Clarifying on its earlier order, the Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that people are not obliged to stand up when the national anthem is played as and in part of a film or documentary.
The verdict also says that people don’t need to sing the national anthem when it is being played before the screening of a film. The apex court passed an order making it compulsory for all movie theatres to play the national anthem before each screening for what it called ‘the love of the motherland’.
The apex court’s verdict comes in the light of an incident in which a 59-year-old man from Mumbai was thrashed by a group at a cinema hall in the city, for not rising when the national anthem was being played during the film ‘Dangal’.
Also, ordering for the playing of National Anthem before the film starts accompanied by the showing of National Flag on screen. Earlier, SC stated that everyone present in the cinema halls must rise at the time of National Anthem playing and show respect towards it.
The full version should be played and not the edited part of the anthem. Also, that the National Anthem cannot be played in between the film for any commercial benefit, SC had directed reportedly.
On November 30, the court had ordered cinema halls across the nation to play the anthem before every movie screening and the audience must rise out of respect. The ruling was based on a petition by Shyam Narayan Chouksey, who runs an NGO in Bhopal.
The centre, calling the court’s order a “new beginning”, said the anthem should also be mandatory in schools “if we want to inculcate respect for the anthem among children”.
Citizens “are duty-bound to show respect to the national anthem which is the symbol of the constitutional patriotism,” the top court had said in the order.