Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra on Thursday said comedian Vir Das, who is facing police complaints over his monologue I come from two Indias, would not be allowed to perform in the state.
Das, who is in the United States right now, on Monday uploaded a six-minute video on YouTube titled I come from two Indias, which was a part of his recent performance at the John F Kennedy Centre in Washington DC.
The Mumbai-based stand-up comic, who has also dabbled in cinema, had touched on various topics in the clip, including the farm protests, the battle against COVID-19, the duality in response to women, particularly rape, and the crackdown on comedians.
“We won't allow such jesters to perform. If he tenders an apology, we are going to think over it," Mishra, who is also the MP government's spokesman, told PTI when asked about the comedian's monologue.
Das, who has issued a statement saying his comments weren't intended to insult the country, has found backing from Trinamool Congress member Mahua Moitra as well as Congress leaders Kapil Sibal and Shashi Tharoor.
Mishra said there are some jesters who try to 'defame' India, and they have some supporters like Kapil Sibal and other Congress people.
"Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also defames India on foreign land. MP Congress chief Kamal Nath also does it," the minister alleged.
"Such type of people like him, I call them 'vidushak' (jester) would not be allowed to perform in the state. If he (Das) apologises, we are going to think over it," he said.
Senior Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi had criticised Das for 'vilifying the nation' and actor Kangana Ranaut demand strict action against the comedian.
The Federation of Western India Cine Employees, a film body that claims to have have over 2.5 lakh registered members, earlier said its members won't work with Das unless he issues a public apology.
Last month, Narottam Mishra had issued a 24-hour ultimatum to fashion and jewellery designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee to withdraw an advertisement with 'objectionable and obscene' portrayal of 'mangalsutra' or else face statutory action.
Prior to it, Dabur India Private Limited had withdrawn its Fem cream bleach advertisement, which showed same-sex couple celebrating Karva Chauth and watching each other through a sieve, after Mishra termed the ad as objectionable and warned that legal steps would be taken against it.