What started out as a joke by Mumbai-based comedian Tanmay Bhat has miserably backfired with Twitterverse, Bollywood celebs, politicians and the general public up-in-arms against him for 'insulting' Bharat Ratna awardees Sachin Tendulkar and Lata Mangeshkar.
Now, the Mumbai police has initiated a probe on a complaint against Bhat's video The video that has a mock conversation between Sachin Tendulkar and Lata Mangeshkar has sparked a massive outrage with the Shiv Sena, BJP and MNS on Monday demanding action against him and AIB.
The inquiry is underway against Bhat on a complaint by Raj Thackeray's Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), which has also threatened to beat him up. (Read more)
The video sees the comedian superimposing the faces of cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar and musical legend Lata Mangeshkar using Snapchat's unique face-swap feature. The 'face-swapped’ Sachin Tendulkar and Lata Mangeshkar are seen arguing oveer whether Virat Kohli is better than the Master Blaster. Tanmay mimics both jibes the 86-year-old melody queen and the 43-year-old cricketing legend and also throws Vinod Kambli into the mix for good measure.
Bollywood has also reacted sharply to the comedian's portrayal of the music and cricket icons with many actors slamming the video made by a member of online comedy group AIB, saying it is in poor taste. Titled 'Sachin v/s Lata Civil War', Tanmay, in a video posted on Facebook on May 26, took jibes at the 86-year-old melody queen and the 43-year-old cricketing legend.
Taking strong exception to the video, the Shiv Sena asked Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to take stringent action against AIB and Bhat for allegedly seeking to vitiate social harmony by mocking the national legends.
Sena leader Neelam Gorhe wrote to Fadnavis seeking action against those behind the video which she said was made by people with 'deranged mentality'. "Such people try to misuse the popularity of icons like Sachin and Lata tai for their own publicity," said Gorhe. "I have also written to Mumbai Police Commissioner seeking action against Tanmay Bhat and AIB," she said.
Mumbai BJP president Ashish Shelar said he has spoken to the Police Commissioner and sought action against Bhat and AIB.
In its complaint, MNS demanded that the video uploaded by him be removed immediately. DCP (Operations) Sangramsingh Nishandar said the inquiry is being conducted by special branch of the city police.
The inquiry was initiated after Shelar complained about the issue to city Police Chief Datta Padsalgikar.
Seeing nothing wrong with the comedy video, Bhat in a statement asked those viewers who liked it to email their views to him at a particular ID, stating what they liked.
In a couple of tweets, which he deleted later, the comedian even reached out to his detractors. "Roast wale din yaad aa gaye by god" (It reminds me of our AIB roast days). "Bharat mata ki jai", he said.
Bhat started trending on Twitter with the social media slamming the comedian for his 'tasteless' jokes.
Censor Board member Ashoke Pandit tweeted...
Author Chetan Bhagat wrote...
You cannot arrest people for making jokes. Even if the jokes are bad. Really.— Chetan Bhagat (@chetan_bhagat) May 30, 2016
To speak about any woman wth such indignity, is a sin. & this is Lata Mangeshkar. Hope Karma doesn't do d same to their own Mothers. Prayers— Sonu Nigam (@sonunigam) May 29, 2016
Music composer Vishal Dadlani, of Vishal-Shekhar fame, said the 'glory' of both, Tendulkar and Mangeshkar, will not be 'lessened' by a 'rude' joke. "It's OK, it's all good. Sachin is a legend and Lata Mangeshkar is a Goddess. Their glory isn't gonna be lessened by a rude joke. Calm down!," he tweeted.
AIB is known for its irreverent comedy and was caught in a massive controversy over an expletive-laden roast of actors Ranveer Singh and Arjun Kapoor and filmmaker Karan Johar in December, 2014.
-With agency inputs
This is the video which has sparked a major controversy