Supreme Court issues notice to Centre on please challenging government blocking 2 parted BBC documentary series
The Supreme Court on Friday issued a notice to the Centre over appeals against the ban on the much talked about BBC documentary series India: The Modi question. The series covers the learnings of 2002 Gujarat riots and PM Modi’s link to it.
The Apex Court bench comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna and MM Sunderesh while hearing the matter, instructed the Centre to submit the original records of the order to the court. The Apex court said that it can’t pass interim directions until it heard the Centre’s take on the matter.
The Apex Court’s direction to Centre for the original orders is expected to be produced before the court in the next hearing which will be in April 2023.
The Supreme Court Bench was hearing the joint petition filed by Journalist N Ram, Supreme Court Advocate Prashant Bhushan and Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra. The Apex court were also hearing another petition filed by Advocate ML Sharma.
According to reports, the government of India had ordered YouTube and Twitter to take down links shared about the BBC documentary. The order by the Centre was given on January 20 and the officials had reasoned the order by the centre by citing that the BBC documentary undermines the sovereignty and integrity of India and also said that the BBC documentary has the potential to harmfully impact India’s friendly relations with foreign states.
The government invoked emergency powers to pass the the order of censoring the BBC documentary. The order was passed under the provisions of the IT rules, 2021.
After the ban on the documentary in the Country, the Opposition parties slammed the ruling BJP terming the orders of censorship. Some opposition parties including Congress and Student outfits also organised a screening of the documentary.
The screening of the BBC documentary India: The Modi question added on to the ongoing row as the students clashed with the university administration and the police in order to organise screening of the two-parted series. The universities which saw clashes between the student outfits and the administrations include Delhi University, Ambedkar University, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Jamia Millia Islamia University.
The government has dubbed the documentary to be a propaganda piece and questioned the objectivity. The Centre also hit out at the Documentary by the BBC stating that the documentary reflects a colonial mindset.