That, according to Abhijit Panse of the Shiv Sena’s student wing, is enough to pose a threat to “communal harmony” in India. Panse is upset that everyone doesn’t adore the leaders he worships, and some have even started hate groups against them on Orkut, which he wants to ban. Rediff reports:
It is not only Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and our leader Balasaheb Thackeray but leaders like Indira Gandhi and Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar too. Some mischief-mongers have also started a ‘I hate India’ campaign on Orkut and they want to disturb the communal harmony in our country,” says Panse.
“We have time and again raised this issue but nothing is being done about it so we feel the best solution would be to ban Orkut in India,” he adds.
Note that this isn’t even about religion. These holy cows are flesh and blood people, three of them politicians, and while I don’t know enough about Ambedkar to comment on him, the other two have been malevolent forces in Indian politics. (More on Indira: 1, 2.) For Panse, though, any deviation from what he and his troops believe is unacceptable, and will be handled with physical violence.
When pointed out that the Internet is a free medium and there is no way for him to prevent someone sitting in, say, Australia to post anti-India messages, he said, “I know this. Our software engineers are working on this front and we will track down such people. If that person is even sitting in America we will go and thrash that person. We want to catch hold of such culprits who do such things and thrash them.”
Such courage. Meanwhile, the rest of India quivers as the “I hate India” group on Orkut threatens its very existence. And harmony. Heh.
(More posts on Orkut: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
And my essays on free speech and censorship: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.
Link via email from Gautam John.)