On Thursday, a cartoon mocking Indians, especially Hindus, for the acute oxygen crisis amidst the devastating second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country went viral on social media platforms.
The cartoon that was aggressively shared by the left-wing trolls on Twitter depicts Indians lying on the ground, gasping for oxygen. The cartoon, allegedly published by French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, took a dig at the Hindu deities, asking how they could not help their own people during the second wave of the pandemic.
The alleged Charlie Hebdo cartoon also accompanied a catchphrase in French that read, “33 million gods in India and not one capable of producing oxygen”.
The reference to “33 million gods” is nothing but an attempt to communalize the health crisis in the country by pointing fingers at Hindus, who worship multiple gods.
As usual, the left-wing ‘intellectuals’ and a few Hinduphobic social media users gleefully shared the so-called Charlie Hebdo cartoon widely on Twitter and cheered the French satirical magazine for making fun of Hindus amidst the ongoing health crisis in the country.
Congress leader Brijesh Kalappa was one of the first to share the alleged Charlie Hebdo cartoon that mocked Hindus. Attacking BJP, Kalappa asked what would the saffron party do, who, according to him, was celebrating the series of cartoons published by Charlie Hebdo depicting Islam in a poor light.
Salil Tripathi, another left-wing troll who has a rich history of peddling misinformation on social media platforms, put out an offensive tweet to ask whether the free speech champions from Hindutva, who according to him cheered Charlie Hebdo over its cartoons in the past, would defend the right of free expression now.
Congress IT cell worker Sumit Kashyap also celebrated the alleged Charlie Hebdo cartoon saying that the satirical magazine was doing great service to humanity by putting such vile cartoons.
As left-liberals and the usual anti-Hindu propagandists cheered Charlie Hebdo’s alleged cartoons, some social media users pointed out the hypocrisy of these ‘left-liberals’, who were just a few months back attacking the same French magazine for publishing cartoons that were allegedly hurtful for Muslims.
However, with certain cartoons mocking Hindus and their deities began to make rounds on the internet, the left-liberals have now taken a complete u-turn to cheer the same publication for allegedly putting content that mocks Hindus traditions.
Did Charlie Hebdo publish an offensive cartoon against Hindus? What we know so far
Even as the left-liberals continue to tweet these Charlie Hebdo cartoons with all vigour, some social media users claimned that the French satirical magazine may have nothing to do with the above cartoon.
Interestingly, the cartoon that is being attributed to Charlie Hebdo by the left-liberals does not even feature anywhere on Charlie Hebdo’s official Twitter account. The cartoon also does not even find a place on their English version of the website.
Twitter user Nayanika pointed it out.
The Charlie Hebdo cartoon isn’t on the TL. They don’t delete their tweets. It’s not on their website. I found one on Meghan very offensive but it’s still there. I’m asking, did they actually do it or did anti-Hindu trolls do it?— Nayanika (@nayanikaaa) May 13, 2021
In fact, Charlie Hebdo has published a few other stories on India, especially over the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. In a report published on April 22 this year, the French satirical magazine has questioned the Indian government’s Covid-19 strategy. The French magazine had a satirical take on the entire crisis and had published a couple of caricatures on the same.
Here are the cartoons published by Charlie Hebdo on the second wave of the pandemic, featuring MK Gandhi and Mughal monument Taj Mahal.
So where did the so-called Charlie Hebdo cartoon originate in the first place?
Amid the confusion over whether the cartoon was actually made by Charlie Hebdo or it was made by someone else, we can now confirm that it was actually made and published by the well-known magazine. The same cartoon was posted by the official Facebook account of Charlie Hebdo on 11th May.
Although the cartoon can’t be found on the English version of the website, it is there on the original French version. The cartoon was drawn by Laurent “Riss” Sourisseau, the publishing director and majority owner of the magazine. The cartoon was published without any accompanying text, and that is why it does not turn up in search results. For this reason, people had assumed that the cartoon was not made by Charlie Hebdo. In fact, the cartoon is displayed in the page of Riss, where creations by him are published.
Note: This report has been updated with new information