The latest video posted by stand-up comedian and AIB co-founder Tanmay Bhat kicked up a political storm in Maharashtra Monday, with the BJP and MNS criticising it.
While the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) filed a complaint with the Mumbai Police and BJP legislator Ashish Shelar met the police commissioner regarding the matter, sources said a non-cognizable offence under Section 500 of the IPC might be registered against Bhat.
The video has been shared with the legal team of the Mumbai Police to verify whether the video may attract any cognizable offence under provisions of the Information Technology (IT) Act, as it was posted on Snapchat and Facebook.
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Pending legal opinion, police sources said, Bhat won’t be summoned until the preliminary investigations were completed.
Mumbai Police said they received a complaint filed by the MNS Cine Workers Wing at the Shivaji Park police station.
The Special Branch of the Mumbai Police placed a request with Google and YouTube seeking that the video be deleted. The specialised wing also deleted over 200 posts to ensure that law and order is not affected.
Titled ‘Sachin v/s Lata Civil War’, the video features a Snapchat spoof by Bhat of the two icons conversing.
“We have carried out a panchnama of the said controversial video and have also taken snapshots of the same, which will act as evidence in case an offence is registered. The same procedure has also been followed for the important posts posted after the video went viral. These posts are by various private members, including celebrities and politicians,” a senior official told The Indian Express.
Sources said a case of defamation could not be pursued as the police could not take suo motu cognizance and that the complainant would be advised to file such a plea before a magistrate.
Bhat was not reachable for comment, though he posted some tweets. In one tweet, making reference to a previous controversy surrounding the AIB, the comedian posted, “Roast wale din yaad aa gaye by god”.