|Created by||Richie Mehta|
|Country of origin||India|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||12 (list of episodes)|
|Cinematography||Johan Heurlin Aidt|
|Running time||36–64 minutes|
|Production companies||Golden Karavan|
Poor Man's Productions
|Picture format||1080p (HDTV)|
|Audio format||Dolby Digital|
|Original release||22 March 2019 –|
Delhi Crime is an Indian crime drama streaming television series written and directed by Richie Mehta. casting director Radhesh More and produced by Golden Karaven, Ivanhoe Productions, Film Karavan and Poor Man's Productions. The series star Shefali Shah, Rasika Dugal, Adil Hussain and Rajesh Tailang. The first season is set in the aftermath of the 2012 Delhi gang rape. The second season focuses on the Chaddi Baniyan Gang.
Filming for the first season began in Delhi in January 2018, and was completed within 62 days. The series covers the period from the incident happening to the final arrest of the suspects.
Delhi Crime's first two episodes were premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival in the Indie Episodic category. The series was released on Netflix on 22 March 2019. It received critical acclaim, with praise for its performances, writing, and depiction of the real-life case that inspired it. At the International Emmy Awards held in September 2020, Delhi Crime became the first Indian series to receive the award for Outstanding Drama Series. The show was renewed for a second season with the main cast returning. The second season premiered on 26 August 2022.
Delhi Crime is based on the 2012 Delhi gang rape case that took place in the neighbourhood of Munirka, in South Delhi. The series follows the story in the aftermath of the gang rape, where Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Vartika Chaturvedi is tasked to find the culprits responsible for the assaults and subsequent death of the female victim.
- Shefali Shah as DCP Vartika Chaturvedi IPS
- Rajesh Tailang as Inspector Bhupendra Singh
- Rasika Dugal as Neeti Singh IPS
- Adil Hussain as Kumar Vijay (CP)
- Denzil Smith as Vishal Chaturvedi, Vartika's husband
- Yashaswini Dayama as Chandni "Chandu" Chaturvedi, Vartika and Vishal's daughter
- Abhilasha Singh as Deepika, the victim of a brutal gang rape and murder
- Sanjay Bishnoi as Akash Kumar, Deepika's friend who was also a victim of the attack
- Vinod Sharawat as SHO Vinod Tiwari
- Anurag Arora as Sub-Inspector Jairaj Singh
- Gopal Datt as Sudhir Kumar
- Sidharth Bhardwaj as SHO Shubhash Gupta
- Aakash Dahiya as Devinder
- Avijit Dutt as Gururaj Dixit
- Jaya Bhattacharya as Vimla Bharadwaj (Season 1)
- Swati Bhatia as Ira
- Mridul Sharma as Jai Singh
- Ayush Sehgal as Arunesh
- Rhea Bedi as Smriti
- Gaurav Rana as SHO Rakesh Verma
- Govind Singh as Amar Singh
- Vipin Katyal as Arif
- Ashok Mehta as Lead Protester
- Danish Husain as Advocate Vineet Singh (Season 2)
- Tillotama Shome as Lata Solanki/Karishma (Season 2)
- Jatin Goswami (Season 2)
- Vyom Yadav (Season 2)
- Ankit Sharma (Season 2)
|1||7||March 22, 2019|
|2||5||August 26, 2022|
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date |
|1||1||"Episode 1"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|Two victims of a brutal crime are found naked in a ditch near the overpass, having been attacked on a city bus in Munirka. The man, Akash Kumar, was beaten, while his friend, Deepika, was raped and tortured with an iron rod, reportedly by six men including the driver and conductor. Delhi DCP Vartika Chaturvedi takes the crime personally and decides to handle the case herself. She enlists her most trusted officers within the otherwise bureaucratic and inefficient department, including Neeti Singh, a young and ambitious trainee. Vartika has her men sweep the city for white metro buses matching the description from the scene; Akash additionally describes there being a Shiva statue on the driver's dashboard. Two officers let one bus driver go after realizing he drives a school bus, failing to notice the Shiva statue on his dashboard.|
|2||2||"Episode 2"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|As the leads come in the investigating team focuses on the bus in which the crime was committed. When they find the bus they have their first perpetrator of the crime. Media leaks trigger backlash against police.|
|3||3||"Episode 3"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|The team finds blood in the bus. The bus driver Jai Singh confesses the crime and gives gory details of the crime. Another team goes to Mehrauli to find Jai Singh's brother. They catch Vikas and Brajesh through the suspects' neighbour and Amar from Rajasthan through his other brother.|
|4||4||"Episode 4"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|The team now knows the possible whereabouts of Alok the fifth perpetrator in Aurangabad, Bihar. Meanwhile, the high court takes up the public interest litigation on the crime as public protests continue. The sixth suspect is still elusive and hunt for him intensifies.|
|5||5||"Episode 5"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|The condition of the victim is not good. The DCP is facing public and media wrath as well as political fall out. A team sent to Naxalite infected area reaches the home of Alok. CM demands the resignation of Police Commissioner Vijay. The sixth suspect Sonu is still elusive.|
|6||6||"Episode 6"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|The police safeguard culprits from public anger. Two suspects attempt suicide inside cell. The team gone to Bihar travels to Jharkhand to in-laws home of Alok. The search for Sonu escalates. Male victim Akash is planning to appear on TV. Vartika advises him to avoid media at that stage of investigation. Meanwhile, Sonu is spotted in a bus going to Gurgaon.|
|7||7||"Episode 7"||Richie Mehta||Richie Mehta||22 March 2019|
|Sonu is caught on bus stand. He turns out to be a minor. The protest turns violent so PC orders lathi charge. The victim records her official statement in presence of a magistrate. Alok is apprehended from his home in Bihar. The government orders a judicial enquiry into conduct of police. Vartika is informed that Jai Singh has committed suicide in jail.|
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date |
|8||1||"Episode 1"||Tanuj Chopra||Mayank Tewari, Shubhra Swarup and Ensia Mirza||26 August 2022|
|When everything seems fine, Neena and DCP south district are left shocked when a new case about senior citizens enters the climax.|
|9||2||"Episode 2"||Tanuj Chopra||Vidit Tripathi and Ensia Mirza||26 August 2022|
|Commissioner suggests Vartika to call inspector Viren Chaddha after another murder shocks Delhi Police. Someone leaks the detail to the press and Vartika suspecting an insiders job ordered to probe the issue.|
|10||3||"Episode 3"||Tanuj Chopra||Shubhra Swarup and Ensia Mirza||26 August 2022|
|The team's investigation of two suspects leads to eye-opening findings. Amid pressure to appease the media and the public, Vartika faces a moral dilemma. She lets go of the two suspects as they are not guilty. The true killers are preparing for a new set of murders but call off the plan after observing a kid in the mix.|
|11||4||"Episode 4"||Tanuj Chopra||Mayank Tewari and Ensia Mirza||26 August 2022|
|Against a ticking clock, Vartika takes case in a new direction. Neeti finds a common link between the murders. Another tip-off leads to a suspect.|
|12||5||"Episode 5"||Tanuj Chopra||Shubhra Swarup and Mayank Tewari||26 August 2022|
|The team finds the suspects' hideout. But with Lata still missing, Vartika must determine if she's running or hiding - and finally uncover her story.|
Mehta decided to write a script based on the events during the 2012 Delhi gang rape and murder incident. He then conceived the idea of Delhi Crime during a conversation with Neeraj Kumar, the former Commissioner of the Delhi Police, who introduced him to the investigating team and provided access to several legal documents that were prepared as part of the investigation. Later on, Kumar asked Mehta if he would consider making a film on the case to which he denied. He then started reading the documents and was "amazed at the precision with which this case was solved, and so quickly." He also met the officers involved in the case and was "blown away by them." Mehta also sought permission from the victim's family. He said that films like The French Connection (1971) and Zodiac (2007) influenced his approach.
He modeled several portrayals of the cops based on his own observations. Mehta said that the making of the series was a "personally transformative journey" for him. He spoke to several police personnel involved in the case and tried "retracing the paths that the police took during the course of the investigation." It took Mehta six years to finish his research, adding that the writing part of the film which began in 2014 took place for more than four years, since he had to meet the cops and had to return to Canada to put his research work altogether, which took him more time. Mehta initially wanted to make it as a feature film, but as he continued the research, he realised that he could not fit the content in that length.
The casting director of the series is Mukesh Chhabra. Mehta decided to focus on actors from theatre background, without being influenced by the need to have recognised faces from Hindi film industry. Shefali Shah, Rajesh Tailang, Adil Hussain and Rasika Dugal were a part of the prominent cast members in the series, with whom Mehta worked in their first feature film Amal (2007). When Mehta spoke to Chhabra he stated that he had a little time to process the completion, so Mehta did not agree to cast star actors in the series, which unleashed Chhabra's imagination. He also added that the rise of streaming platforms had given much recognition to "some of the best acting talent in the world that comes from India".
The character of Vartika Chaturvedi (Shefali Shah) was based on Chhaya Sharma, the former deputy commissioner of police in Delhi. Mehta met Sharma, who was in the team who caught the perpetrators. They spoke for months as Mehta wanted her point of view in the crime. Shefali Shah agreed to don the character after Mehta's narration spanned for five minutes and also met Sharma for the preparation of the role. Tailang's character was an amalgamation of different investigating officers, but he spoke to one police officer and used him as reference point.
The series spans six days, covering the period between 16 December and 21 December 2012, from the incident to the final arrest. The film went on floors in Delhi in January 2018 after taking permission from the Delhi police and the victim's family, and was shot over the course of 62 days. Mehta decided not to show the rape on screen as he wanted "not to cross that line into exploitation." To make the experience more cathartic for the audience, director Richie Mehta revealed that they used handheld cameras on purpose. He says, "We wanted the audience like they are a part of our narrative and all that was happening on the sets. To make them feel more inclusive, we have shot those scenes with a handheld camera."
The shooting commenced in Delhi, mostly on the roads and no sets were used. Neeraj Kumar, for whom Mehta conceived the idea of the script stated that he advised the producers not to involve my successors who would neither approve of the project nor would they give any support, since the case was their predecessor's — a common failing observed in the police. Thus, the entire shoot was done almost without formal permissions.
Before the shoot, Kumar called the entire cast including Shefali Shah, to brief them about police hierarchy, the rank structure, body language of the police and the works so as to find the series to be an authentic depiction of the police on account of these briefings. Kumar has not visited the shooting spot, with the exception of one scene at the India Gate because his visits to the locales would have spread the word that he was getting Delhi Crime being made for his glorification.
The first two episodes of the series was premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival at the Indie Episodic Category, held on 23 January to 3 February 2019. Netflix acquired the streaming rights of the show later, and on 14 February, with the official announcement of their new original contents (including series and films) for their 2019 original slate, the makers confirmed their scheduled release of 22 March 2019. The official trailer of this series was unveiled on 11 March 2019. The show was released on Netflix on 22 March.
Delhi Crime season 2's official trailer was released on 8 August 2022.
Daniel Fienberg of The Hollywood Reporter called it "consistently different enough to be interesting." He also felt the police-procedural conventions felt "reasonably fresh and consistently engaging." Ben Travers of IndieWire wrote: "An expertly told, hard-to-watch true crime series, Delhi Crime Story won't be for everyone — but it won't let go of anyone who watches." Shubhra Gupta of The Indian Express wrote: "Where Delhi Crime scores is in the portrayal of a beleaguered police force, which is easy to point fingers at."
Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV called the series "grim, gritty and grounded in the everyday." He further wrote: "Delhi Crime is a knockout punch of a series: unsettling and enthralling by turns." Piyasree Dasgupta of HuffPost noted that the series "comes across as such an elaborate exercise to valorise the Delhi Police that it actually seems deeply insensitive." She also said that the "only people the show humanises are the police." Rahul Desai of Film Companion wrote: "It's the tiny infusions of well-informed opinion into what is essentially dramatic long-read reportage that make Delhi Crime one hell of a ride." Rohan Naahar of Hindustan Times called it: " gut-wrenching, stylishly directed, passionately performed, and most important, not at all exploitative." Avinash Ramachandran of The New Indian Express – Cinema Express in his review wrote: "Delhi Crime might be a glorification of the police force, but it is also a mirror to our society. It might absolve the Delhi police of its alleged dereliction of duties, but it is also a reminder that we vouched, and hoped, for a similar incident to never happen again."
Along with the story telling and the premise of the series, the cast also received widespread appreciation for their performances in the series. Priyanka Roy of The Telegraph said: "And while the rest of it is worth a watch, Shefali Shah is reason number one why you shouldn't give Delhi Crime a miss." Nandini Ramnath from Scroll wrote: " Rajesh Tailang, Anurag Arora, Adil Hussain, Jaya Bhattacharya, Gopal Dutt and Vinod Sharawat are among the numerous actors who display the same dedication to their craft as did their fictionalised selves to the investigation." Namrata Joshi from The Hindu said: "Tailang's control, poise and measured way plays out beautifully against Shah's dynamism to give us arguably the best on-screen buddy-cop team seen yet in India."
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Awards and nominations
|2019||Asian Academy Creative Awards||Best Drama Series||Delhi Crime||Won|||
|Best Actress in a Leading Role||Shefali Shah||Won|
|Best Original Programme by a Streamer/OTT||Delhi Crime||Won|
|Best Direction (Fiction)||Richie Mehta||Won|
|Best Original Screenplay||Nominated|
|Best Editing||Beverley Mills||Nominated|
|2019||iReel Awards||Best Drama Series||Delhi Crime||Won|||
|Best Actress -Drama||Shefali Shah||Won|
|Best Supporting Actor||Rajesh Tailang||Nominated|
|Best Writing -Drama||Richie Mehta||Won|
|2020||International Emmy Awards||Best Drama Series||Delhi Crime||Won|||
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