It’s All Good. Nothing To See Here. Move On Now.

16th May, 2014 will go down in history as the day India gifted a whopping majority to its new and controversial Prime Minister, Arnab Goswami. If the result wasn’t proof enough of a Modi wave, consider the following true story: A couple in Indore named their twin boys — born on 16th May — ‘Narendra’ and ‘Modi’. (This was a source of great joy for them, but not so much for their older triplets, Lal, Krishna and Advani.)

But the most pressing question here is, do people still name their babies Narendra? On the plus side, that’s one less kid named Aryan, which lowers the douchebag count by one. But on the other hand, you just know that all the other kids are going to call him Uncle all through school, until he graduates and becomes a retired LIC agent.

He’ll still have it better than his brother, whose first name is also a last name. It’s like naming your kid Gupta Sharma. Why would you do that? Also, if the kids start flunking school, do they get renamed to ‘Dammit’ and ‘Rahul’?

The problem is that even though the results are clear, a certain section of alarmist, book-reading liberals are harping on about their concern for free speech. It’s ridiculous. Why would you think that free speech is under threat? Just because Modi’s BJP will rule the roost in huge numbers, while the opposition wields all the influence of a potato? That’s insane, and it’s exactly what the ISI wants you to believe. Let me assure you that dissent and political humour are going to flourish in the years to come. In fact, I’m going to prove it to you with the following anti-establishment jokes:

Q. Why did Modi cross the road?
A. Because Congress is corrupt.

Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Modi who?
Pappu hai hai!

Q. How many Modis does it take to change a lightbulb?
A. Sagarika is a Bangladeshi bai.

Modi walks into a bar. And raises it.

You see what I mean? There’s no problem at all. Nope.

And yet, the critics persist. One recent report that got their Fabindia panties in a bunch involved the arts and culture cell of the BJP. Apparently they’re looking to actively develop and support films that showcase traditional Indian values, which, as it turns out, is not just shots of flowers grinding against each other. The film they cited as an example was DDLJ, which promotes the great Indian custom of going halfway across the world to infiltrate the wedding of a girl you once hung out with for a week.

DDLJ also showcases the glorious Indian tradition of fixing a match for your daughter when she’s just a baby, and then uprooting her from a lifetime in suburban London so that she can marry a lecherous stranger and live in a village in India, because people in London are bad and they drink beer.

It also features the classic ‘Hey Simran, I kinda date-raped you when you were drunk lololol this is so funny why aren’t you laughing oh crap I was just kidding’ scene, wherein we learn that Raj Malhotra would never do something like that, not because of the depravity of the act, but because of his (drumrolllll) Indianness.

That, my friends, is the power of culture. So these Lashkar-loving hippies should really stop overthinking the connect between the BJP and the underlying message of DDLJ i.e. your joy is at the mercy of angry old people.

But the report that really sparked off outrage among the Macaulayan parasite class was about how a shipbuilding professional faces serious jail time for allegedly posting an anti-Modi opinion on a Goa-related Facebook group. Thankfully, the cops are checking to see if this is part of a “larger game plan to promote communal and social disharmony [in Goa]”. These Maoist seal-clubbers can whine all they want, but our balanced sense of justice has foiled what would’ve been a devastating communal clash in Goa. It would’ve played out somewhat like this:

Goan Guy 1: Hey, so I disagree with this FB post. In fact, I’m so angry that I’m going to pick up weapons and cause some communal disharmony. Wanna come?

Goan Guy 2: You mad or what men? It’s siesta time.

So clearly, the hysterical jhola agents need to calm down and do a shot of aam ras. They can’t always expect things to go their way and be “fair” or “logical”. You know the old adage: if you want to make an omelette, you have to arrest a few eggs. Or as Raj Malhotra once said, “Bade bade democracies mein aisi chhoti chhoti baatein hoti rehti hain.

(Note: This is my HT column dated 25th May 2014.)

22 thoughts on “It’s All Good. Nothing To See Here. Move On Now.

  1. The Indore twins will introduce themselves like Raj Malhotra: Narendra Modi ..naam toh suna hi hm hmm.
    Also nickname of the first kid will be Nanha Narendra till his puberty.

  2. I read all your posts with a smile and a giggle,cause its funny,silly.I am your number one fan,love the way you make comedy out of serious situations.People should read your columns and frame them and re read them just so they don’t look at life so seriously,specially certain Indians.

    Sent from my Windows Phone ________________________________

  3. Um..Didn’t Cyrus Broacha say the exact same things on ‘The Week that wasn’t’
    It’s brilliant stuff undoubtedly. But who copied who?

      1. Ashish Shakya doesn’t need to copy any one ,he is the original funny man of India. I have been reading his columns in Ht since 2009. Cyrus Broacha use to be funny when he was on Mtv that was more than a decade ago ,but not anymore.

    1. Lol. Aashish Shakya is one of the script writers for The Week That Wasn’t. Hence, he actually copied himself.

      1. Epic fail on my part. So it was a case of laziness than plagiarism! You dont always use same content on both.

      2. No, I don’t always use the same content on both, because *that* would be lazy (not to mention boring for me). But yeah, once in a while, there’s bound to be an overlap of content, especially when you’re talking about the same themes across media. Jokes I like also make their way from print and TV into my stand-up, and vice-versa. The horror. How dare I use my own thoughts the way I see fit, right?

      3. Well you are free to use your own thoughts where ever you deem fit – be it for TV, ht column/blog or even AIB youtube channel. Don’t get me wrong here, I absolutely love your brand of humor. Just that I was being greedy and expecting high quality content on both TV as well as print!

      4. I meant different high quality content on print and TV. Current content is already high quality!

  4. Wow….all these years that I watched DDLJ countless times never did I realise that it was such a bad influence on me! All I saw was this guy going to the other side of the world to find true love and a girl who in the end, broke traditional shackles to be with him and her father gets over his own prejudices to support her. I never realised that I was being subliminally hypnotised to endorse the scummiest aspect of our culture. Or may be it’s just because the current government endorsed it that you have dug deep in your psyche and surfaced with these hitherto unknown perspectives on one of the most loved movies of all times. I wonder what will be your reaction if the much hated party starts endorsing Andaz Apna Apna. Now I am sure this movie does not offend any of your “liberal sensitivities ” or does it??? It’s a communal movie because in the first few scenes only, Amir khan and Juhi Chawla are seen getting married in a MANDIRRR(oh jijus) of all the places. Also the whole Amir- Salman/ Ram- Bharat milap scene in the inn totally stinks of hindutva agenda to build ram Mandir. And the names of protagonists as well – AMAR – PREM!!! What rabid right winger came up with this unsecular bit??? Ram-Rahim/ AMAR- Paul/ or even better Balbeer khan tom & Syed peter daruwala are more representative of our diverse culture. Oh yes, Here is an idea! Why don’t you script a movie that is truly free of any cultural, religious ( read hindutva) influence. “Hum protest kar chuke sanam”starring Arvind Kejriwal, Prashant Bhushan/ “humari zamanat apke paas hai ” starring 420 AAP candidates and EC/” (x)congress-men – party of present past”with an ensemble caste of well all congressmen. Dude elections are over. There is a party that has won an overwhelming majority over all others. I know it’s not the party that you wanted but nevertheless it’s going to be there for the next five years. Get over it. Or at the least stop blaming Modi for every bit of stupidity that happens in this country. Arrest of Goa professionals is a work of over eager, sycophants (bureaucrats, police, local party men) who are incorrigible and sadly present everywhere ( refer to Azam Khan’s buffalo hunt by UP police). But I guess blaming Modi for every thing that is wrong with our country is just too old and convenient a habit to shed. Hopefully I get to read an article of yours which is filled with your usual sharp wit but sans the very evident and persistent political prejudice.

    1. Hi Shivangi. Always a pleasure to be subject to your biased approach towards humour 🙂

      “Or may be it’s just because the current government endorsed it that you have dug deep in your psyche and surfaced with these hitherto unknown perspectives on one of the most loved movies of all times.”

      Firstly, and not that it should matter, DDLJ is one of my favourite movies. I love it in all its cheesy glory, but this does not mean that I won’t joke about it.

      Second, I’ve made similar jokes about DDLJ way before this news event.

      In this column:

      And here:

      So there goes that argument. Let’s move on.

      “Dude elections are over. There is a party that has won an overwhelming majority over all others.”

      Exactly. So why are you still angry? Why are you still accusing me of having an agenda? They’re my leaders as much as yours, and are open to the same scrutiny and jokes as any of their rivals, current or otherwise.

      I’d tell you that it’s not prejudice to joke about news events, but before you’d believe me, you’d need to realise that a joke about X isn’t an automatic endorsement of Y. “I hate apples” does not automatically mean “I love oranges” and vice versa. (It’s so weird that this has to be explicitly stated.) I hope you see now why your Andaz Apna Apna rant is flawed.

      Also, bear in mind that I spoke out against the misuse of 66-A even when the overreaction was carried out in the name of the Congress.

      “Arrest of Goa professionals is a work of over eager, sycophants (bureaucrats, police, local party men) who are incorrigible and sadly present everywhere ( refer to Azam Khan’s buffalo hunt by UP police). But I guess blaming Modi for every thing that is wrong with our country is just too old and convenient a habit to shed.”

      If you’d do me (and yourself) the favour of dropping for one second the notion that I’m a pro-appeasement, blindly ignorant hater, you’d see that I’ve commented on an act carried out in his name BY OTHER PEOPLE.

      “Hopefully I get to read an article of yours which is filled with your usual sharp wit but sans the very evident and persistent political prejudice.”

      You just did, Shivangi. You just did.

      1. “Shant gadha dhari bheem shant”. First of all I am neither angry nor accusing of having any kind of agenda. And to prove it here are some emoticons 🙂 :). 🙂 😉 😀 :p. second, about your charge that I am biased. Of course I am biased. I don’t think anyone of us can claim to be truly neutral And especially during election season. As it must be clearly evident from my comments that I am a BJP supporter, there is also a very obvious pattern apparent in several of your articles that you support AAP – moderately, staunchly or a pure fanatic that I can’t tell but support AAP you do. My objection is not about criticising BJP. Criticise it away.” Kaun si mere pita Ji ki party hai”. My objection is when as a columnist albeit a humorous one, you let that bias in favour of one and against another, creep into your writing. And my conclusion is not based on just this write up but several others in the past. You ask me to not paint you as generic pro appeasement, blindly ignorant hater. But isn’t that what you do when drawing a caricature of all “mosque breaking, rabid right winger Hindu nationalist” just because someone supports Modi. But enough said about politics and elections. I subscribe to your write up not because I have this twisted love for sending hate mails. I subscribe because I genuinely enjoy it and have been doing so for past one year. It’s only the last couple of times that I have commented pointing out the pattern. You don’t think this assessment is accurate then so be it. I am not a writer but I do read a lot. And I have observed that some of the most loved writers are those who are democratic in their criticism as well as praise irrespective of their personal views. My earlier comment might have come off as a rant but it was meant as a feedback to a talented writer from a genuine admirer. And also I noticed that most of the comments you get are on the lines of ” awesome dude”, ROFL etc. You are writing in a public space on subjects like politics, films, regions on which everyone has some opinion or other. You can’t expect everyone to always agree with you. I hope their is some space for dissension here. Even if there isn’t, I am going to read your blog nevertheless and rant in my diary instead ” Dear Diary, today stupidus Maximus joked how Uma Bharti as environment minister wants Miranda poured down the Ganga to truly make it a Bhagwa Hindu river……” 🙂

  5. Love your style of writing always! Hilarious and refreshing. This is the best medium to be enjoying your material on. Elsewhere the way the actors showcase takes away some of the fun. Also, i appreciate and acknowledge your unbiased attack on everyone. A true follower should have noticed that You’ve said bad things about every political party. Attack everyone, spare no one, they’re all hilarious from your point of view!

  6. Having given up entirely on trying to have a nuanced conversation on politics, I will now proceed to honor our timeless tradition of listing out the many wonderful options available to filthy anarchists such as yourself, starting with a helpful suggestion on relocation to regions with greater totalitarian and sectarian passions. You could also apologize, not for anything in particular but for generally being a most objectionable inconvenience, like an unexpected coughing fit halfway through a cigarette consumed within minutes of very specific vigorous activity. How dare you, pedestrian, think yourself bold enough to cross this street?
    Graarr, T-Rex.

  7. What a wonderful piece! I loved the flow of thoughts and needless to say, the way you link humour with a societal message. The next time I see DDLJ (and I am sure there will be one), I will certainly be reminded of this.

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