Jeremy Clarkson has done it again. The High Commission of India (HCI) in London has complained to the BBC over Top Gear’s 2011 Christmas special, filmed in India, deeming it “offensive” and full of “toilet humour”, the BBC News reports.
The 90-minute episode featured jokes about food and trains and a Jaguar car fitted with a toilet seat on its trunk and a toilet roll on its aerial “because everyone who comes here [to India] gets the trots.”
The HCI wrote to the BBC after it was contacted by “too many people” who were “very upset” by the program. “People are very upset because you cannot run down a whole society, history, culture and sensitivities,” one Indian diplomat told the BBC News.
The BBC, which itself has received 188 complaints about the show, said it would respond to the HCI in due course.
The HCI also took offence to a scene in the episode where Clarkson took off his trousers at a party to demonstrate a trouser press, and the banners “British IT is good for your company” and “Eat English muffins” which the team hung off the sides of a train, which became obscene when the train carriages separated and tore the banners in two, the Press Association reports.
In its letter to Top Gear’s producer and the director-general of the BBC, published in the Daily Telegraph, the HCI said the show “was replete with cheap jibes, tasteless humour and lacked cultural sensitivity.” It also went on to say the program “breached” the agreement between the Indian authorities and the BBC, stating that the outline of the program the HCI had been furnished with was very different from the finished product.
This is not the first time Top Gear has run into trouble because of comments by Clarkson and the show’s other hosts, Richard Hammond and James May. They have managed to offend the Mexicans, the Chinese, and striking workers in the U.K., to name a few. Each time, they have managed to escape with a mere slap on the wrist and an apology by the BBC to the offended party.
However, last month, members of Parliament told Lord Patten, the chairman of the BBC Trust, that Clarkson was a “luxury the BBC cannot afford” and should be sacked. While Clarkson has been able to deflect the blows so far, could this be the beginning of Clarkson’s end?