American comedian's tweet on Abhinandan sends Indian social media into a frenzy

Published: April 6, 2020
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Edited photo shows the smiling US comic and the Indian pilot sipping tea with the caption 'stay home, stay safe'.PHOTO: TWITTER/(@JeremyMcLellan)

Edited photo shows the smiling US comic and the Indian pilot sipping tea with the caption 'stay home, stay safe'.PHOTO: TWITTER/(@JeremyMcLellan)

American comedian Jeremy McLellan has once again managed to rile up social media users in India after posting an edited photo of himself with Indian pilot Abhinandan Varthaman.

In the image, the roughed up pilot can be seen sipping on the now iconic cup of tea given to him during his 60-hour capture in Pakistan in February last year with the wreckage of downed Indian Air Force (IAF) Mig-21 in the background.

The comic, who is known for his love of everything Pakistani, took a sly dig at Indians by using the caption “Stay Home, Stay Safe,” which has been doing the rounds on social media as a part of global campaign to get people to socially isolate amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The post sparked fury among Indian social media users but the comedian continued with his trolling. “Why are Indians messaging me saying he’s a hero. I know he’s a hero that’s why I gave him tea and took a picture with him,” he tweeted later.

It was clear that the post had struck a ‘sensitive nerve’ across the border with McLellan then going on to share a screenshot of a message an Indian Twitter user had sent him.

In Pakistan, unsurprisingly, there was much joy at the post.

It also resulted in a cascade of posts, with one user putting up a picture of the Indian pilot getting treatment from medics in Pakistan.

The comic was not done there, as he then posted another edited photo of himself with his arm around a smiling Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Because of your angry messages I would like to announce that I am now pro-India and anti-Pakistan. Apparently India has more people/money and is ruled by my wise and powerful step-dad Modi. They also invented space ships 7,000 years ago. Excited for my upcoming comedy tour!”

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