An advertisement video posted by travel agency Yatra.com recently, spoofs the now-famous Azadi speech by JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar who was arrested for sedition, stayed in jail for three weeks and was later released on six-months’ bail on March 3.
The 1.15 minute-long advertisement posted on Saturday evening features a look-alike of Kanhaiya, who also speaks with a similar accent. It begins with the man asking a receptionist at an airport for a window seat - he says, “Bindow seat dijiye na, please.” And the receptionist replies, “Sorry sir, window seats booked hain.” He then picks up a mike and starts chanting, “Kya hume itni bhi azadi nahi hai ki hum apni marzi ke seat par baith sakein? Arre hume chahiye azaadi.
Arre leke rahenge azaadi. Apni seat chunane ki azaadi. Window seat ki azaadi. No waiting ki azaadi. Lambi line se azaadi Arre yatri ekta.” (Can’t we have at least the freedom to choose our own seats? We want freedom. We will get our freedom. Freedom to choose our seats, Freedom of window seats. Freedom of no waiting. Freedom from long queues. Passengers unite!).
The ad makers saved the worst lines for the end. The video ends with a voice-over saying, “Don’t do naarebaazi, just do samajhdaari,” ridiculing protesters of all kinds, especially the one being aped here.
Here’s a glimpse of what Kanhaiya had to say when he was released from jail after getting bail in sedition charges: “Hum leke rahenge azaadi. Jaatiwaad se azaadi. Poonjiwad se azaadi.”
With the ad, Yatra.com not only spoofs Kanhaiya Kumar but also makes fun of the lower middle-class in our country that struggles for lack of choices.
Yatra.com seems to have forgotten the flak that food and beverages company Pepsi recently got for the ad that made fun of FTII students who were on strike.
Yatra captions the advertisement as “To all those who’ve heard “sorry” way too frequently at airport check-ins, we understand you, we’re with you, and we have the perfect solution for you! #YatraWebCheckIn”.