Sony’s Comedy Circus on Indian television: A comment

The extent to which the new social class of India has got decoupled from India was brought home strikingly a few days ago in the popular Indian TV show called Comedy Circus produced by Sony TV, and judged by Archana Puran Singh and Tusshar Kapoor ( I do not know whether this is the latest spelling or a couple os s or h have further been added)
The Circus depicted two comedians play acting as Indian army officers. Their concept of military humour comprised the junior officer’s repeatedly slapping his senior. As if this was not bad enough, they were shown as cowards. The war experience of both did not go beyond fighting relatives. and the senior officer was begging the enemy forces to please let him go.
The viewers sitting in the studio found it hilarious and showed their approval by loud cheering. The judges showed their appreciation by awarding the team nine out of ten marks.
My mind went back a few decades when the Indian military was portrayed with reverence in the Indian movies, skits and plays. Military was no doubt made butt of jokes but the military was Pakistani or Chinese, never Indian. The mass media depiction of Indian military stood apart from that of Indian police. A joke from those times went like this.
An army jawan and a police hawaldar and travelling in a train. The policeman mocks the army man: You are away from home for so long. Surely you must be getting sons who are not your own. The army man replies: Yes, it does happen, But we keep track of who is whose. Our own sons we recruit in the army; the bastard ones we send to police.
Times have changed. Isn’t it?

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