India’s national anthem must be played in all cinema halls before a movie starts, ruled the Supreme Court today. The order would come into force in ten days’ time.The apex court also said the playing of the national anthem must be accompanied by an image of the tricolour on the silver screen.
It will also be mandatory for every member in the audience to stand up and pay their respects to the anthem, the apex court added. In further directives to the government, the Supreme Court said the national anthem should not be printed or displayed on undesirable objects. There should not be any dramatisation of the national anthem too, it added. The court has also barred any playing of the abridged version of the anthem.
A bench of Justice Dipak Misra and Justice Amitava Roy said that this would instil feeling of constitutional patriotism and nationalism. The bench said: “It is the duty of every citizen to abide by the ideals ingrained in the Constitution and as such show respect to the National Anthem and the national flag.”
“The national anthem is a matter of national integrity, unity and identity and as well as constitutional patriotism,” the apex court said in its ruling.The court’s order came on a public interest litigation (PIL) by Shayam Narayan Chouksey seeking framing of guidelines on the playing of the National Anthem.
In October, writer Salil Chaturvedi, also a wheel-chair bound paraplegic, was assaulted by a couple in a Goa movie hall for not standing for the national anthem. The incident had triggered a massive outrage.