Supreme Court makes playing of National Anthem compulsory at all film screenings

December 1, 2016 1:31:07 PM IST
By Vishal Verma, Glamsham Editorial
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The Honorable Supreme Court of India yesterday passed a judgment making it mandatory for all cinemas in India to play the national anthem before the commencement of every commercial film screening.


Giving the judgement, the Supreme Court bench comprising justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy reportedly said, “The time has come when people must respect the national anthem which is part of constitutional patriotism. People must feel that it is their country. It is because of the country that they are enjoying freedom and liberty.”

Previously, National Anthem was played only in the state of Maharashtra in India. Following the judgment all theatres in India will be required to play the National Anthem before the screening of the commercial film and Court has given a deadline of ten days to theaters.

And that's not all, according to reports the National Anthem must be accompanied by images of the Indian flag and cinema audiences must rise and remain standing for its duration. Cinema exits must remain closed while the anthem is playing as people walking in and out constitutes disrespect, the court has reportedly said. 

This is a significant twist in the history of National Anthem played in Indian cinema theatres. The 1911 song ‘Jana Gana Mana' by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore used to be played in cinemas after the screening of films during 1940's but reportedly the practice was stopped during the 60's. Now it will be played across all cinema halls in India.

It must be recalled that around 15 years back, a person by the name Shyam Narayan Chouksey filed a PIL after feeling ‘hurt' when he was asked to sit down when he stood up during a scene in Karan Johar's KABHIE KHUSHI KABHI GHAM where the national anthem was being played.

It is reported that the Supreme Court order is in response to Chouksey's PIL. However, the order is debated by some pseudo intellectuals in the name of ‘freedom' and Bollywood being ‘used' again and made a soft target.


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