SC agrees to hear plea to ban Sardar jokes online
New Delhi: The Supreme Court has agreed to look into a plea seeking ban on websites with jokes on Sardars.
Petitioner Harvinder Chowdhary said that the community was projected as people of low intellect, stupid and foolish through such jokes.
Chowdhary urged an apex court bench of Justice TS Thakur and Justice Kurian Joseph to pass an order banning websites spreading jokes on the community.
The bench asked her why she wanted such a ban as this community is known for a great sense of humour and they also enjoy such jokes.
"This is only an amusement. Why you want it to be stopped," Justice Thakur said while seeking to understand the rationale behind the ban plea.
The petitioner argued, "All jokes relating to the Sikh community should be stopped. My children are humiliated and feel embarrassed and they don't want to suffix Singh with their name."
Chowdhary said whenever she travelled in public transport, including Delhi Metro, she came across instances where even on trivial issues people were ridiculed while citing jokes relating of the Sikh community.
Referring to a recent comment by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during electioneering in Bihar that Bihar residents were the most intelligent people, the petitioner said it reflected as if other communities were not intelligent.
As Justice Thakur responded that the prime minister would say the same thing about Sikhs if he went to Chandigarh, Chowdhary said the prime minister would not say so because the BJP was in rift with its ally, Shiromani Akali Dal.
Urging the court to direct the government to clamp down on the more than 5,000 websites like www.jokes duniya.com/category/sardar-jokes.htm, the petitioner said, "They are criticising one community and it should stop."
Naming a number of websites carrying Sikh-centric jokes, Chowdhary sought directions to the Telecom Ministry to install filters to weed out jokes relating to the community.
She said these websites created public nuisance under Section 268 of Indian Penal Code and it was a crime under the cyber laws.
The court directed for further hearing of the matter on November 16 as she wanted to file some more documents in support of her plea.