Delhi HC dismisses plea, paves way for 'The Conversion' release
The Delhi High Court, on Friday, dismissed public interest litigation (PIL) seeking to restrain the release of the Hindi movie, The Conversion. The plea had noted the film, helmed by Vinod Tiwari, featured "communally charged content" with the "potential of provoking hatred among religious communities." But the court has refused to entertain this ground, saying, "Provocation depends upon mental attitude of people." Here's more.
All India Practicing Lawyers Council had filed the PIL, seeking an immediate deletion of the trailer from YouTube. The division bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh asked the petitioners whether their complaint was based on just the trailer, without taking the context of the entire movie under consideration. They noted a movie cannot be banned due to "one man's provocation."
Still, the bench has asked the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) to decide the representation taking into account the "law, rules, regulations, government policies applicable to the facts of the case," reported Live Law. "Someone may be provoked by anything, even without anyone saying a single word. Whereas some people may never be provoked, they are very cool and calm," the court said.
The MIB has been directed to take a call "expeditiously," keeping in mind The Conversion will be releasing on October 8 on YouTube and other platforms. The representation dated August 31 had been filed after the trailer of the movie was released online. Set in Benaras (Uttar Pradesh), the story deals with Love Jihad, where a Muslim boy marries a Hindu girl by force.
But protests against the Nostrum Entertainment Hub production had begun long back when makers had dropped a poster. Actress Vindhya Tiwari, who is the female lead, was seen donning Hindu clothing on one half while the other half was clad in a burkha. This had angered some netizens, who trended #BoycottTheConversionMovie. Prateek Shukla and Ravi Bhatia play the male leads in the movie.