BHOPAL: On Wednesday, the Supreme Court, in an interim order, said that all cinema halls across the country should play the national anthem before and after the movie and that those present “must stand up in respect” to “in still a feeling within one a sense of committed patriotism and nationalism”.
In the next direction, the court also demanded that entry and exit doors be closed while playing the National Anthem.
In August 1986, a Supreme Court bench of Justices O Chinnappa Reddy and M. M. Dutt had, in Bijoe Emmanuel and Ors versus State of Kerala and Ors, granted protection to three children of the Jehovah’s Witness sect, who didn’t join in the singing of the national anthem at their school.
The court held that forcing the children to sing the anthem violated their fundamental right to religion.
The order kicked up a debate on whether forcing someone to sing the anthem infringes on certain fundamental rights. Free Journal spoke to some city people to know their opinion on it.
Saurabh Saxena, theatre and film actor
I think it is commendable decision. If we can play national anthem in sports ceremonies, whether it is cricket or any other game; then why not in theatres? We also go there for entertainment. After all, cinema and literature are mirrors of society. If we talk about patriotism on social media then what’s wrong if we give 52 seconds for our country.
Disha Malviya, student
I think, it is nice chance to show our patriotic feelings and we shouldn’t miss it. It’s true we go theatre for entertainment point of view but if we can see advertisements or trailer of upcoming movie then why not play national anthem. No mater where you are and what you see. But at the same time it’s also true that Jinke ander patriotic feeling hai hi nahi to aap chahkar bhi create nahi kar sakte.
Mohan Dwivedi, Programme director, Doordarshan
It is a good decision and we all Indian should welcome this. I think, it is national anthem and it is a suitable place for this because a large number of people are gathered here. See, Hindustan mein logon ko kisi bhi chheez ko karane ke liye bal dena padta. So I think, there is need of dictatorship. We should see thing on big canvas.
Sadat Bharti, theatre actor and director
See, nowadays we have started associating everything with nationalism and patriotism. India mein rahnewale har nagrik deshbhakt hai. It hardly matters which religion he or other belong to. We need not prove our patriotism. Patriotism cannot be thrust on anyone. Although, we can’t go against the Supreme Court’s decision but I personally think, this is not the right place for playing the national anthem. Also, by demanding that entry and exit doors be closed while playing the national anthem, the Supreme Court is ignoring its own earlier judgment in the Uphaar tragedy case where the court, for good reasons, had held that under no circumstances should doors to a cinema be shut from the outside. I think, neither government nor court should interfere in such matter.
Amruta Sambhalkar, art teacher
It is a totally wrong decision of the court. People go to theatres for entertainment. They go to watch different genres of movies, including adult only ones. Then, why to force them to be ‘patriotic’? I think a theatre is not the proper place for playing national anthem. Uchit jagah per hi play ho to jyada better hoga….
Prashant Mishra, journalist in Hindi daily
I think it is a foolish decision. People go to theatre for entertainment not for turning patriotic. Deshbhakti sabke dil mein hai then what’s need to show off. There are many shows of a film in theatre in a day, then how many times audience would perform this exercise. I think, ye deshbhakti se jayada ka mamla lagta hai…