(Click here for the complete list of mob lynchings since 2015)
Dedicated to all those who think "Mausa ji ne bheja hai to sacch hi hoga" (if my uncle sent it, it must be true), the new mob lynching song "Bhediye" by youtuber Poojan Sahil featuring Dhruv Rathee talks about how WhatsApp forwards have become deadly for some in India.
In the wake of recent mob lynchings in India, many of which have been triggered by fake news circulated over WhatsApp, this parody of the song ‘Heeriye’ from the movie Race 3 takes to task a society that blindly believes in fake news and forwards.
‘Heeriye’ to ‘Bhediye’
In a prelude to the song, Dhruv Rathee, who is a vocal critic of the government, says that it has become too easy to make fools of people. But Sahil sings that people who uncritically believe whatever they read are worse than Biplab Deb, the Chief Minister of Tripura who is often in the headlines for his absurd and unverified statements.
Nafraton ke chaare mein jab, fake news milaate hain, tab insaan na rahke, ye ban jaate hain.. bhediye (fake news and hate together make wolves out of individuals).The lyrics to Poojan Sahil’s song
Comparing the mob to a pack of wolves, the singer's hard-hitting verses convey a strong message: a society that can kill solely on a message "forwarded as received" is a society that is truly evil, or as the song would say: illogical.
Since May 2018, at least 19 deaths in India have been caused by WhatsApp-borne rumours.
Mob violence, driven by child-lifting rumours circulated on WhatsApp, have plagued states across the country. In Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and most recently Maharashtra’s Dhule, people were lynched by a mob on the suspicion that they are child-lifters.