- Prashant Bhushan's tweet on Anti-Romeo squad triggered controversy
- Many accused him of 'hurting religious sentiments', sought apology
- 'My tweet on Romeo brigade being distorted,' Mr Bhushan tweeted later
The Anti-Romeo Squads, a BJP poll promise fulfilled by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, has generated debate after reports of alleged police excesses. While the job involved cracking down on men who harass, stalk and molest women, cellphone video from various parts of the state allegedly showed the police meting out a rough and ready justice, forcing men to do squats or shaving off their hair, or fining men accompanying their cousins, refusing to take the word of the family.
While Romeo, the immortal character of Shakespeare, has been used by the government to loosely refer to molesters, Mr Bhushan's comment added a religious spin to the subject. The tweet that set it off read:
Soon after "Lord Krishna" started trending on Twitter, with users taking Mr Bhushan to task.
Romeo loved just one lady,while Krishna was a legendary Eve teaser.Would Adityanath have the guts to call his vigilantes AntiKrishna squads? https://t.co/IYslpP0ECv- Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) April 2, 2017
@pbhushan1:Reflect poorly on your upbringing! Your learned parents & brother never said anything controversial ! Shocking! Saddened by Tweet- Umesh Sharma (@youmeloveall) April 2, 2017
@pbhushan1 It is such a shame and disappointment coming from you.. Don't stoop to such low levels for attention! Please! Its too cheap even for you- Ritika Sudan (@ritikasudan01) April 2, 2017
@pbhushan1 you are wrong...u are saying that Gopis were being harassed by lord Krishna. Comparing a consensual playful act to molestation?- Praveen Pandey (@zoomonthis) April 2, 2017
In face of the barrage of protests, Mr Bhushan issued a prompt clarification.
@pbhushan1 You don't know the difference between being naughty and molestation??!!- Rajni Kalra (@rajjorani) April 2, 2017
My tweet on Romeo brigade being distorted. My position is: By the logic of Romeo Brigade, even Lord Krishna would look like eve teaser.- Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) April 2, 2017
But his clarification failed to placate everyone:
We have grown up with legends of young Krishna teasing Gopis.The logic of Romeo squad would criminalise this.Didnt intend to hunt sentiments- Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) April 2, 2017
"It takes several births to understand the Lord Krishna. It is sad how easily he got dragged into politics," BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra tweeted.
@pbhushan1 "Legendary eve teaser Krishna" is what you tweeted. Don't prevaricate. And relax...all you are "hunting" is your own credibility.- (@sanmissar) April 2, 2017