Punjabi rapper Honey Singh has been hauled up by the Punjab and Haryana High Court for his obscene song `Main Hoon Balatkari.’
The court has ordered the singer to appear before it on May 14 in response to a public interest petition filed by an Punjab-based NGO called HELP.
The NGO has moved the high court to come down with heavy hand on vulgarity in Punjabi songs these days. The petitioner has asked the court to order the state government to set up policy mechanisms such as a censor board to stop the vulgarity and obscenity in the music industry.
The petition said Honey Singh’s song `Main Hoon Balatkari’ has passed limits of obscenity and posed a threat to women’s decency. Such vulgarity in the garb of music threatened women’s fundamental “right to life,’’ the petition said, adding that such songs fall within the purview of Section 294 of the Indian Penal Code which bans such songs in public places.
The NGO blamed the Punjab government for not doing anything to curb growing vulgarity in songs.
Honey Singh’s song came under severe criticism after the Delhi gangrape in December and his New York concert in Gurgaon was cancelled by the organizers under pressure from various groups as nationwide protests swept India.
A virulent campaign to boycott Honey Singh and his music was launched on several micro-blogging sites. An FIR was also lodged against Honey for obscenity in Lucknow.
At that time, Honey Singh had claimed that the offensive song is not his at all. “I swear on my music, I’ve neither written nor sung those offensive songs. I’d never dream of singing a song in praise of rape. The thought is nauseating to me. I’d rather give up singing than attain popularity in such cheap and cheesy ways.”
Honey says the song has been released on the internet by an imposter. “I’ve sent notices to Youtube and other websites which have uploaded the offensive number. I am shocked that such a song could even be believed to be mine. I come from a family where women are respected. And I’d never disrespect women by espousing rape.”
Honey had also claimed that the other obscene song entitled ‘Ch..t’ which was floating on the internet for years under his name is not his. “I completely disown both these obscene numbers. I’ve nothing to do with them. My lawyers are trying to find out who’s doing this to malign me. I’m being targeted for a rape of another kind altogether.What is being done to me is among the lowest of violation of human dignity.”
Honey said the smear campaign was undertaken by jealous rivals. “They can’t bear to see a villager from Hoshiarpur like me become so successful. My fans know the truth. I’d never disrespect women.I have been brought up to treat women with courtesy and dignity.”