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College students, political events resist ban on BBC’s Modi documentary

BBC on Wednesday launched the second episode of the two-part documentary – ‘India: The Modi Query‘ – which instantly blames Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s position within the 2002 Gujarat riots when he helmeted the state as its chief minister.

The primary half was launched on January 19 and was shared by many on all social media platforms which inspired debates across the 2002 Gujarat riots and the position of then chief minister Narendra Modi through the riots that killed greater than tens of millions and displaced many, particularly Muslims.

The documentary collection reportedly reveals ‘never-seen-before’ or ‘restricted’ paperwork intimately. It seems on the escalating stress between the Muslim neighborhood and the Bharatiya Janata Celebration (BJP) in addition to Hindu right-wing organizations – Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

The documentary holds Modi instantly accountable for the riots and states that such large-scale mass homicide or in different phrases, a pogrom, was not doable with out regular assist from the state.

Modi authorities was fast to reply calling the documentary propaganda materials ‘designed to push a specific discredited narrative.’

The Ministry of Exterior Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Arindam Bagchi stated, “The documentary is a mirrored image on the company that has made it. We expect it’s a propaganda piece designed to push a specific discredited narrative. The bias, lack of objectivity, and persevering with colonial mindset are blatantly seen. Cannot dignify such a movie.”

Because the documentary created curiosity and buzz on the web, the Central Authorities banned its airing within the nation in addition to directed all social media platforms to take away any posts and hyperlinks pertaining to the documentary, making a protest name from netizens and Opposition events.

With the assistance of Rule 16 of the IT Guidelines, 2021 — formally often known as the Info Expertise (Middleman Pointers and Digital Media Ethics Code) Guidelines, 2021 — notified on February 25, 2021, describes the federal government’s energy with regard to “Blocking of data in case of emergency”.

The Ministry of Info and Broadcasting used emergency powers stating the documentary is predicated on a ‘colonial mindset’.

Following the ban, a number of pupil unions and political events throughout India screened or tried to display screen the documentary resulting in tensions or battle. Listed here are a couple of cities and states the place the documentary was screened.


In Hyderabad, the BBC documentary was screened on the College of Hyderabad (UoH) campus by a pupil group known as the Fraternity Motion. Round 200 college students turned up.

Nonetheless, members of the ABVP complained to the college registrar who then launched a press release saying no prior permission was taken by the scholars to display screen the movie.


The documentary was screened in numerous locations, together with schools, in Kerala on Tuesday with the BJP youth wing going up in arms in protest in opposition to the screenings.

In Thiruvananthapuram, the Youth Congress organized a screening at Manaveeyam Veedhi, a cultural area on Tuesday. The Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) held one at Poojappura Maidan.

Not simply Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala’s monetary capital Kochi noticed many screenings. The College students’ Federation of India (SFI) carried out screenings for college kids of the Cochin College of Science and Expertise, Kalady Sree Sankaracharya College of Sanskrit, Maharaja’s School Ernakulam, and Authorities Legislation School.

The Communist Celebration of India (Marxist) state secretary V Govindan got here out in assist of the screening saying, “Banning the documentary is an undemocratic stand. Beliefs shouldn’t be banned in a democratic society.”


In New Delhi, the Jawaharlal Nehru College (JNU) noticed the screening changed into a protest on Tuesday when pupil unions ignored the administration’s assertion to cancel the screening which was purported to happen on the identical evening at 9 pm.

The administration went forward and snapped present and web provide thus halting the screening. Nonetheless, decided college students began watching it on their laptops and telephones. Protests between the school authorities and college students broke out and incidents of stone pelting have been additionally reported.

On Wednesday, a day after the ruckus in JNU, college students at Delhi’s Jamia Milia Islamia college introduced it will display screen the banned BBC documentary at 6 pm.

Whereas there are stories that a number of SFI college students have been detained, the college has categorically stated that no permission was given for the screening.

“The College reiterates that no assembly of scholars or screening of any movie will likely be allowed on campus with out permission. College is taking all measures to stop individuals/orgs having vested curiosity to destroy peaceable tutorial environment right here”, the college stated in a round.

By the point of publishing this report, the Delhi Police have detained over 70 college students who have been gathered at Jamia Millia Islamia to protest in opposition to the detention of 4 activists over the proposed screening of a BBC documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the College students’ Federation of India stated.

Member of Parliament AA Rahim from CPM occasion has strongly condemned the detention which incorporates feminine college students additionally. In a tweet, he described the ban as a cowardly act by the Modi authorities. He demanded the speedy launch of the scholars.


SFI of Presidency College in Kolkata has requested for permission from the college’s administration to point out the banned BBC documentary on January 27 at 4 pm.

The coed union despatched an e mail to the college administration in search of permission to ebook the badminton court docket on the campus the place the screening will happen. The college is but to reply.


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