Supreme Court Orders Theatres to Play National Anthem before Movie Screenings

As per today’s Supreme Court verdict, it is mandatory for all theatres to play National Anthem before screening of films. The National Flag should be screened at the time of playing and everyone should stand and honour the National Anthem.

Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered all theatres and multiplexes in India to play “National Anthem” at the very beginning before screening movies. People should stand and pay respect and the National flag should be screened on screw when the National Anthem is played.

Responding to the petition filed by Shyam Narayan Chouski, who runs an NGO in Bhopal on disrespecting and misuse of National Anthem in TVs and movies, Court said, “National Anthem should not be commercially exploited or dramatized or printed on objectionable material.”

“When the national anthem is played it is imperative for everyone to show honour and respect. It would instill a sense of committed patriotism and nationalism,” Court added.

Court has provided 10 days time for the Centre and the States to implement the order. The central government said an official Government Order will be issued to all states’ chief secretaries and will also promote and publish it on electronic and print media.

Before 1960s it was mandatory to play Anthem in all theatres after every movie, but the custom was faded away over the year, especially after the arrival of multiplexes. In 2003, Maharashtra ordered to play Anthem before screening of movies, however, it is not essential for people to stand when it was played. There are several controversies over the movie because people were beaten up for not standing up for Anthem.

There has been long debate over this traditional customary, with some supporting and others opposing it. There are several incidents reported that people were not allowed to watch movies for not standing when Anthem is played.

Today, Supreme Court has put an end to the long debates and controversies, making it mandatory to Play National Anthem in all theatres. It’s a good move which should be appreciated, and at the same time, we request people to pay respect to our National Flag and National Anthem.


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