Twitter Deleted Some Of Kangana Ranaut’s Tweets. But Looking At How She Insulted Rihanna, Is Deleting Enough?
Let’s talk about Kangana Ranaut. Yep, we’re getting straight to the point because I have decided that any coverage I give her won’t be getting any interesting openings or impactful closings anymore. I’d rather use my writing talents on better stories. In fact, I know several media acquaintances covering the entertainment beat who’re at times physically exhausted of writing about the next ridiculous thing Kangana has done/said on Twitter to stay relevant.
Now one reason we do it is simple—Ghanda hai par dhandha hai yeh. It’s part of our jobs and we get paid for it. (Clarifying it out here before anyone accuses us of paid media, I mean ‘salary’. Sigh.) But the other, more important reason is that people, for the most part, are stupid and gullible. So we need to constantly point at things and tell them, as if we were teaching a baby, “This here? Bad.” If we’re lucky, sometimes, Twitter does it for us. Like this time when it stepped in to delete some of Kangana Ranaut’s tweets for violating the social media platform’s rules.
Normally, living under a rock and being clueless is considered a bad thing. But when shit like this goes down, you sometimes wish you were blissfully ignorant. But unless that was your reality, you are likely to be aware of what transpired on Twitter in the past 48 hours. Barbadian-American singer Rihanna shared a CNN article about the ongoing farmers’ protests in India, and asked “why we aren’t talking about this.” Yep, that’s all she said, but RW trolls and all those devotees of blind nationalism interpreted as some foreign force declaring war on their country.
Things got worse when Rihanna’s tweet sparked a bunch of other international celebrities like Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg and Lebanese-American Internet personality Mia Khalifa to also tweet about it. The trolls tried to attack Rihanna, make false narratives about her and troll her with the vocabulary of school kids who’ve just found out what ‘porn’ is. Yep, one of them was Kangana Ranaut, alright.
But before we delve into that, let me lay down what happened next. Diljit Dosanjh, Taapsee Pannu, Swara Bhasker and few other serial supporters who’ve been vocal about the farmers protests voiced their support for Rihanna and Greta Thunberg. Meanwhile, so threatened was the other side that the Ministry of External Affairs issued an official statement calling this international intervention some kind of propaganda. And while trolls and IT cells were in an overdrive trying to prove that Rihanna and Greta were paid to tweet about this, a Twitter storm whipped up, headlined by Bollywood celebs like Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn and sports personalities like Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli, Hardik Pandya and so on.
Farmers constitute an extremely important part of our country. And the efforts being undertaken to resolve their issues are evident. Let’s support an amicable resolution, rather than paying attention to anyone creating differences. 🙏🏻#IndiaTogether #IndiaAgainstPropaganda https://t.co/LgAn6tIwWp
— Akshay Kumar (@akshaykumar) February 3, 2021
India has always been stronger when we all stand together and finding a solution is the need of the hour. Our farmers play an important role in our nation’s well being and I am sure everyone will play their roles to find a solution TOGETHER. #IndiaTogether 🇮🇳
— Rohit Sharma (@ImRo45) February 3, 2021
The tweets were mostly resharing the MEA narrative and basically saying that anyone who supports these International personalities ‘interfering’ in our ‘ghar ki baat’ were doing wrong. They used hashtags like #IndiaAgainstPropaganda while completely missing the irony that their tweets looked more like propaganda. At least Rihanna and Greta Thunberg, in the off chance that they were paid, had differently worded tweets that looked organic!
While all this was going down, Queen Kangana Ranaut continued her tireless tirade, maligning everyone in her sight. Not only did she rekindle her feud with Diljit Dosanjh, and call Rihanna a ‘porn’ singer for the way she chooses to dress, she also clapped back at a tweet that Rohit Sharma had shared. That was super weird because Sharma ji ka ladka was basically tweeting in the same vein as the rest of the Indian celebs, following the ‘amicable resolution’ and ‘togetherness and unity’ wala script. Tum dono same team se khel rahe ho behen! Why the agitated reply?
Now, currently, Twitter seems to be playing a treacherous game of ball with the Indian government. First, it restricted the accounts of publications like The Caravan and some journalists and Twitter influencers who were talking about farmers’ protests in dissent with the GOI. The accounts were back online in India, but then Twitter employees were reportedly under pressure to restrict those accounts again. On the other hand, Twitter goes and deletes Kangana Ranaut’s tweets that said something about “the cancer in the body of the nation” being identified and the “process of eradication will start”.
I don’t know if this was a topical reference since today is World Cancer Day. But clearly, calling someone a ‘cancer’ and asking for their eradication, or even calling farmers ‘terrorists’ is not exactly going to go down well with anyone, even those who are opposing the farmers’ protests. Ye toh kaafi extreme ho gaya, madam. What’s worse is that this isn’t the first time Kangana’s tweets have this ‘violent subtext’. When the controversy around Amazon Prime Video series Tandav was raging on, the actress had jumped on that bandwagon too and tweeted something about “time to take their heads off”. Even then, Twitter had suspended her account for a few days.
But Attn: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. Jacky. My man. Brother. These tactic ain’t working.
Because as you read this, there still are on Kangana Ranaut’s Twitter profile, her utterly outrageous tweets about Rihanna. Like a third-rate news channel, Kangana has deliberately purposed pictures of Rihanna that would scandalise the sanskaari desi in what is explicitly an attempt at character assassination. She points at a fellow woman’s ‘ass-crack’ and calls her a porn star. BTW it is a legit profession and nothing to be ashamed about. But the connotations, the tonality, the intention of her using the word is filthy. And no woman should have to see herself be demeaned like that by another.
I could say, what’s worse is that Kangana does this over multiple tweets, not letting go of a single chance to add distasteful adjectives to Rihanna’s name. But no, what’s worst is that she has done this before and is not likely to stop doing it anytime soon. Kangana Ranaut used to be this inspiration for women who won’t let anyone walk all over them. Especially Bollywood, which seems to derive some sadistic pleasure from treating its women employees like crap. I still remember how Queen Kangana challenged that status quo, how she broke the wheel.
But now, just as another queen who broke the wheel turned mad and burnt an entire city down with just one word, Kangana Ranaut is spewing venom with her words and burning down any shred of decency we might maintain on social media. She constantly brings down other women, alleges that people got their gigs and fame by sleeping around and continues to churn more troll fodder. And that should not be acceptable.
If we are deactivating Twitter accounts for instigating riots or ‘spreading propaganda’ then we might as well shut down Kangana Ranaut’s Twitter account for all the vitriol that she retches up on Twitter. Even over matters that she has absolutely nothing to do with. And then slams Rihanna for doing the same because she is a popstar who tried to tweet about Indian farmers? What logic?
Sorry, she’s gotta go. Or she can stay but she’s got to be more respectful towards other women. Isn’t respect what she wants from Bollywood? Then why, Kangana, oh why won’t you practice what you preach?
Sharp-tongued feminist. Proud nerd. Opinions with on-point pop-culture references about films, books, your toxic BF, the patriarchy, and the Oxford comma.