Anyone who has read a Rediff message board knows that the Internet is a funny place. For an article on, say, advice for new mothers, you can see people fighting over 'Southies' and 'Northies', or 'Sickulars and Chaddis' in the space below meant for discussion.
There are also other examples in cyberspace to show that we the people of India have not lost our sense of humour. Yet.
One such recent episode involves the redoubtable Subramanian Swamy, who wrote in 2001 about 'the creeping fascism of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh' (External link here
), and who is generally now believed to be the messiah sent from above to rescue all Hindus from the evils of the West.
Subramanian Swamy is generally regarded as The Man You Don't Mess With. Ask the Congress party brass why.
So, in June this year, when a parody page of him cropped up on Facebook, eyebrows began to hit the ceiling.
The parody page's posts were of the same kind as the 'official' page's: Linking everything on earth to Indian (read Hindu) origins.
Monalisa was an Indian woman named Monali Shah, the parody page declared, William Shakespeare was actually Vilvan Sheshappa Iyer, and so on. Few noticed that this Swamy was Subramaniam, and not Subramanian.T
he original Mr Swamy was not amused. Congis and AAPtards were behind the parody page, he thundered to PTs (Patriotic Tweeple, his fans) on Twitter. Facebook must shut it down or face legal notice.
A couple of days later, Swamy's 'official' Facebook page disappeared, while the parody page lived on with a name change to Unofficial: Subramaniam Swamy.
And it parodied even more, declaring, Andaaz Apna Apna
style, Susu mai hu Mark idhar hai
, and with a meme that showed how Zuckerberg deleted the official page:
Turns out, the 'official' page was not run by Swamy, but by some 'patriotic Hindus' from America, calling themselves Shankhnaad.
A sample article from Shankhnaad's lovely Web site declares murdered Pune-based anti-superstition activist Narendra Dabholkar was a fraud.
Swamy himself admitted to the 'outsourcing,' saying that while he mans his own Twitter handle, Facebook takes too much time so these guys run it with his blessings.
Troll of the year: The man who parodied Subramanian Swamy!