Angry Hanuman: Story behind the famous angry Hanuman Stickers
The Angry Hanuman image, vector-style, is everywhere in Bengaluru, Dehradun and now in almost every city of our country. You can see them on public and private vehicles, on watch dials, on T-shirts, as laptop skins and other accessories – and everywhere it feels positively angry, almost confrontational, on the offensive.
That isn’t the means by which it was intended to be seen, however, as per Karan Acharya who made the vector-style figure. Acharya, a planner, and visual craftsman from Kumble village in Kasaragod, the northernmost area in Kerala, said he made the figure in 2015 when young men from a youth club in his town requesting that he outline something other than what’s expected to put on the banners for Ganesh Chaturthi.
Every year until then, the flag hoisted in the village had borne the symbol of Om.
Acharya, occupied with work, put off the demand to the point that the youngsters give him something the exact following day. “It was around 11.30 or 12 during the evening when I planned this face,” he said via telephone from Mangaluru, where he works. Acharya was just ready to complete the face when he sent the picture to his town, in spite of the fact that he is dealing with planning whatever is left of vector-Hanuman’s body straightaway. Once the picture showed up on a banner, it started to show up on his companions’ show and profile pictures crosswise over online networking stages.
Why is it so Popular?
Over the span of a previous couple of months, that picture has appeared in the most unforeseen of spots, including the back windows of vehicles in Bengaluru, Uttarakhand, Mumbai, Delhi etc. Its inescapability came as a mind-blowing wonder to Acharya on his last visit to the city.
“Since I designed this image for friends, I hadn’t put a watermark on it,” Acharya said. He has derived absolutely no royalty from the image, which frequently appears on merchandise as well. He was approached by a US-based company to sign away exclusive right of use, he said, but that did not feel right because so many people were already using it.
According to Acharya, vector-Hanuman is not angry at all. “My companions had told me to design something with an attitude, a Hanuman without a smile,” he said. “My Hanuman isn’t furious, he is simply attituding Hanuman.”
Hanuman frequently thought of as a lovable God, unswerving in his devotion to Rama, has always been depicted with attitude in calendar art.
What is the reason behind image Angry Hanuman?
“Hanuman is an inclusive God, and is worshiped by both the Shaivas and the Vaishnavas,” he said via telephone from Maharashtra. “To the Shaivas, he is the eleventh symbol of Rudra with the Raudra Roopa (angry or forceful face). This too is an old thought, and backpedals no less than a thousand years to the extent printed sources are concerned.”
Acharya’s Hanuman has been especially popular with those who lean towards the Hindu right, its saffron color contributing to the political hue. “We are living in the age, unfortunately, of simple messages when prime ministers and presidents communicate by tweets,” he said. “Images can carry a lot of different messages to different people.”
Acharya’s image was always intended for the youth – it has a graphic novel-like appeal. Girish Kumar, a taxi-driver who sported the Hanuman on the back of his car, said: “It is now in fashion. It is a strong, powerful look too.”
Where can I get one of them?
Srinath, a shopkeeper who sells stickers, is cashing in on the popularity of the image too – politics is not really on his mind. “A lot of the youth started asking for this sticker, and I have it in different sizes now,” he said. “Maybe it is a fashion now, maybe something else will be in fashion in a few months, I don’t know. I have to keep things that are in demand, it is good for business.” The vinyl stickers of the vector-Hanuman sell for anywhere between Rs 150 and Rs 300 depending on size, while T-shirts can sell for up to Rs 900.
What our PM Said on Angry Hanuman?
Updated: Speaking at Nehru Maidan, PM Modi said: “I want to applaud artist Karan Acharya whose Hanuman portrait has captured the imagination of people across India. This is a laudable achievement and is the power of his achievement, talent, and imagination. This is the pride of Mangaluru. All TV channels queued up for his interview.”