision, just like the makers fail to drive you towards a satisfying conclusion, offering a random list of events instead.
A simple love triangle that may or may not be inspired by a real-life event — The Chargesheet hinges on an extramarital affair between the slain tennis player’s wife and a powerful politician with royal roots. While it doesn’t need Sherlock to deduce that this led to the murder, you keep on hoping for more given the talent involved — Sikander, Arunoday Singh, Hrishita Bhatt, Satish Kaushik and Shakti Anand. The makers, meanwhile, fail to do justice to even the plain vanilla plot.
Sikander Kher (second from left) in a still from The Chargesheet: Innocent or Guilty?
The show claims it is not inspired by real events but the resemblance with the murder of badminton player Syed Modi in 1988 is stark. While that murder shook the country and is discussed even today, the show needed to incorporate one major change in the story: a conclusion.
The futility of the effort makes you cringe; just like the lawyer of the dead man who has all the evidence but fails to prove anything in the court. From there, it becomes a classroom session on how Indian judiciary works and is as boring as that sounds.
Arunoday Singh plays a powerful politician and a former royal in The Chargesheet: Innocent or Guilty?
Satish Kaushik adds some respite with his overconfident portrayal of a lawyer with a constant cold who can even prove a goat guilty of killing a lion. Hrishita looks interesting as a pallu-clad royal but is wasted due to a badly written part. It is questionable why Shakti Anand is wasted in a minuscule part.
A few colourless comments by Sikander’s subordinate look like a forced attempt to add some humour but in vain. The forever silent brother of the late sportsman, who watches the court proceedings with moist eyes leaves the viewer with a similar expression. Neither he nor the viewer gets his due.
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