Ram Gopal Varma Booked For Controversial Tweet On Droupadi Murmu; Check His Clarifications

Lucknow: Filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma has landed in a soup for his ‘controversial’ remarks about the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA) presidential candidate Droupadi Murmu.

An FIR has now been registered against him at Hazratganj police station in Lucknow on the basis of the complaint filed by a social worker, Manoj Singh and he has been booked under Sections 295 A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class), 501 (printing or engraving matter known to be defamatory), 504 (intentional insult), 505 1(b) (cause fear or alarm to the public), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman), of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), and also under relevant sections of the Information Technology Act.

In a tweet on June 22, Varma had said, “If Drapaudi is the President who are the Pandavas? And more importantly, who are the Kauravas?”

The complainant said that the tweet was a deliberate attempt to vitiate the atmosphere and hurt religious sentiments by portraying the characters of the Mahabharata in a bad light and added that the post was also “humiliating for a woman”.

Telangana BJP leader Gudur Narayana Reddy had earlier lodged a complaint against Varma, accusing him of making fun of and disrespecting the SC/ST community.

Political leaders across parties in Odisha, too, had sharply reacted to the filmmaker’s post and demanded an apology. BJP MP from Bhubaneswar Aparajita Sarangi had earlier said, “This should be condemned. He does not know that he is saying this about the would-be President of India. This reflects his own ‘sanskar’. He should withdraw his words and apologise.”

BJD leader Tejeswar Parida requested members of both BJP and BJD to protest against such unpalatable comments and demanded that a police complaint be filed against Varma.

Two days later, the filmmaker had tried to clear his stand and said that the comment was in “earnest irony” and did not intend to hurt anyone’s sentiments. “This was said just in an earnest irony and not intended in any other way…Draupadi in Mahabharata is my favourite character but since the name is such a rarity I just remembered the associated characters and hence my expression. Not at all intended to hurt sentiments of anyone.”

On June 25, the filmmaker posted two more tweets about her.

“The tremendousness of this incredible icon the extremely honourable Drapaudi being president is that both Pandavas and Kauravas will forget their battle and together worship her and then Mahabharat will be rewritten in new India and the world will be proud of India…Jai BJP.”

“Post the extensive research I did on the honourable Draupadi ji and studying the nuances in the intensity of her eyes and the depths of both her smile and facial contours, I have no doubt that she will be the greatest president ever in the whole wide world…Thank you BJP.”


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