Shiv Sena leader, Sanjay Raut has yet again crossed the line with his bizarre remarks and outlandish comments. This time around, the Rajya Sabha member, writing in the party mouthpiece “Saamana”, has said that the country cannot be run in a “Talibani” style.
He made these absurd remarks with reference to the recent controversy surrounding Deepika Padukone’s visit to JNU ostensibly for showing “silent solidarity” towards the students affected by violence against students last Sunday inside the Central Varsity campus.
Raut said, “The demand for boycott of the actress and her film is wrong. The country cannot be run in a “Talibani” style.”
It is ironic that the Shiv Sena leader feels that the ‘boycott’ of the movie is of a Talibani character, while the party had itself had resorted to hooliganism and had stopped the screening of a Kannada movie in Kohlapur only a few days ago.
In fact, the Shiv Sena which seems to be trying hard to show its Hindutva image and appease its ‘liberal’ partners in Maharashtra has been making out of the way remarks for quite some time. The Uddhav Thackeray led Sena has been blowing anything and everything out of proportions.
Even after Jamia violence, the Shiv Sena supremo Uddhav Thackeray had likened the police action that had followed with the Jallianwala Bagh massacre. The party continued to draw such weird analogies even after JNU campus violence, as Uddhav Thackeray compared the incident with 26/ 11. The party is trying to play the textbook liberal propaganda by drawing such absurd analogies and comparing every second incident with some of the most brutal historic tragedies.
While the Shiv Sena feels that a peaceful ‘boycott’ of a movie resembles the Taliban, the party has itself been resorting to violent and brutish actions. An amnesiac Raut has probably forgotten that his own party had burnt an effigy of Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa and also forcibly stopped the screening of a Kannada movie, blatantly stifling freedom of speech and expression, over the decades-old Belgaum dispute.
Even last month, Shiv Sena workers had beat up a man and tonsured his head merely because he had dared to crack a joke about Uddhav Thackeray. The goons were seen slapping and thrashing the man, Hiramani Tiwari brutally, to the extent that the man’s medical report states that there is severe damage to his eardrum.
In fact, Twitter users pointed out how it was the Shiv Sena which had routinely taken up “Talibani” methods to interrupt screening of movies in the past. Today, the Sena is sympathising with Deepika Padukone after calls for boycotting ‘Chhapaak”. Incidentally, the same Uddhav Thackeray party had burnt effigies of a Deepika Padukone starrer movie Padmavat’s Director, Sanjay Leela Bhansali in the year 2017 and had also demanded a complete ban in the movie.
Not only Padmavat, but Shiv Sena had demanded a ban on Shahrukh Khan starrer ‘My Name is Khan’. Demanding bans has been the modus operandi of the Shiv Sena and today it has issues with those demanding a peaceful boycott.
— Pagan Socrates (@Pagan_Socrates) January 12, 2020
— Jatin Bansal (@jatinbansal) January 12, 2020
In fact, Shiv Sena has always been synonymous with hooliganism and vandalism. In October 1991, Shiv Sainiks had dug up the Wankhede Stadium pitch in Mumbai in order to prevent Pakistan from playing in India. However, this was not the only time that Shiv Sena dug up pitches and successfully blocked a cricket match. Indian cricket and the BCCI has been a major victim of Shiv Sena’s hooliganism.
Pitch khodne wale yeh bol rahe hai 🤦🏻♂
Taab toh taliban ke suruvaat karne wale tum log hi ho
— Apurv gupta (@Apurvgu68761514) January 12, 2020
As per Shiv Sena’s ideology, as altered after joining the Maha Vikas Aghadi alliance in Maharashtra, burning effigies, stifling freedom of speech by stopping movies and even beating up peaceful dissenters mercilessly is democratic, whereas peaceful boycott of a movie is “Talibani”. Shiv Sena has come to epitomise hypocrisy and double standards over the recent past, a sentiment that gets strongly reaffirmed with Raut’s outlandish remarks.