BJP has come up with an exceptionally novel and ingenious cultural solution to almost all of the country’s problems, ‘if we dislike it, we ban it’. From banning of pornography, beef, to dance bars, to now getting offended by Tanmay bhat’s snap chat video, the BJP has taken offence to all things imaginable. As things stand, pretty much anything that doesn’t feature in the BJP legislators’ kitchens, their bedrooms or their very limited imagination is given to a ban.
The comic Tanmay Bhat’s video poking fun at Sachin Tendulkar and Lata Mangeshkar went viral on Twitter causing immediate backlash and reaction. As soon as it was posted, the otherwise dead Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) sprang into action by filing a complaint with the Mumbai Police. BJP legislator Ashish Shelar met the police commissioner to register a non-cognizable offence under Section 500 of the IPC against Bhat. So the age old political weapon used to silence opponents and detractors alike: defamation.
While no amount of viral videos can secure the political future of MNS, BJP seems to be making steady profits off of its business empire of banning ideas and artistic expression. It is possible that the BJP’s flagship Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is meant to wipe everything clean off of the BJP brand of “offensive”. Notably, just like hypocrisy, hatred and prejudice, being offended still remains largely an emotion, which does not have any legal or constitutional mandate!