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Kunal Kamra & Arnab Controversy: Comedian banned from flying with Indigo and Air India

Stand-up comedian allegedly harassed TV journalist Arnab Goswami on Indigo flight 6E 5317 from Mumbai to Lucknow on Tuesday. The airlines barred him from flying with the airlines for six months.

In the light of Kunal Kamra’s recent misbehaviour with TV journalist Arnab Goswami, Indigo and Air India decided to ban the stand-up comedian until further notice. Kamra, who had allegedly harassed Arnab Goswami on-board flight 6E 5317 posted a partial video of him heckling with the Editor of Republic TV.

In the video, Kunal Kamra is calling out senior journalist Arnab Goswami for being an ‘anti-national’, a part of ‘tukde tukde gang’. He urged him to read Rohit Vemula’s letter and ‘educate himself’. Kunal Kamra served Arnab with a fairly rude interrogative session where he asked him if he is a ‘coward or a journalist or a nationalist’. However, the journalist chose to stay silent and ignore Kamra while he continued his banter.

Kunal Kamra seemed agitated as he talked about Rohith Vermula, a PhD scholar at the University of Hyderabad. He committed suicide on the campus on 17 January, 2016. In the 10-page suicide note written by Rohith, he wrote slight hints about how Arnab’s harassing his mother and their religion on the show had impacted his mental health. The opposition parties blamed BJP and RSS affiliate groups. On the contrary, BJP accused the opposition of exploiting the sentiments of Vemula’s mother for political benefits.

Indigo Airlines took to Twitter to announce the six-months ban imposed on Kunal Kamra owing to his unacceptable behavior on flight 6E 5317 flying from Mumbai to Lucknow. In another tweet, they mentioned that passengers should refrain from indulging in slander while on-board. Following up with the incident, Air India too announced a ban on Kunal Kamra on the grounds of unacceptable behavior. He has been barred from flying on any of Air India flights until further notice.

Civil Aviation Minister Harshdeep Singh also tweeted, ‘Offensive behaviour designed to provoke & create disturbance inside an aircraft is absolutely unacceptable & endangers the safety of air travelers. We are left with no option but to advise other airlines to impose similar restrictions on the person concerned.’

In his defense, Kunal shared a 2-page-long statement explained his side of the story. He said he would be happy to apologize to all the Indigo staff and passengers except one who deserved his behaviour.

Kunal’s act has garnered national attention as Twitter stands divided on the matter. Kunal has gathered support from MP Shashi Tharoor who said that ‘somebody needed to give Arnab a taste of his medicine’.

Joining Shashi Tharoor, more Netizens came out in support of comedian Kunal Kamra who is currently trending on Twitter.

 

However, Sunanda Vashisht condemned his actions as she called him ‘a cheap, petty, anarchist and a nuisance’.

What are your thoughts between the Kunal Kamra and Arnab Goswami hiatus?

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