Comedy Central has earned the wrath of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting’s for showing content deemed to be offensive on their show, Stand Up Club. According to the ministry's notice to the channel, the show contained “obscene dialogues and vurgar words derogatory to women and hence appeared to offend good taste and decency”. Stating multiple clauses that the channel has breached, the IB Ministry banned the channel for a period of 10 days, starting today till June 4 throughout India.
Govt issues ban on Comedy Central for 10 days (Image credit: Comedy Central)
As is the case these days, several Twitter users decided to use the platform to ridicule the ministry's decision. Here are some of the funniest tweets:
This Comedy Central order is signed by “Neeti Sarkar” which loosely translates to “Morality Govt.” Hehe. mib.nic.in/writereaddata/…
— Ramesh Srivats (@rameshsrivats) May 25, 2013
— YP Rajesh (@yprajesh) May 25, 2013
Caught a guy staring at a woman on the street. Told him to continue because he can't harm her now that Comedy Central's been banned.
— Rohan Joshi (@mojorojo) May 25, 2013
Other users had this to say:
I&B Ministry, since you objected to Stand-Up Club where audience laughed, do watch the retard Hindi serials on prime time too #ComedyCentral
— Dushyant K. Mahant (@DKMahant) May 25, 2013
IB: BannedComedy Central: joking, right? IB: No you areComedy Central: We always jokeIB: Now you wontComedy Central: See, you joke too!
— Pranav Sapra (@pranavsapra) May 25, 2013
Going by the official letter, the the government shut the channel down for two separate cases. The first involved an episode where a man was seen performing a stand-up involving “obscene and suggestive gesturing and gyration”. According to the official notice “the man was shown uttering dialogues denigrating women, indecently and crudely referred to sex organs of men-and women and the sing-song rendition by the man sought to pornographically describe the male lust, depicting women as a commodity of sex. The portrayal appeared to deprave, corrupt and injure the public morality or morals.”
The second case was an episode from the reality show titled “Popcorn” wherein members of the Comedy Central crew are seen playing pranks on the general populace. In this case, one of the Comedy Central crew members was seen mimicking the act of intercourse with a set of dummy legs, in different locations. The ministry has deemed that these actions were made in bad taste, and were of a sexual nature, and were derogatory to women.
In response to the show cause notice issued by the ministry, Comedy Central said that as a 24-hour channel dedicated to English language comedy content, they cater to a niche viewership accustomed to and interested in English programmes. They further clarified that “Popcorn” is a reality show which contained different pranks. And in this show after playing a prank on any individual, the 'victim' of the prank is informed about it and also informed about the fact that the prank was being recorded clandestinely.
Be that as it may, as of now the ban stands, but you can always head to Twitter to express your frustration!