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SC Makes National Anthem Optional in Cinema Halls

Published on January 10, 2018
The Supreme Court has modified it's November 30, 2016, interim order and made it optional for the cinema halls to play the National Anthem before every show.

SC Makes National Anthem Optional in Cinema Halls

  • A three-judge Bench led by CJI Dipak Mishra clarified that it is not mandatory to play the national anthem before every show.
  • The choice of whether to play the national anthem or not is left to the discretion of the individual cinema hall owners.
  • However, if the cinema hall owner chooses to play the national anthem before the screening people are bound to stand up in respect.
  • Exceptions granted to the disabled persons will remain in force.
  • The Home Ministry has appointed a 12 member inter-ministerial committee which will take a final call on the playing of the national anthem in cinema halls and public places.
  • The government through the Attorney General has urged the court to dilute its earlier order mandating the national anthem to be played before every movie screening in the cinema halls on the grounds that the Home Ministry’s new committee was looking into it.
  • The Committee is led by Additional Secretary B R Sharma. It will recommend the changes in the existing laws if required.
  • The modifications will be in place till the Union government takes a final decision on the recommendations of this committee.
  • The committee will submit its report in six months. It will examine whether any amendments are necessary to the Prevention of Insult to National Honour Act of 1971 to expand the meaning of respect to the National Anthem.

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