YouTube video

Comedian Tanmay Bhat is now in some serious trouble. After he posted his video clip showing Indian luminaries Lata Mangeshkar and Sachin Tendulkar—he used their morphed images—engaged in a war of words on the online social media and it went viral, the video has created unprecedented furor in political circles and filmdom.

On Sunday, the controversial snapchat spoof captioned ‘Sachin vs Lata Civil War’ went viral on social media and drew strong protests from political parties such as the MNS, Shiv Sena, BJP and NCP, who also demanded police action against the funnyman of All India Bakchod (AIB). Both the Master Blaster and the melody queen are recipients of Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian award.

Meanwhile, it was reported that the Mumbai police have sought legal opinion on whether they can register an FIR against Bhat and have written to Google and YouTube administrators to block the controversial video. A police team is translating the video in order to figure out if it can invite any legal action, official sources were quoted as saying.

Key MNS functionary, Ameya Khopkar warned that his party colleagues will beat up Bhat if he continues with his shows “maligning our heroes and national icons”. Khopkar has also lodged a formal police complaint against AIB and Bhat.

Assistant commissioner of police Yashwant Pathak told ANI that the police were also trying to identify and block the IP address of the device from which the video was uploaded.

YouTube video

Bhat used an app called Face Swap, which allows users to “borrow” another person’s face, for creating two videos titled Sachin Vs Lata #Civilwar that angered admirers of both the singer and the cricketer. Among other things in the videos, Bhat suggested why 86-year-old Mangeshkar was “still alive” and debated if Test captain Virat Kohli was better than Tendulkar, Hindustan Times reported. Bhat also picked on the social media, stating: “LoL, Twitter, jaha pe logo ke marne se pehle unke marne ki khabar trend hoti hai, ‘tasteless’ aur ‘crass’ jaise words use kar rahi hai (Twitter, a place where people circulate news of people’s death before the actual demise is witnessing use of words like tasteless and crass).”

“When you guys write about me tomorrow, can you please use my snapchat ID – it’s the tan may, thanks,” he added. The video sparked off a virtual war on social media as political leaders and several members of the film fraternity attacked Bhat for poking fun at legends while fellow-comedians came to his defence.

Pahlaj Nihalani called for Bhat’s immediate arrest, even as filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar termed the video “sickening”. Actor Riteish Deshmukh had earlier tweeted that “disrespect is not cool and neither is it funny”, with Bollywood comrades Anupam Kher and Celina Jaitley echoing his sentiments, Hindustan Times reported.

Comedian Neeti Palta, on the other hand, wondered if the video was a “matter of national security” to be debated in such a manner. In an apparent reference to Deshmukh’s penchant for starring in movies that find lewd amusement in the female anatomy, she enquired: “Looks pe joke nahin karna chahiye (Shouldn’t one make fun of others’ looks)?”

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