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#Censorship – Patwardhan’s film on Ram temple pulled after ‘threats’ in Pune #WTFnews

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No show: Patwardhan’s film on Ram temple pulled after ‘threats’
Patwardhan said a student of the college had called him on Friday and informed him that students had received threats over the screening, because of which the film had to be pulled out.
MUMBAI/PUNE: In what appears to be a case of extra-legal censorship, the screening of film-maker Anand Patwardhan’s award-winning documentary Ram Ke Naam was cancelled 24 just hours before it could take place at the Indian Law Society’s Law College, Pune.

The film was supposed to be screened on Saturday as part of the college festival. Banners announcing the screening had been designed and Patwardhan had booked his tickets for Pune to attend it.

Ram Ke Naam, released over 20 years ago, delves into the Vishwa Hindu Parishad campaign to build a Ram temple in Ayodhya and documents the communal violence that followed the Babri demolition. It won the Filmfare Award for best documentary in 1992 as well as the National Film Award for ‘best investigative documentary’ the same year, in addition to bagging awards at film festivals in Switzerland and Japan.

Santosh Jaybhay, rector of the cultural festival at the law college, told TOI the screening had not been cancelled but postponed as not many students had visited the campus on Friday, the first day of the four-day festival. “We plan to hold the screening after January 3,” he said.

However, Patwardhan said a student of the college had called him on Friday and informed him that students had received threats over the screening, because of which the film had to be pulled out. He claimed the student later retracted the statement.

When TOI contacted Arpita Ghogardare, cultural head of the festival, she said no threats had been issued. “We were very keen on inviting Anand Patwardhan. While planning the festival, we had even asked faculty for permission to invite him, and they had agreed. But on Friday, when we formally invited members of the faculty for the screening, we were told the film was too serious for the cultural festival, and we could have it screened some other time. We were also told most events would wind up by 4.30pm, while this one would go on for too long. We were at a loss as to what to do as the cancellation occurred at the last minute,” she said.

Patwardhan said he had not been informed that the screening was being postponed to January. “Why would the faculty, which is well aware of the screening, suddenly cancel it at the last minute, after the posters for the screening are out and I have even booked my ticket from Mumbai to Pune?” he asked, adding that the students had not only invited him for the screening but had even chosen which of his films they wanted screened.


Ram Ke Naam, released over 20 years ago, delves into the Vishwa Hindu Parishad campaign to build a Ram temple in Ayodhya and documents the communal violence that followed the Babri demolition.

He pointed to several instances where his film screenings had been disrupted by the Sangh Parivar. “While several screenings of Ram Ke Naam have been attacked across India, other films of mine have also been attacked. Activists from Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (the RSS Parivar’s student wing) beat up five students last year outside Pune’s film archive after the screening of Jai Bhim Comrade,” he said.

Patwardhan said he believed that certain right-wing elements in the faculty may have objected to the film. Meanwhile, the college principal Vaijayanti Joshi said she would not like to comment on the incident at the moment as she was not fully aware of the details.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/No-show-Patwardhans-film-on-Ram-temple-pulled-after-threats/articleshow/45655424.cms

 

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