New Delhi: An online campaign to ban on 5,000-odd websites that carry Santa-Banta jokes at the cost of the Sikh community has received massive support, the initiators of the campaign have said.
A global online petition started by Delhi Sikh community on change.org website demanding ban on Sikh jokes ridiculing the community has gone viral and gained momentum worldwide. This petition has more than 27,000 signatures online and around 45,000 signatures offline.
"We expect to have 1,00,000 signatures by the end of December 2015," said Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) president Manjit Singh G.K. on Sunday.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was among those who supported the cause as he signed the petition during his visit to Gurdwara Rakabganj during Guru Nanak Jayanti on November 28.
The DSGMC chief said the online petition has had such positive impact that two Jalandhar-based Sikh comedians - Gurpreet Singh and Prabhpreet Singh - who have been performing under the names of Santa and Banta for the last 18 years, have announced they are changing their stage names and will now be known as Shugli (Gurpreet) and Jugli (Prabhpreet).
The petition seeks ban on such joke sites which portray Sikhs as "unintelligent", "foolish" and "naive", making them an easy target for ridicule and racial abuse, said Manjit Singh.
The DSGMC has started the campaign in all gurdwaras in the national capital, requesting devotees to sign the online petition. The campaign has also been launched for school children studying in the 18 Guru Harikrishan Public Schools here.