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Change soap opera’s Hitler name, ADL asks Indian network

JTA

November 22, 2011 | 5:33 pm

The Anti-Defamation League has called on an Indian television network to change the name of a new soap opera with Hitler in the title.

“Hitler Didi” airs five days a week on Zee TV, a division of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited, based in Mumbai. After receiving numerous complaints about the title and its use in online promotional materials and videos, ADL last week wrote network executives with a request to change the name to one “not freighted with the taint of the Nazi Holocaust.”

“Hitler Didi,” which translates to “Auntie Hitler,” refers to the lead character, a young woman known in her locality as a strict disciplinarian who takes a no-nonsense attitude with her family.

“Let’s preserve the name ‘Hitler’ as a villain of incomparable evil and not trivialize his legacy or the Holocaust with a serial TV title,” the ADL wrote in a letter to Zee Entertainment’s managing editor and CEO, Punit Goenka, and chairman, Subhash Chandra. “We strongly urge you to reconsider the choice of title and rename your show.”

Abraham Foxman, the ADL’s national director and a Holocaust survivor, said “The name Hitler doesn’t belong in the title of a soap opera, and we think the producers of this program have made a terrible error in judgment that can only be remedied with a title change.”

The program, starring the Indian actress Rati Pandey, premiered Nov. 7 on Zee TV in India and also is being carried on the network’s affiliates in other countries, including the United States.

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