In another case of outrage over ‘hurting sentiments’, a BJP lawyer filed complaint against comedian Vir Das for his ‘two Indias’ monologue. The FIR was filed by BJP advisor Advocate Ashutosh Dubey for “defaming and spoiling the image of India in the USA”. The Mumbai based advocate further claimed that Das willfully “spelled inciting & derogatory statements against India, Indian women & the PM of India”. The FIR was filed after a clip of Das’ recent show I Come from Two India’s was uploaded on YouTube. The show was performed in Washington DC, at the prestigious Kennedy Centre auditorium.

Interestingly enough, Das’s monologue received polarizing reactions from netizens, influencers and politicians. While some claimed that Das was indeed attempting to hurt the cultural sentiments of Indians, others claimed that Das gave a hard-hitting satirical take on the ongoing socio-political landscape of India. The monologue has received over 8.1 lakh views on YouTube so far.

Background

If there has been a phenomenon rampant which questions the idea of free speech in India, it is “purposeful outrage”. Every few weeks, an ad campaign, a film, an artist, or a standup comedian is trolled for “hurting religious and cultural sentiments” of Indians. Who are these Indians, one may ask. These Indians are part of an army on Twitter, armed with anonymity.

So what is ‘purposeful outrage’? It’s when outrage over a piece of work leads to the work being taken down, with the purpose of curbing free speech and fueling the common man with hatred.

In another testament to purposeful outrage, comedian Vir Das is now facing the heat for calling out certain eccentricities of India.


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The Facts of the Matter

Comedian Vir Das is facing the heat of thousands of outraged Indians over his recent YouTube clip. The actor shared a clip of his show I Come from Two Indias which he performed at the Kennedy Centre, Washington DC. The comedian uploaded an almost 7-minute in which he is calling out the two sides of India that functions in parallel.

The clip has evoked polarizing reactions from the netizens. Meanwhile, 2 FIRs have already been filed against the comedian. One FIR was filed by Advocate Ashutosh Dubey, a BJP legal advisor.


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What Was Vir Das’s “Two Indias” Monologue About?

In the monologue, Das shares how he comes from two India’s – one where women are worshiped, and other where women are gangraped. Similarly, draws simple but astute parallels, one of which was him saying he comes where children are asked to wear masks, while leaders hug without masks. He adds that he comes from a country where “we take pride over being vegetarians, yet run over famers”, an obvious remark about the farmer’s protest and its consequences.

Interestingly, most people who are outraged by the video are sharing just a 40 second edited snippet of the clip. It should be noted that later in the same monologue, Das says that he is in the USA representing a great people. “Great people, who built a great thing that is turning into a memory.”


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Netizens Slam Vir Das for His Monologue

After the video went viral, netizens across India are slamming Vir Das. Some are claiming that Das must be arrested for tarnishing India’s image in USA, while others are claiming that Das is misusing his freedom of speech.

Hansal Mehta, Shashi Tharoor, Kapil Sibal Laud Vir Das

While netizens are slamming Das left and right, prominent netizens including Hansal Mehta, Shashi Tharoor and many others have backed Vir Das for his satirical take on the current Indian socio-political climate.

“Do Not Be Fooled By Edited Snippets”

After receiving flak and heat by triggered Indians, Das issued a statement in which he asked people to “not be fooled by edited snippets”. “The video appeals for us to never forget that we are great. To never stop focusing on what makes us great. It ends in a gigantic patriotic round of applause for a country we all love, believe in and are proud of,” his statement read.