Propagandist masquerading as ‘standup comedian’, Kunal Kamra yesterday posted on Twitter a picture of himself presenting the foul-mouthed Shiv-Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut with a miniature JCB, a vehicle that is used for construction and demolition purposes.
Best podcast shoot ever 🙏🙏🙏 pic.twitter.com/FJz9WUxs4k— Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) October 11, 2020
Raut was a guest on Kunal Kamra’s podcast. The so-called comedian shared the picture of the two with the message: “Best podcast shoot ever”. Kamra was seen holding a toy bulldozer with Raut, taking a dig at actor Kangana Ranaut whose office was demolished by the BMC, which is controlled by Shiv Sena.
Ranaut had made critical remarks against the Shiv Sena’s government in Maharashtra after Azaadi posters and graffitis were seen on the streets of Mumbai. ‘The Queen’ actor had then likened Mumbai to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, drawing the fury of Shiv Sena, particularly Sanjay Raut, who was embroiled in a war of words with the actor and had called her “haramkhor” for airing her views. He later even coined a new definition of the expletive to defend his remarks. Amidst the controversy, BMC authorities showed unusual alacrity to raze down the actor’s Bandra office, citing alleged violations.
Kunal Kamra takes a dig at the demolition of Kangana Ranaut’s office
Not only did Kamra provide his platform for a politician who abused a woman and later defended his remarks, but he also normalised the abusive behaviour of the Shiv Sena leader and gloated over the felling of Kangana’s office in Mumbai which has been described by many as an act of vendetta by the Maharashtra government.
Ranaut today shared the picture of Kunal Kamra with Sanjay Raut on Twitter, saying that Mumbai witnessed a citywide power failure but the government was preoccupied with her. Kamra promptly responded back, making a derisive comment on Ranaut’s tweet.
Ma’am bijli gayi idhar par fuse aapka kyon udd raha hai 😂😂😂 https://t.co/uevSsL7X7n— Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) October 12, 2020
Kamra’s tweet mocking Kangana’s misfortune reveals that the so-called comedian had no qualms with a political party exploiting its power to teach a dissident a lesson by bulldozing his or her place. His tweet, in fact, betrays his approval of the use of intimidation tactics by Shiv Sena to silence its critics.
It is also pertinent to note here that Shiv Sena has been among the forefront of the political parties who have not shied away from indulging in violence and vandalism to browbeat its detractors and even ‘stand-up comedians’ who are found making disparaging remarks against its politicians, cultural icons and other sensitive issues. Recently, Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik threatened legal action against comedian Agrima Joshua for her tasteless remarks against Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
As the controversy erupted and Joshua found herself in hot water, the ‘stand-up comedian’ abjectly and profusely apologised to the Maha Vikas Aghadi government in the state, while ensuring that he portrays the threats received by her from Shiv Sena supporters as those coming from the BJP men. In a separate incident, Shiv Sena workers had vandalised the shop of two individuals in Maharashtra’s Yavatmal because they dared to criticise Rahul Gandhi, Uddhav Thackeray and Sharad Pawar.
Woke comedians’ insincere support to ‘Speaking Truth to power’
However, none of these incidents elicits condemnation by these so-called bunch of ‘woke’ comedian. Instead, they make a beeline to secure Shiv Sena’s support and mount an attack against the BJP government. The excesses meted out by the regional political parties do not excite the so-called woke brigade. They turn a blind eye to the injustices carried out by the regional parties. Their commitment to the lofty ideal of ‘Speaking Truth to Power’ is exercised selectively, only when it comes to the BJP central and state governments. It is for this reason that these stand-up comedians not only give a free pass to the non-BJP governments but also defend and normalise their reign of terror and intimidation.
It can be safely assumed that Kamra has perceived Shiv Sena as its ally against the central government. Therefore, far from calling out their misconduct and immoral behaviour, he has revelled in mocking Kangana Ranaut over it. The fact that Kangana is an overt and unapologetic admirer of PM Modi and the BJP government at the centre only pushed Kamra to unrepentantly indulge in schadenfreude. For ‘woke’ comedians like Kunal Kamra, in their pursuit to delegitimise and discredit the Modi government and its supporters, such minor compromises over one’s moral principles and ideals and supporting violence and vandalism is a reasonable bargain.