16 June, 2021

A Comedy Of (No) Manners

Tanmay Bhat’s snapchat on Tendulker and Lata may be tasteless, but the reaction has been ridiculous

Tanmany Bhat seen ­impersonating the two celebrities
A Comedy Of (No) Manners

How long does it take to go from being an online hero to a villain? Two minutes and three seconds is all it takes. Tanmay Bhat of the comedy collective All India Bakchod (AIB) has managed to strum all the wrong notes with his parody of Sachin Tendulkar and Lata Mangeshkar on a Snapchat video that went viral. Most agree that his jokes about Lata Mangeshkar’s age and longevity are “disgusting and in bad taste”. But in a democr­acy like ours, should he not be allowed to make them? Is it a crime to be ­obnoxious? Can he be arrested for it?

What’s the fuss all about? The video titled ‘Sachin vs Lata Civil War’ is in typical AIB style. It has Bhat using the application’s face-swap technique to mimic cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and legendary playback singer Lata Mangeshkar, both Bharat Ratna holders. There are the usual cusswords that are now predictable in an AIB video, with both Tanmay Tendulkar and Tanmay Mangeshkar going at each other full-throttle. But what has angered people are the ageist references to...

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