A day after a section of Youth Congress activists stormed into few Kolkata movie theatres during the screening of THE ACCIDENTAL PRIME MINISTER, authorities of multiple cinema halls across the city on Saturday decided to suspend shows of the controversial movie indefinitely, citing safety and security concerns of the spectators.
Besides Inox Hind in central Kolkata's Ganesh Chandra Avenue area, where Youth Congress supporters staged demonstration on Friday morning, authorities of north Kolkata's Star Theatre, central city's Roxy Talkies and Prachi, and south Kolkata's Menoka and Ashoka (Behala) have stopped the screening of THE ACCIDENTAL PRIME MINISTER since Saturday morning.
Authorities of those movie theatres said that the shows have been suspended over safety and security concerns, and there was no direction from the state government or police to stop the screening of the controversial film.
Earlier on Friday, hours after demonstrating at Inox Hind cinema hall, Congress activists staged agitation in front of Indira cinema at Bhawanipore area and later in late evening, a large number of Youth Congress workers attacked posh movie theatre Inox Insignia at Quest Mall near Ballygunge area in south Kolkata.
Besides tearing apart the screen, agitators asked spectators to leave the theatre immediately.
Meanwhile, another single-screen cinema hall at Pradhan Nagar area in northern West Bengal's Siliguri area also witnessed massive protest and demonstration over THE ACCIDENTAL PRIME MINISTER's screening on Friday.
Indian National Congress (INC)'s West Bengal unit, West Bengal Pradesh Congress Committee (WBPCC) as well as its youth wing, West Bengal Youth Congress Committee (WBYCC), claimed that Indian Youth Congress (IYC) had no association with any one staging protest at cinema halls during the screening of The Accidental PM.
"INC or IYC leadership did not direct us to stage any demonstration at cinema halls during the screening of the movie and our party is neither holding agitation at movie theatres nor forcing authorities to stop screening," WBYCC vice-president, Rohan Mitra, told IBNS.
"We do believe in freedom of speech and expressions and we leave it to the wisdom of the people to make a judgement on such agenda driven spin-off," Rohan Mitra added.
However, clearing West Bengal government's stand on the controversial movie, WB minister of state for Information and Cultural Affairs, Indranil Sen, said, "There is no order from the state government to suspend the screening of THE ACCIDENTAL PRIME MINISTER or any other movie in the cinema halls of West Bengal."
A senior official of Kolkata Police said that security had been beefed up at the cinema halls across the city during the screening of The Accidental Prime Minister.
"By deputing additional police units, we have strengthened security at the movie theatres in Kolkata where the film is being screened," the police official told IBNS.
Since the trailer of controversial movie The Accidental Prime Minister, which reportedly explores Manmohan Singh's tenure as the Indian Prime Minister, was out and its release date was announced, Congress leaders have been claiming that the film was just an "incorrect presentation of facts".
Pleas to ban the movie have been filed before several courts while multiple police complaints have been registered against actor Anupam Kher, who played the role of Manmohan Singh in the film.