SC/ST who? How lower-castes are missing from Indian web series

A case study conducted by a popular Instagram page has revealed some interesting findings on account of web series produced in India.

The post shared by Andheri West Sh*t Posting is a division of lead character surnames from 50 web shows like ‘The Family Man’, ‘Mirzapur’, ‘Sacred Games’, and ‘Paatal Lok’ among others.

It states that the surnames were identified based on Central Government's List of OBCs STs and SCs.

The research revealed that 56.78% of the total characters (67 out of 111) were named after Upper Caste surnames when their population is 30.8% in India according to NSSO 2004 (Overrepresentation by +184.35%).

Meanwhile, 5.08% of the total characters (Only 6 out of 111) were named after Lower Caste surnames when their population is 69.3% in India according to NSSO 2004 (Underrepresentation by -92.67%).

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Last weekend I casually wanted to find out how much is the representation of lower caste surnames (SC+ST+OBC) in Indian long-form content (like YT series, Web series, etc.). So I did this amateur 'research' on about 50 most famous Indian web / long format shows to get a rough number. Here are the findings: From 50 most famous long-form web series/shows made in India, 111 main characters were identified (excluding family members of main lead for family genre shows because they share the same surname unless there's a series where their surname is different, eg. What The Folks) and their surnames were identifies based on Central Government's List of OBCs STs and SCs. (Characters with just first names or similar surnames were put in the cant's say group that is highlighted in yellow, for eg. Sharma is used by Brahmins & also Naayi and Carpenter community, so didn't include them in any). Based on that research: 56.78% of the total characters (67 out of 111) were named after Upper Caste surnames when their population is 30.8% in India according to NSSO 2004 (Overrepresentation by +184.35%) 5.08% of the total characters (Only 6 out of 111) were named after Lower Caste surnames when their population is 69.3% in India according to NSSO 2004 (Underrepresentation by -92.67%) Link to the excel sheet in the facebook post: (open to feedback and any kind of error you may spot in the document)

A post shared by Andheri West Shit Posting (@andheriwestshitposting) on

The post received a reply from ‘Band Baaja Baaraat’ producer Nikhil Taneja. The film starred Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma.

Reacting to the representation of caste he said, “This is great work. I produced Bang Baaja Baaraat back in 2015 and while we tried to be representative in gender and sexuality across the shows, we made at YFilms both on and off screen, we certainly could have done a lot better in the character representations on screen. Going to do better and be conscious of this now, thank you.”

(To download our E-paper please click here. The publishers permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

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