Naveen K Razak dances like a dream and will soon be a medical doctor who one hopes will put a smile on the faces of those he heals. His Instagram bio reads, “Take more chances. Dance more dances.” His collegemate Janaki Omkumar dances even better than him, and together they have lakhs of followers on social media, and millions of viewers of the coolest dance video that has gone viral. Razak and Omkumar are breaking the internet with their electrifying performance to Boney M’s ‘Rasputin’ that can still make for the best dance tracks as it first did in the late 1970s when it was released. The two danced in perfect teamwork, after classes, still in their scrubs. Bare faced and without a worry in the world they were a perfect dose of happiness in the middle of a work day on March 23.
However, the happy dance by a Muslim Naveen K Razak and Hindu Janaki Omkumar, both MBBS students of the Thrissur Medical College gave heartburn to a Kerala High Court attorney Krishna Raj, who according to Boomlive is also a ‘Hindutva sympathiser’. The man posted on Facebook, “Janaki M Omkumar and Naveen K Razak are the two students. I smell something wrong here. Janaki’s parents should be careful. And if they are careful, they won’t have to be sorry later, as Nimisha’s mother has proven. Let’s pray for Janaki’s father Omkumar and his wife.”
Raj was referring to the 2018, case of Nimisha, a dentistry student from Thiruvananthapuram, who converted to Islam, changed her name to Fathima and married a man named Esa. According to boomlive Esa had converted to Islam from Christianity. It was reported that Nimisha had left for Afghanistan to join the Islamic State, where they were arrested and themselves sought to return home to India. According to news reports Nimisha/Fathima’s mother Bindu Sampath filed a writ petition in Kerala High Court asking the Central government to help “rescue” her daughter and grandchild from ISIS. Raj used that example to allude that Janaki was at a similar risk because she was friends and dancing with Naveen.
Krishna Raj’s communal post got a lot of attention too. However while there were a few who agreed to the communal allegations there were thousands more who did not. Thousands stood up and spoke for the two medical students and by Friday evening another dance video this time by their college mates went viral. It was captioned: “If your plan is to hate, then we have decided to resist”. And soon enough hashtags #resisthate ##danceIsNotjihad took off.
Congress leader Shashi Tharoor too took to giving “applause and encouragement” and said this was the best of “Young India” that resists “Hindutva venom being spewed at them”.
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) April 10, 2021
Razak and Omkumar showed that they were too cool to be rattled and told the local media that they will ignore trolls. “We are new generation,” they said. According to news reports the Kerala wing of IMA-Medical Students’ Network also put out a solidarity post on Facebook, to stand in support of Omkumar and Razak. “Medical college campuses are a place where all the religious, caste, gender differences created by man become completely irrelevant. It reminds us that we are behaving, interacting, thinking and speaking human beings. Solidarity with both and those who are to come,” their statement read. “We are good friends. We are not affected by the comments. Even our families feel that these do not even deserve a response,” Janaki told Asianet News. “They are free to paint whatever colour they want for this. It is not going to affect us in any way,” added Naveen.
The two future doctors were seen dancing together in yet another video posted on Facebook by Kerala-based Club FM radio channel. This time it was an probably instantly choreographed number in step with a remixed Malayalam film song. They were as enthusiastic as ever. By saturday morning, Naveen had dropped another gem on instagram: “Calm like a Pigeon when we rest… Soar like a Hawk when we thrust”
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