oppn parties Arresting Kiku Sharda: Don't Kill Laughter

News Snippets

  • The Army conducts an operational alert exercise in eastern Ladakh
  • The IAF reopened the Vijaynagar advance landing ground, an airstrip in Arunachal Pradesh near the Chinese border
  • Amit Shah says he never sought to impose Hindi
  • Government bans the manufacture and sale of e-cigarettes in India
  • Mamata Banerjee seeks an appointment with Home Minister Amit Shah today
  • Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee meets PM Modi in what she later described as a government-to-government meeting
  • Supreme Court sets a deadline of October 18 for completing the hearings in the Ayodhya case
  • Pakistan rejects India's request for use of its airspace when PM Modi flies to the US later this week
  • Crude prices fall sharply as Saudi Arabia assures normal production in a few weeks. Prices fall by 5.4% to $65.30 per barrel
  • Sensex tumbles 700 points over fears that rising crude prices will deal a body blow to the tottering Indian economy
  • As Rajeev Kumar fails to appear before the CBI despite several notices, the agency forms a special team to locate and apprehend him
  • S Jaishankar says Pakistan is not a normal neighbour and its behaviour is a "set of aberrations"
  • External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar says PoK in Indian territory and the country hopes to have physical jurisdiction over it one day
  • Barasat Sessions court near Kolkata rejects Rajeev Kumar anticipatory bail application citing lack of jurisdiction as the reason
  • PM Modi celebrates his birthday with Narmada aarti and later has lunch with his mother.
Sunni Wakf Board and Nirvani Akhara write to the Supreme Court for a negotiated settlement to the Ayodhya dispute
oppn parties
Arresting Kiku Sharda: Don't Kill Laughter

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
Arresting actor Kiku Sharda for mimicking Ram Rahim was an act of stupidity. Interpreting criminal law in a manner that it will take away laughter from the people is in itself a criminal act. There are millions of babas in our country, each claiming a sizeable following. If politicians can be mimicked on TV (see the hilarious animations on Aaj Tak and India Today TV channels), what is the problem in mimicking babas. Self-styled godmen are not God – if their actions are mimicked, religious feelings are not hurt. It is only the personal feelings of a few thousand followers that are supposedly hurt. A narrow interpretation of Sec 295A of the IPC is not in the interest of society.

Further, Sharda is just an artist. He was carrying out the task assigned to him. As he rightly pointed out, the script was written by someone else, the costume was designed by another person and the act was directed by yet another person. The show was aired by the channel. He was just performing. If at all anyone was to be arrested, it was people who conceived the show and aired it. Even that would have been against the spirit of Sec 295A.

We need to take comedy in our stride. Cartoonists and mimickry artistes have a job to do. They will take things out of current affairs, weave it around a personality and create their acts. If we cannot take it in the right spirit, there is something certainly wrong with us. Laughter is a vanishing commodity. These artistes are doing their bit in keeping it alive. A few more arrests like this and our TV screens will once again become dull and drab.