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SC asks Govt to consider regulating playing of national anthem

Oct 25, 2017, 00:52
SC asks Govt to consider regulating playing of national anthem

His remarks came after after the Supreme Court on Monday refused to modify its earlier order in connection with standing up during national anthem played before the beginning of a movie at cinema halls. Tomorrow someone may say people should not come in shorts and T-shirts in cinema halls as the national anthem is played there. As he also pointed out, government can take the call on the question of regulating the playing of the anthem in movie halls and other public spaces.

However, despite the hullabaloo, the November 2016 order hasn't been struck down, or recalled.

He said it was necessary to have a unifying force that can be brought about by playing the national anthem.

"People must feel this is my country and this is my motherland", the bench said, adding,"At the root of protocol for National Anthem, is respect for national identity, integrity and constitutional patriotism". The Supreme Court bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice Chandrachud turned down a plea by the Centre to not revisit the National Anthem order. Can you say this is disrespect to the national anthem?

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Justice Chandrachud disagreed. He said Article 51A is very broad and also makes it the fundamental duty of citizens to "develop scientific temper, humanism, spirit of inquiry", etc.

"What stops you from exercising your power". Justice Chandrachud observed and told Attorney General Venugopal that what the court was being asked to do could be done by the Centre. By passing the buck to the government, the SC in a way reminded one of its 2013 order on Section 377, in which case too it said that the government must legislate.

The order was a startling example of forced patriotism and ended up making the apex court look like a part of the wave of hyper nationalism that has a large section of the country's population is in grip. As Justice Chandrachud points out, the conflation of entertainment with mandatory displays of patriotism defeats the goal entirely.

The next hearing will be conducted on 9th January. "It's wrong to give anyone the badge of anti-national or "unpatriotic" as he is unwilling to stand for the national anthem". We do not know what the government wants.

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