Rapper Honey Singh, who was forced to cancel his scheduled New Year’s Eve show following protests against the backdrop of the recent brutal gang-rape incident, sought on Tuesday to wash his hands off the controversy triggered by offensive lyrics in some of his songs.
Singh (28), who has sung for several Bollywood movies, said he had not authored the lyrics that are being attributed to him. The lyrics have been termed offensive towards women by activists, who have started an online campaign against Singh.
A first information report has also been lodged against the rapper in Lucknow. When contacted, his manager Anup Kumar claimed the Gurgaon show was cancelled not because of the protests but in solidarity with the Delhi gang-rape victim.
“We did not cancel the show because of this petition and FIR. We cancelled it in the wake of the Delhi gang-rape issue. This is not the first concert we are cancelling in Delhi after that horrific incident. We had also cancelled our much publicised December 25 event,” Mr. Kumar told PTI.
Bristol Hotel, however, disputed Singh’s version, saying it was the management and not Singh who decided to cancel the performance.
Singh has also issued a public notice claiming he is not the author of the lyrics.
“Singh wishes to clarify through this notice that he has no connection whatsoever with the said songs. My client has already written to various digital platforms to immediately take down the video/songs and is also considering appropriate legal action for defamation, loss of reputation and violation of privacy,” read a notice by his lawyer Pragyan Pradip Sharma.
The FIR was lodged on the complaint by IPS officer Amitabh Thakur, said police sources in Lucknow. It was registered under Sections 292, 293 and 294 of the Indian Penal Code (related to obscenity).
An online petition is also doing the rounds against Singh by Kalpana Misra via change.org, who appealed for a ban on his performance. “These pornographic lyrics are unacceptable and it is because of women-hating sentiments like these that men think that it’s fine to do what they did on that bus that December night in Delhi. Let’s put a stop to these subversive lyrics that infiltrate the minds of people who don’t know better and who then justify to themselves the rightness of a crime that harms another human being, sometimes so severely that they lose their lives,” the petition stated.
Outrage against the rapper and his songs has been pouring on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter for the past few days. Singh raps mostly in a mix of English and Punjabi and has lent his voice in recent Bollywood films like Khiladi 786, Cocktail and Luv Shuv Te Chicken Khurana.