SC Modifies Order, Now National Anthem not Mandatory in Cinemas

SC Modifies Order, Now National Anthem not Mandatory in Cinemas

SC Modifies Order, Now National Anthem not Mandatory in Cinemas

He continued to fight for the respect of the national anthem and collected more evidences that showed people disrespecting it.

It is no longer mandatory for cinema halls to play the national anthem before screening a film.

Indian cinemas are free to decide if they want to play the national anthem before film screenings, according to a revised ruling by the country's Supreme Court.

The Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act states: "Whoever intentionally prevents the singing of the Jana Gana Mana or causes disturbances to any assembly engaged in such singing shall be punished with imprisonment for a term, which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both". Offenders would face penalty in the event they are found insulting the national anthem.

The Centre's decision had come after the top court in October past year observed that the people "cannot be forced to carry patriotism on their sleeves" and it can not be assumed that if a person does not stand up for the national anthem, he or she is "less patriotic". The said committee will submit its recommendations within six months after considering the representations that are made to it.

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On November 30, 2016, a bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy had passed an interim order that said, "All cinema halls in India shall play the national anthem before the feature film starts and all present in the hall are obliged to stand up to show respect to the national anthem".

This order came in right after Centre's affidavit which informed the top court it was in favour of modification of the November 2016 order, a complete turnabout from its previous stand on the issue.

The apex court had justified this directive to be looked at as an opportunity for the public to express their "love for the motherland".

The PIL had sought directions to the government to ensure the anthem was played in all cinemas, a protocol fixed for its singing and norms that specified what constituted disrespect and abuse of the song.

However, in October 2017, a bench, of which CJI Misra was also a part, questioned the logic of the judgment. Justice Chandrachud had said.

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