Comedy in India: Sensitive and Offended Indians

This might be my third or fourth post on censorship on MAM. At MAM, we are fairly clearly that art needs no censorship and we have expressed our support to Kamal Hassan and Vijay via our site.

In a country like ours the problem is everyone wants to laugh at others, but not at themselves. The reason being we are insecure pricks. We do not feel ashamed to laugh at jokes which makes fun of brown or black colour, even though most Indians are brown themselves. 

Heck, we know a singer has been apologising to a Bollywood star, because the star could not take a comment sportively and move on.  Now we all know that we are currently facing one of the worst droughts in recent times, growing unemployment, our farmers are committing suicide and yet none of these bothers us, what boils our blood is a Snapchat video.

Now what sensible people would do is ignore the video or  comment on why the art (Snapchat Video) does not work for them or make a counter video. But then when a situation like this comes along we see that there aren’t too many sensible people around. Now we have Bollywood actors tweeting, stars who are tongue tied usually have advice to give to lesser mortals.

Like Anupam Kher first stressed that he is a 9 times comedy actor award winner, now I do not know which awards is he referring to considering we have them like a dime a dozen. Did any one appoint Anupam as minister of humour to decide what humour is or not?

Riteish was shocked and now I am considering homophobic jokes in Kya Cool Hai Hum were pretty normal, since we are one of the few nations which refuse to even debate on the illegality of 377 A.

Celina went one step ahead, saying Tanmay Bhatt should apologize, because she was not amused. Neither were we amused when one of her films Jawani Diwani emphasized that if you sleep with someone the girl needs to marry that guy.

I understand people may like some works of art, while some may not like it for various reasons which includes our personal preferences and our exposure.

But does that mean we have right a to shut down an artist, ask him to apologise just because it does not suit our taste? Who are these people in the first place, the self-appointed guardians of humour or culture who will decide what an artist should create or what people should watch.

The truth is that the video has been enjoyed by more people than by those who are outraged by it. The proof of that is Tanmay’s Snapchat or Twitter followers are still there, or I may be wrong if most of these followers are from a xenophobic party which is waiting for his next video so that they can file an FIR against him, meanwhile farmers be damned.

The reaction to the video has been downright nasty, while people claim that they are fans of icons and they are disturbed by the video which in the first place no one is forced to watch unlike Swatch Bharat Cess, which all of us have to pay without a choice. All comments have been targeting the physicality of Tanmay, in fact that is my greatest fear,if we an ban artist like Tanmay, we would end up with comedians who only to know poke fun at physicality of people.

Humour is one of the greatest virtues in a successful democracy and we need to safeguard it.

In the end, all I have to say if anything does not entertain you, ignore it. If you want to get offended, go ahead get offended and get angry at your own sense of insecurity and your inability to laugh at a  joke.

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13 thoughts on “Comedy in India: Sensitive and Offended Indians

  1. A stand up comic friend of mine recently told me that SC has passed a judgement that we can’t make jokes on “National Icons”. It is more scary when Law of the State decides what’s funny and what’s not. Even while performing he had to keep alert that no one was recording the act on mobile since there were digs taken at Gandhi & Nehru. So much for a country that once boasted of Birbals & Tenali Ramans who would use humour as a weapon to even tell their kings when they made mistakes.

    • Abhishek,
      I am not aware of such judgement, but will check. Well sarcasm, sense of humour and common sense is something India needs much more than rest of the world.

  2. An artist can say an old lady to die…he can say that her face is like some one has kept her in water for 8 days….he can scold any one in the name of fun and humour…but no body should ask(have the right) him to apologize if they feel that what he did is not right……..wah……sense of humour ki jaiiiii…..hypocrisy ki jaiii…. ………..nobody is against freedom of speech…we are against freedom to insult…both are different……here in this video…this guy is making fun…if i have to put it in a right way…insulting two people….and we have the right to get offended..as sachin does not think about kohli the way he was shown in the video…he dont scold lataji as shown in the video…..if tanmay has so much sense of humour….and can laugh at himself…he can.make a video on himself using the words lik ma*****, be**** and release it on social media, nobody asks for apologies. Making an insult video on two legends and expecting no criticism…if some one critices…telling them that they have no sense of humour……lolllll.

    • Chaitanya, You have all the right to criticise a work of art and all the right to say the video is in bad taste, but threatening an artist because you did not like his work of art is silly and downright violent. As you have mentioned “as sachin does not think about kohli the way he was shown in the video” nobody in right mind would think that video is real so either you like the work or not.We can ignore the work, remember a bad artist will eventually find no takers in market.

  3. I want to add one last thing….Here the problem is the kind of disgusting language which is used and been put in their mouths as if they are saying it. At this point it it does not stay as a joke

    • There is nothing disgusting about any language, every word has it’s use.If abuses were bad, it would not have been part of human language for so many years.

      • If something has been part of human race for years, it does not mean that it is good, there are lot of bad things which have been part of us….

  4. Mr Chaitanya….firstly it is none of your business to get offended here…Also I think you need to be more worried about who says what about you, your family and your loved ones…and believe me there must be a lot and even if you miraculously overheard each and every gossip revolving around you, you wouldn’t be able to shit about it…so worry about that and then abut your icons….Icons don’t diminish in value just because someone decides to make a few jokes about them…people talk ill about others all the time..some post it publicly…don’t see how it can affect anyone..it’s their view, their opinion, their piss…no one is forcing you to drink it……You can just ignore…ignore beta ignore…a very valuable lesson you must learn…remember your icons have made all the moolah they and you haven’t so concentrate on that and ensure that people aren’t talking shit about you because unlike them it may actually affect you…take a chill pill and worry about yourself…..rest is none of your business…no offense here!

    • You are asking me to take a chill pill and ignore things…..but instead of following your mantra, you wrote a 10 line comment advising me on what topic i should worry and on what things i should concentrate……. very funny…..follow your mantra….ignore my comments buddy…take a chill pill….no offense here!

  5. i would say that an artist has freedom to express but freedom to insult someone isn’t appropriate. Forget That its related to legends like Sachin and Lata, even if its against any common man then anyone has right to raise voice against it. Being an artist doesn’t give anyone freedom to insult anyone. How will it feel when in the name of art someone insult your parents/sister. Think about it.

    • How can any work of art be an insult, yes if anyone can make fun of me, my parents, brother or sister for the record.

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