Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Freedom To Smoke

Amit comments on the astonishing Indian ban on smoking in cinema.

This is surely an unconstitutional breach of India's freedom of expression. Perhaps Indian filmmakers could initiate a civil disobedience campaign by having at least one character in their movies be a smoker.

Let's find out if our censor board really has the guts to ban every single movie?


doubtinggaurav said...

This ban is stupid.
I am aghast that government has no problem with the rape or murder scenes but it has objection to smoking.
Ultimately it's individual choice what to do with his life and beyond a certain point neither state nor society can do anything about it.

Ashish Gupta said...

All those people who oppose the ban on the argument that govt. has no problem with rape or murder but smoking: will you be pleased if govt. banned rape and murder along with smoking? if yes, try to make govt. do it, if not, your opposition is futile point

doubtinggaurav said...

While I do appreciate need for political correctness and moral instruction, I think that extending it to realms of fantasy and make-believe (which is what cinema is) a bit untenable

Anonymous said...

I was startled that you would advocate Civil Disobediance. If there was one thing that has been systematically cutting at the roots of democracy in India - it is just that.

Civil Disobediance per se is a bad bad phenomenon - even under a foreign power.
Advocating it is ridiculous, under the current scenario - more so, coming from you.

People point to the neta breaking laws, and instead of upholding it themselves, they continue the chain of breaking it.

Primary Red said...


Fair point.

OTOH, when a law in itself is damaging, following it like sheep makes one complicit.

The civil disobedience we advocated would not have impeded productivity -- for that, we would have asked, for example, film makers to stop making films & staging dharnas etc. Our suggestion was to continue making films albeit with explicit breach of the ban on smoking. This would put the constitutionality of the said law on trial -- let's then see then who wins in court.

This is surely not the same kind of kneejerk "civil disobedience" of our so-called netas that you despise so much.

Best regards.


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