New Delhi: Aditya Tiwari, a 23-year-old rapper based in Delhi, was traced by the police to Madhya Pradesh’s Jabalpur Thursday, a week after he allegedly went missing.
Tiwari, who is known as MC Kode in hip hop circles, went “missing” on 2 June after posting an ambiguous note on Instagram, which hinted at the possibility of suicide.
This was after a six-year-old video of his surfaced on social media, in which he was purported to have disrespected Hinduism. He was severely trolled and criticised for the video, and even hashtag #ArrestMcKode trended on social media for some time.
Justifying the nonsense being spoken against one religion! @RollingStoneIN it is important to understand the culture of a country before being woke & hip! #MCKode #ArrestMCKode https://t.co/nlrQI4EQrL
— Shalini Tiwari 🇮🇳 (@shaltiwari) June 3, 2021
#arrestmckode this kind of people should be punished so that no one like him make jokes on Hinduism
— Rajesh Bhati (@RajeshB39741081) June 6, 2021
His note, which was posted on Instagram’s ‘Stories’ feature, read: “The constant suffering and trials and tribulations of life have made me weak. Currently standing at an isolated bridge overlooking the Yamuna I do not blame anyone for anything but myself. A relief from my own existence is gonna serve as a punishment that the entire country wanted.”
Tiwari’s mother, Deepa Tiwari, filed a missing person’s complaint on 4 June at the Mehrauli police station, and a case of kidnapping was registered the next day.
“After the rapper went missing, his mother told us that he had left from his home in Saidulajab after posting a suicide note on Instagram. His last phone location was found in Noida but it was switched on later. During further investigation it was found that Tiwari is in Madhya Pradesh,” a senior police officer told ThePrint.
According to the police, Tiwari is believed to have contacted his friend in Jabalpur after leaving Delhi.
“As our teams were trying to trace Aditya Tiwari, we received information from our informer that he could be at a particular friend’s house in MP. When our teams reached the spot, he was found there,” DCP South Atul Kumar Thakur said.
The police are yet to question Tiwari on his whereabouts after going missing.
Speaking to ThePrint, his mother Deepa said she now felt relieved.
“The possibility of Aditya taking the extreme step of ending his life always existed, it was extremely difficult and frightening,” she said.
Deepa said social media had become “extremely dangerous”. “Social media has become very dangerous, youngsters with low levels of maturity are constantly on it, so they don’t know how to tackle it. Hence this requires a manoeuvring technique in terms of taking action against trolling.”
Threatened with lynching, address leaked: Tiwari’s family
The video that had surfaced on social media was an old rap battle featuring Tiwari when he was 17 years old. After the severe backlash, the rapper had apologised on Instagram and mentioned that nine brands had cancelled endorsement deals with him and three of his gigs were cancelled too.
“I am sorry to everyone whose sentiments have been hurt due to what I said. I was a teenager back then, looking for cheap reactions and never realised the consequences and since then I have grown into a person who hates his teenage years because of my own stupidity,” he wrote in his apology note.
However, the threats and abuses continued and his family claims that it pushed him to post the suicidal note on Instagram and disappear.
His mother also alleged that the 23-year-old was receiving threats of mob lynching, and that his address was also leaked on social media.
“The address of the flat where Aditya stayed with his friends was leaked and a group of 8-9 people in cars had reached the house, on 26 May. Luckily he wasn’t at home,” Deepa told ThePrint.
MC Kode is a popular name in the national capital’s underground hip hop circuit and he is also one of the founders of Spit Dope Inc — a platform for emcees that organise rap battles.
Several prominent rappers like Raftaar and DIVINE had also put up posts on social media when Tiwari had gone missing.