SC refuses to hear case against movie 'Article 15'

Ayushmann Khurrana starrer 'Article 15' was released in India on June 28.

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to consider a plea for cancellation of the certificate granted for release of Hindi film 'Article 15' for making "casteist slur and creating caste hatredness" in the society for commercial gains.

Ayushmann Khurana-starrer movie set in the hinterland of Uttar Pradesh against the Badaun gangrape-cum-murder case of 2014 has already been released on Friday, June 28.

A bench of Justices S A Bobde and B R Gavai told the petitioner's counsel to approach the "appropriate authority" under the law against the certificate for release granted to the film.

A Delhi-based organisation 'Brahman Samaj of India' through its national organising secretary Nemi Nath Chaturvedi contended that the film was in contravention of Article 19(1)(a) (freedom of speech and expression) of the Constitution and Section 3 of the Emblem and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act, 1950.

"The film is likely to cause severe damage to public perception about Article 15 of the Constitution and its origin... such public perception may lead to public disorder, incitement to offence among different caste and against each other," their petition stated.

Maintaining that using Articles of the Constitution for title of the film without approval of the government was illegal, the petition filed by advocate Ranjan Dwivedi said: "the content of the film shows various objectionable dialogues spreading rumour and caste hatred in the society based on a false/incorrect and concocted story depicting in the name and background of a true criminal incident."

It argued that the film produced by Anubhav Sinha's 'Benaras Media Works Pvt Ltd' violated and diminished the true spirit of Article 15 (no discrimination on the basis of caste, sex and gender) and 19(1)(a) of the Constitution and as such its certificate in the category of UA (unrestricted public exhibition but with parental guidance) was liable to be set aside.

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