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National Anthem before Movie Screening in Cinema Halls? Here is what Common People and Film Stars have to Say!

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Representational image. Pixabay

November 30, 2016: The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered that the National Anthem has to be played in cinema halls across the country before the start of a movie, as it will “instil a sense of committed patriotism and nationalism” in citizens.

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As soon as the news broke out, people started giving out different opinions on the matter. While some dealt it with sarcasm considering it to be an ‘imposed’ patriotism on them; others have welcomed the change.

[bctt tweet=””Last year, I visited Bangladesh, and they too follow the same.”” username=””]

While in conversation with NewsGram, Animikh Chakrabarty, a postgraduate student of Film Studies at the Jadavpur University said, “It is an unnecessary and forced dose of patriotism, suddenly makes us think about fascist countries that play the national anthem and preaches national propaganda through TV and film. A film viewer enters a theater to be committed towards the film, as a viewer, not to be force fed with some other patriotic commitment.”

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Soumyadeep Mandal, a Kalyani University student of Mass communication said, “In the field of entertainment, imposing National Anthem doesn’t make sense. It will be rather disrespectful.”

On the other hand, Rakin, a TV actor who is well-known for his role as “Dev in a Bengali TV serial “Raashi” considers it to be a “good move”. He says, “Last year, I visited Bangladesh, and they too follow the same. When I saw them all standing up in honour of their national anthem in the cinema hall, I felt it’s really a good practice. In fact, what was playing in my mind was, why don’t we have anything like that? I think, it’s a great initiative.”

According to a HT report, actress Taapsee Pannu considered it to be a great initiative and said ,“I’ve always loved watching National Anthem play on screen. In Delhi, I never saw it, but since I’ve been in Mumbai for last few years, I’ve started missing it when I go back to Delhi. I don’t know if it will influence anyone or change the thinking because it’s a very subjective thing and everyone views everything in different perspective. But I’m really happy and proud.”

Actor Kunal Kohli said, “Standing up for the anthem should be a natural reflex action and no court should be telling anyone to stand and respect the National Anthem.”

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Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar said to HT, “I think it’s a welcome decision. Earlier in the 70s, they used to play but I don’t know why they stopped. Today’s judgment is a landmark in our history and it’s a proud moment for every Indian. Our country is full movie goers and everyone should be proud of this judgment.”

– prepared by Pinaz Kazi of NewsGram. Twitter: @PinazKazi

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US: Supreme Court Blocks Administration’s Effort to Add Citizenship Question on Census

The citizenship question was meant to better enforce the Voting Rights Act

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US, Supreme Court, Citizenship
FILE - Demonstrators protest during a Fair Maps rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court, in Washington, U.S., March 26, 2019. VOA

U.S. President Donald Trump responded Thursday to the Supreme Court’s decision to block his administration’s effort to add a citizenship question to the upcoming U.S. census by saying he’d asked his lawyers whether there was a way to delay the nationwide head count.

In a tweet hours after the court announced its decision, Trump said it “seems totally ridiculous” that the government could not question people about their citizenship on the census, which takes place once every 10 years.

The Supreme Court ruled the administration’s explanation — that the citizenship question was meant to better enforce the Voting Rights Act — was “more of a distraction” from the issue than an explanation.

Opponents of the citizenship question say it would intimidate noncitizens into not answering the census, ultimately leaving them underrepresented in Congress.

US, Supreme Court, Citizenship
U.S. President Donald Trump responded Thursday to the Supreme Court’s decision to block his administration’s effort. Pixabay

Chief Justice John Roberts joined the court’s liberal justices in the 5-4 ruling.

 The nation’s highest court also announced Thursday that it was rejecting a request to intervene in states’ redistricting efforts.  Redrawing the boundaries of voting districts is meant to ensure proportional representation in state legislatures as the population grows and changes locations.

Republicans in the state of North Carolina and Democrats in the state of Maryland have been accused of redrawing the lines of voting districts to keep power in the hands of the ruling party.

The chief justices said manipulation of the electoral map, a practice known colloquially as gerrymandering, is a problem for state governments to solve, not the Supreme Court.

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Thursday was the final day of rulings by the Supreme Court before its summer break. (VOA)