The Supreme Court on Friday rejected a plea of a BJP leader and lawyer seeking playing of the national anthem in all courts before the start of proceedings. The judges said, “We are not inclined”.
A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy said that they are not inclined to entertain the plea of BJP spokesperson Ashwani Kumar Upadhyay after Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said that the petitioner should file a proper petition.
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court ordered that the national anthem should be played before the screening of every movie and told everyone is “duty-bound to show respect to the national anthem which is the symbol of the constitutional patriotism.”
The petitioner Ashwin Upadhyaya said, “It is a great order. The court can modify it to make it mandatory in all courts including the Supreme Court.”
But the court rejected the petition. The bench said, “Whether right or wrong, our order should not be overstretched.”
Soli Sorabjee, the government’s top lawyer in 1998-204 criticized the court’s ruling on the anthem in cinemas as “judicial overreach”. The former attorney said that the court’s intent is good but it could be done in a practical way. He stated the court must know its “lakshman rekha”.
He said that a court order cannot enforce patriotism, an individual should do it on his own.
The court also ruled that all the doors of cinema halls should be closed when the anthem is playing, so that no one can create any disturbance. The doors can be opened once the anthem is over. Many raised question on this, what if any emergencies like fire breaks out in a theater.