Jaskaran Sandhu: Dutch Sikhs Demand An Apology For TV Segment Mocking Mool Mantar
Locals have called on Sikhs around the world to assist in demanding an apology from Beau van Erven Dorens and Timur Perlin, and share why a segment mocking the Mool Mantar is offensive to Sikhs
January 11, 2022 | 2.5 min. read | Original Reporting
Beau van Erven Dorens is the host of a popular talk show on RTL4, one of the Netherlands’ largest TV channels.
On January 6, 2022, he had Timur Perlin on as a guest. Timur is a local DJ well known for his radio segment ‘Mama Appelsap’ where he plays non-Dutch songs for the purpose of highlighting mondegreens, which in this case would be the mishearing and mischaracterization of non-Dutch lyrics into Dutch for comedic effect.
Beau, as part of his talk show, brought up one of Timur’s more controversial Mama Appelsap segments - the mocking of the Sikh Mool Mantar sung by Satkirin Kaur Khalsa in Lightness of Being.
Dutch Sikhs share that in the segment, Timur compares the lines of Ek Ong Kar – Sat Gurparsaad, with the following vulgar and sexual line in Dutch: ‘ik kom klaar, zet die hoer op u site’, which roughly translates into ‘I am coming (getting an orgasm), put the whore on your site’.
That original radio segment was from approximately a year ago and Timur had been approached by the Dutch Sikh community at the time. According to locals, Timur, due to the backlash and after some resistance, removed the YouTube video of the segment and promised not to play it anymore. One source shares that he was allegedly upset with deleting the video as it had a lot of views.
However, during his appearance on Beau’s show on RTL earlier this week, the segment was played again with added commentary that the Sikh community should not be complaining about their faith being mocked and attacked for entertainment purposes.
The discussion on Beau’s show was partly covered by local media.
“Beau van Erven Dorens states that the Sikh community should not whine” the headline reads in a piece from Media Courant, which shares the nature of the problematic dialogue and the backstory on Timur’s segment from a year ago.
Dutch Sikhs have expressed serious concerns about both Timur’s original segment and the latest offensive exchange on Beau’s TV talk show.
“We have limited influence due to the fact that we are a minuscule minority in the Netherlands. We have tried before to build pressure on Timur however it did not accomplish what we wanted (removal, apology, and a visit to the Gurudwara),” shared the Dutch Sikh Association via email.
Locals have called on Sikhs around the world to assist in demanding an apology and sharing why such a segment is offensive as the Dutch Sikh community is very small.
Varinder Singh is a volunteer and spokesperson with Sikhs United Netherlands, a humanitarian organization that provides aid in the country. He says that many have already complained about the segment to the TV station, but have yet to receive a formal response.
“The local Sangat is angry and wants the presenter to apologize,” he shares.
A spokesperson for the Dutch Sikh Association agrees and takes it a step further.
“Apart from a public apology, we will demand that they remove the [Beau] segment from [all RTL platforms].”
We have sent a request for comment to Beau but did not hear back at the time of publishing. We will continue to follow the incident and update this story accordingly.
Jaskaran Sandhu hails from Brampton, Canada, and is the co-founder of Baaz. He is a Strategist at the public affairs and relations agency State Strategy. Jaskaran also previously served as Executive Director for the World Sikh Organization of Canada and as a Senior Advisor to Brampton’s Office of the Mayor. You can find Jaskaran on Twitter at @JaskaranSandhu_
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