India's largest airline, IndiGo on January 28, 2020 late night suspended stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra for six months for heckling Republic TV channel journalist and founder, Arnab Goswami while he was onboard the same flight. Later, for the same reason Air India also suspended him until further notice.
Arnab Goswami was flying from Mumbai to Lucknow in IndiGo flight bearing 6E 5317 serial number. Kunal Kamra was also present in the same flight. Kamra then filmed a 1 minute 51 seconds video and uploaded it on Twitter. In the video Kamra is seen asking questions, such as “Are You a Journalist or a Coward?”, to Arnab Goswami, he also called him ‘Coward’. He also said in the video that he knew what he was doing was against regulations and he might go to jail for his act but still he dares to do this for Rohith Vemula’s mother. He asked him to go and read Rohith Vemula’s 10 pages suicide letter so that he may have some emotions or some heart or become human.
Rohith Vemula was a Ph.D. scholar in University of Hyderabad. He committed suicide on January 17, 2020 as he was continuously tortured by Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) wing in his university. He left a 10 pages suicide letter before committing suicide. In his searing letter talking of unfinished dreams and how he felt his “birth was his fatal accident”
Arnab Goswami is seen in the video not reacting to Kamra and watching a video on his laptop, with earphones in his ears.
After the video went viral on social media, IndiGo suspended Kamra from flying for six months with them. It said that such misbehaviour will not be tolerated.
"In light of the recent incident on board 6E 5317 from Mumbai to Lucknow, we wish to inform that we are suspending Mr. Kunal Kamra from flying with IndiGo for a period of six months, as his conduct onboard was unacceptable behaviour. Hereby, we wish to advise our passengers to refrain from indulging in personal slander whilst onboard, as this can potentially compromise the safety of fellow passengers," said IndiGo on Twitter.
To which Kunal Kamra replied to IndiGo's tweet by thanking them for the decision they have made. Later in his tweet he also told that at the end of the flight that he personally apologised to every passenger, except one, and also to the pilots for the trouble which he caused to them.
Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri in his tweet condemned such behaviour and asked other airlines to do the same thing that IndiGo has done.
Following which Go Air, SpiceJet also suspended him till the further notice. Approx. 77.77% airlines have suspended him from flying up till now. Other airlines have not responded yet in this matter. Total 4 airlines have suspended.
After SpiceJet suspended him from flying. Arnab Goswami tweet “Modiji can I walk yaan uspe bhi baan hai….”
Many other stand up comedians such as Rohan Joshi, Anirban Das have tweeted in support of Kunal Kamra. While others like NDTV journalist Nidhi Razdan have condemned such act. Currently, tweet war is going on this issue. Various memes are being used to troll each other.
The Twitter post by Kamra went instantly viral. 'Arnab', 'Indigo' (sic), 'Kamra' and 'Kunal' have been top Twitter trends on Tuesday. At around 21:30, there were 122,000 tweets about Arnab, 32,000 tweets about IndiGo and 64,000 tweets about Kamra.
Author – Satwik Sharma