If you want to laugh in cyberspace, then there is no shortage of spoofs, satires, hilarious videos, picture strips and memes relating to Indian politics and culture. The last few years has seen an absolute mushrooming of India-specific humorous content.
A look at some of the laugh sites...
1. AIB: All India Bakchod.
Before the current #AIBRoast controversy featuring Ranveer Singh, Arjun Kapoor and Karan Johar with its subsequent FIRs, AIB was doing very well. It came out with a lot of popular videos. At the height of the AAP hype, they had done "Nayak 2" and "Dharna Dance".
When Alia Bhatt became a laughing stock on Twitter, they came out with "Alia Bhatt -- Genius of the Year". They have taken up social causes like the video featuring Kalki Koechlin titled "Rape: It's Your Fault".2. TVF: TheViralFeverVideos.
Their counter to the TV anchor Arnab Goswami called "Bollywood Aam Aadmi Party : Arnab's Qtiyapa" became quite a rage in cyberspace. So much so that an Internet chat show called "Barely Speaking with Arnub" has been launched.
Bollywood superstar Shahrukh Khan kicked off that Internet show and the second one featured Ranveer Singh (he seems to be everywhere), Parineeti Chopra and Ali Zafar. Its spoof of Roadies was a hit and there are regular features like Permanent Roommates.3. URT: The Unreal Times.
They manage to capture the political pulse of the nation and turn it into big laughs. URT's "In Pics" section is probably their best and it is safe to say that the picture strip has replaced the comic strip (in India at least).4. Faking News.
This was the pioneer and the first really popular Indian humour site. It was also the first to go corporate after being taken over by the Network 18 group. It was started way back in 2008.
Some of their reports have been reported by other media sites as being true.5. The Vigil Idiot.
Its film reviews are priceless and are presented in a cartoon strip form. Profound and funny, they can totally blast a Bollywood plot to smithereens and go much beyond a bad film review by any critic and leave you smiling in the end.
There's another site called Minimal Bollywood Posters (http://minimalbollywood.com/
) which manages to present Bollywood film posters in quite a humorous way.6. Jay Hind.
While many stand-up comedians have their own daily shows in the US, that is something that never really took off in India. If you want to have a regular Indian version, then all you have to do is head to Jay Hind.
Their "Savita Bhabhi" videos have become quite popular.7. BeingIndian.
Particular funny are their "Every girl in the world" series featuring how girls from Delhi, Mumbai etc talk. They have come out with a video called "I Am Offended" which features all the stand-up artists speaking about humour in India along with its problems and challenges.
This is quite timely in the aftermath of the #AIBRoast controversy.No shortage of laughs elsewhere...
If you go on Twitter, then humour and parody accounts abound.
Some of the ones you can check out are...
@thevirdas @GabbbarSingh @KhapPanchayat @Roflindian @bhak_sala @rameshsrivats @Trendulkar @coolfunnytshirt @mojorojo
Funny Twitter trends rule many days like those related to Alok Nath, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant and Rohit Sharma or those titled #AreYouSerious #ArnabVsRahul #HellYeah #YoKejriwalSoHonest etc.
Random Thoughts of a Demented Mind (http://greatbong.net/
) has a refreshing and hilarious take on many current issues. Another parody blog called The Secret Journal of Rakesh Jhunjhunwala (www.rakeshjhunjhunwala.in/
) is hilarious but not updated regularly.
One of the first funny picture strips was Fly, you fools! (www.flyyoufools.com/
) but it was discontinued after 2011, though you can still check out the archive, which is a laugh riot.
There are TV shows that you can catch on YouTube like "So Sorry" (www.youtube.com/user/sosorrypolitoon
) and "The Week That Wasn't".
There's no shortage of stand-up comedians in India and you can catch their live shows updated on YouTube along with many Indian Americans in the US. Video clips of Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi end up being seeing more for fun than anything else.
Finally there is the common Indian citizen who is contributing greatly via blogs, Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp. Some of the funniest pieces of humour out there happen to be anonymous. The best examples are memes which usually go without by-lines.
Thanks to the Internet, India is truly entering the golden age of humour.Stand with #AIBRoast or not--Indian humour rocks!Open Letter to Jayanthi NatarajanAAP = Kejriwal's I, me and myselfOn the 4th-gen dynasty's 40-year misrule???When will media balloon around Kejriwal burst?
The author is a Bangalore-based journalist and blogger. He blogshere.