YouTuber Paras Singh was arrested in Punjab on Tuesday, 25 May, for racial slurs against Arunachal Pradesh MLA and Congress leader Ninong Ering, the police told PTI.
Earlier, Ering had asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ban the re-launch of PUBG Mobile India’s new game Battlegrounds Mobile India.
In a video posted on Sunday, Paras Singh who runs a YouTube channel by the name of ‘Paras Official’ responded to Ering’s demand by calling him a “non-Indian” and Arunachal Pradesh “a part of China”.
After a case was registered against Singh over the alleged racial hatred, he posted an apology on his YouTube channel. His mother had claimed that he was taken away by a few people and is now unaware of his whereabouts.
Singh has over 4.54 lakh subscribers on his channel.
How Did it Begin? What Did Paras Singh Say in the Video?
In a letter addressed to PM Modi, Ering said, “Re-launching the game was a mere illusion and a trick to collect user data of the citizens, including children and transfer it to foreign companies and the Chinese government.”
Ering said that if the game is allowed to relaunch, there is a “very high potential of a breach of privacy and cybersecurity of the citizens”.
Ering demanded a ban on the game and urged PM Modi to prevent the entry of any other banned apps in the future by just making “cosmetic changes”.
Singh then uploaded a video on his channel, in which he hurled racial slurs at Ering. This did not go down well with several social media users.
In the video, Singh can be seen checking Ering’s pictures on his Twitter profile while saying, “Mujhe toh nahi lagta yeh Indian hai (I don’t think he is an Indian),” adding that he wasn’t sure how people from Arunachal look.
Singh then went on to look for Arunachal Pradesh on the map of India and said: “Arre yaar yeh (Arunachal) toh China ki side me hai. Yeh China walon ka hi hai... ek tarah se unhi k saath hi hai halka fulka touch hota hai, India me aata hai. (This is on China’s side. It belongs to the people of China. In a way, they are with them (Arunachal is with China, touches India a little).”
YouTuber Apologises, His Mother Claims He’s Missing
After the backlash, Singh on Monday uploaded a video on his channel, apologising for his remarks.
“I know I have erred. What more do I do? Hang myself? I had uploaded a video yesterday, in which I had said something inappropriate at one point and I am sorry for it. I have deleted all those comments from the video. I had also pinned a comment on the same video admitting to my mistake. And I will be careful hereon,” he said.
“My family and I are being abused in comments on all my videos. If I am at fault, abuse me. But my family isn’t at fault,” he said.
Singh said that he had made the video in a fit of rage and that he is still a “kid” and wants one chance to correct his mistake.
Singh uploaded another video, in which his mother can be seen apologising on his behalf, saying that he is a “kid”.
Singh’s mother claimed that some people came to their house and took him away, saying that he was being taken to the police station. She claimed that she had no idea of his whereabouts.
Uproar Over Singh’s Remarks
Speaking to EastMojo, Ering said the “immature” comments made by Singh have not hurt him personally.
“He is free to point out mistakes, if any, but the racist remarks are serious and something that needs re-thinking,” Ering said.
An FIR was registered on the basis of a complaint filed by Ering.
Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu said a case has been registered against Singh under s 124A/ 153A/ 505(2) of the IPC.
Taking to Twitter, Khandu said: “Social media account of the person is being thoroughly investigated for details about his activities. Technical resources are being employed to gather his current whereabouts. Use of social media should be with due caution and any infringement will lead to action as per law.”
Arunachal Pradesh DGP R P Upadhyaya told EastMojo that a case of racial hatred was being investigated by the cyber crime branch in Itanagar.
Halley K Jamoh, a native of Pasighat has also lodged a complaint at the Pasighat police station, demanding stringent action against Singh under relevant sections of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 and Information Technology Act, 2000, EastMojo reported.
Several other political leaders also took to Twitter to condemn the remarks and said that such racism against the people from the northeast is rampant in India.
(With inputs from EastMojo.)
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