Television and film actor Shruti Ulfat and three other co-stars have been arrested for posting pictures with an endangered cobra on social media a month ago.
Shruti Ulfat posing with an Indian Spectacled Cobra DNA reports that the actor had posted a picture with an Indian Spectacled Cobra last year , allegedly as a promotional tool for her television series Nagarjuna – Ek Yoddha. The cobra is protected under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and it is an offence to capture and post pictures and videos with it. several animal activists filed a complaint against Ulfat in the Thane Forest Department. The officials of the department demanded the video with the cobra from Ulfat, her co-actor Pearl Puri and two producers, Utkarsh Bali and Nitin Solanki. The accused had claimed that the cobra was a product of the Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI). After the report of the Kalina forensic lab suggested otherwise, the department arrested the four accused. Santosh Kank, Range Forest officer, said , “We have arrested actress Shruti Ulfat along with 3 others for posing with a cobra and posting the images and videos online. They were produced before the Borivali court and have been kept in one-day custody of the Thane range. A CD with the images and videos was sent to the forensic lab and it has been proved that a live snake was used for shooting purposes.” Kank also added that they are now further probing the matter in order to find out who supplied the cobra to the producers and arrest those miscreants as well. However, Ulfat has rubbished the rumours of her arrest and has clarified her stand to the daily. “Since I had posted a video with the cobra on my Instagram account, they (forest department officials) asked me to come to give the statement.
The department officers want to stop this illegal trafficking and I being a responsible citizen will do everything to help them out. Also, my name has been portrayed on a larger scale because I am an actress. Otherwise, it wasn’t my fault at all.” She went on to say that the makers brought a real cobra on the sets situated near Film City, Gurgaon in order to celebrate 100 episodes of the show. However, the electronic media exposed the celebration to the entire world which is where the animal welfare NGOs took notice of the offense. Ulfat clarified that she did not do any crime and hence there was no question of getting arrested, Latest reports said the actor has been released on bail but she cannot travel abroad without informing the court and has to remain present whenever asked by the forest department. This snake issue has turned in such a big issue. We don’t know about Ulfat but the snake has definitely become popular. Moreover , as it was related to an actress , the news caught more fire.
This case has definitely increased the TRP of the show and earned alot of attention to the four people involved.
BY: Ushma Agnihotri