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‘Shaktimaan’ survives hoax

Tempers flare over news agency reports

BOMBAY — National network Doordarshan (DD) yanked episodes of its popular series “Shaktimaan” (an Indianized “Superman”) after news agency UNI reported cases of kids torching themselves in hopes of a Shaktimaan rescue.

The program’s producer and star Mukesh Khanna sued UNI after the detective agency he hired proved the news reports false.

Khanna blames rivals for the planted stories. UNI has since apologized, and DD intends to continue the series, now into 60 of its contracted 104 episodes.

“Shaktimaan” is drawing an increasing number of kids, who stay up to watch it in its 10:30 p.m. timeslot.

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