India is a paradise for people who get offended. Every other day, there is a group of people who get offended by anything and everything. It goes well with the line from a popular post, “I may not agree with you, but I will defend to the death my right to get offended. How dare you? Baahar mil.”
This has been proven true from the past incidents, where people have taken offence over frivolous and harmless jokes. They have even gone to the point of filing FIRs. Starting from Tanmay Bhat’s Snapchat post, Anand Mahindra’s joke on a movie scene, and actress Parvathy’s comment on a film, the list goes on and on.
Every time a takes offence at something I always share the clip from ‘I am Offended‘ by Jaideep Varma. The documentary brings forth the plight of those who spend their lives walking the tightrope of making people laugh, knowing very well that they might be toppled by the same laughing crowd. The documentary begins with the lines, “We don’t have it. We just don’t have it – a sense of humour.”
No one can say anything against your favourite celebrity, cricketer or even the political party you support. In such cases, people come to the battlefield like an army ready to attack the other person, and tear them down. Sometimes, if it’s about a particular political ideology, but the reactions go to the extent of issuing rape threats or inviting people to do the same. Of course, it goes without saying that one of the best ways is to ‘attack’ a woman. One of the most prominent examples here is that of Rana Ayyub.
Really, how democratic is India, especially where free speech is concerned? Does it depend on a person’s good fortune on a given day? One does not know when they might get arrested for offending someone. And the police and law enforcement agencies have, of late, become more involved in lodging FIRs and arresting people for their satirical social media posts against political leaders or celebrities. This, at the cost of ensuring the safety of women. This trend keeps happening in India and is likely to continue. Someone conveys a trivial insult that annoys only a few – and the spineless police force starts framing charges.
Of course, India is a ‘democratic and secular’ country. People of all religion have all the right to file a case against an artist, writer or celebrity for ‘hurting their religious sentiments’. And of course, India is ‘democratic’ enough! If you are going to say that people would have been jailed, if they had done the same in the US or the UK, then you are sorely mistaken. Their comedians don’t get arrested for making a joke against the queen or the President. We are better that way, right?
People who get offended all too often should make sense of this video by AIB, where a bunch of guys start a group called ‘Chill group’.
If India is a paradise for those who take offence, it’s a bad place for the artists and creative folks. Doesn’t all this show the immaturity and insecurities of the Indian society which get offended for every trivial thing?
Featured image used for representative purposes only.