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What are #pray_for_Neasamani Vadivelu memes all about?

Vadivelu as contractor Nesamani in the movie ‘Friends’. The movie stars Vijay in the lead role.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Famous Tamil comedy artist Vadivelu found himself in the midst of a tweet storm from Wednesday evening after a Facebook user posted, on a page called ‘Civil Engineering Learners’, a picture of a hammer and asked what it’s called in other countries. The page reportedly originates in Pakistan and shares various aspects of civil engineering. The comments which followed ensured the hilarious turn of events.

 

One of the users, Vignesh Prabhakar replied it was called ‘Suthiyal’ in Tamil and went on to refer to a famous character portrayed by Vadivelu in the 2001 Tamil film Friends, where the hammer falls on the actor’s head and he falls unconscious. He plays the character of a building contractor supervisor.

What are #pray_for_Neasamani Vadivelu memes all about?

In the movie, Vadivelu’s character ‘Neasamani’ often falls victim to to his employees (’apprentices’) antics. Mr. Prabhakar referred to Neasamani’s character without explaining the context, leading to some users believing that the hammer fell on a real person’s head. This spawned a number of hilarious comments as Vadivelu fans began commenting on the series of comical incidents that happens with Neasamani in the movie.

 

Replying to the comment made by Mr. Prabhakar, one FB user replied that he will pray for Neasamani. “Tell them all to take care of him”, he said unaware of the side-splitting tweets that was to ensue. As screenshots began doing the rounds, #pray_for_Neasamani started trending on Twitter on Wednesday evening.

By Thursday morning, the tweets #pray_for_Neasamani was trending on top across India and at No.6 worldwide, while another #Nesamani was trending at No. 3 worldwide, after the comedian’s fans unleashed memes and made references to many of Vadivelu’s film scenes.
 

Former Indian spinner, Harbhajan Singh, who plays for the Chennai Super Kings in the IPL, picked out a scene of Vadivelu wearing a yellow turban and said the incident wouldn’t have happened if only the comedian had worn the yellow turban at that time. Chennai Super Kings, meanwhile tweeted a picture of Dhoni, with the message ‘The only man who could’ve saved Contractor Nesamani with his epic reaction time in now in England!”

What are #pray_for_Neasamani Vadivelu memes all about?
 

Twitterati also began making up their own stories relating the scene to many of Tamil Nadu’s recent political developments, including that of late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa’s hospitalisation at Apollo Hospitals, and the statements many of her partymen made at that time regarding her health condition. They also used ‘Neasamani’s situation’ to poke fun at some political leaders. Many fans also asked for a CBI inquiry into the ‘incident’ of the falling hammer and the setting up of an enquiry commission.

Not all was just fun though. A police officer made use of the hashtag to advise citizens to wear a helmet while riding a bike and ensure their safety, while a paint company decided to market its services claiming that the company’s painters were more professionally qualified than the character who drops the hammer on Neasamani’s head. Some also used a picture of Vadivelu visiting a police station in a film, to ask for the tracing of missing activist Mugilan.

Ironically, someone tried to make use of the hashtag by asking people to donate to a bank account, before another Twitter user called it out as fake.

On Thursday morning, as the trend picked up worldwide traction, many fans changed their Twitter prefix with ‘Contractor’, just the way Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his party cadre, and his supporters prefixed ‘Chowkidaar’ before their Twitter names during the elections.

Vadivelu is now being seen very rarely on screen leaving millions of his fans disappointed at his rather minimal screen presence, and often refer to his dialogues in various real life situations, and on social media.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 2:59:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/internet/what-is-the-prayforneasamani-vadivelu-memes-all-about/article27318942.ece

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