CPM, Congress wings maintain BBC movie screenings in Kerala, BJYM protests

Days after the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting issued instructions to dam the primary episode of the BBC Documentary — India: The Modi Question — on YouTube, the youth outfits of CPI(M) and Congress screened the documentary at many locations in Kerala on Tuesday.

The screening at Poojappura in Thiruvananthapuram, beneath the aegis of CPI(M) youth wing DYFI, ended up in violence after BJP employees stormed the venue and clashed with police personnel. Several BJP employees, together with girls, sustained accidents after the police used pressure.

CPI(M) scholar wing SFI took the documentary to campuses, together with universities. In Palakkad, Kozhikode and Kalpetta in Wayanad, whereas BJP Yuva Morcha protested in opposition to the screening.

Earlier within the day, after the youth outfits introduced the screening, BJP state president Ok Surendran petitioned Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, looking for his intervention to forestall the screening. But, the state leaderships of CPI(M) and Congress supported the screening.

CPI(M) state secretary M V Govindan mentioned the ban on the documentary is anti-democratic. “In a democratic society, ideas should not be banned. If ideas are banned, people would develop a likeness towards that banned thought. A mass resistance should emerge against the move to prevent the show of the documentary,” he mentioned.

Senior Congress legislator and former Opposition chief Ramesh Chennithala mentioned banning the documentary amounted to infringement of the liberty of expression.

BJP chief and Union Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan mentioned the screening of the documentary shouldn’t be allowed in Kerala. “It is an anti-national transfer and the Chief Minister ought to intervene to cease the screening,’’ he mentioned.

Meanwhile, the BJP on Tuesday obtained help from surprising quarters, with senior Congress chief and former Kerala Chief Minister A Ok Antony’s son Anil saying that inserting the views of the British broadcaster over Indian establishments would “undermine” the nation’s sovereignty.

“Despite large differences with BJP, I think those (in India) placing views of BBC, a state sponsored channel with a long history of (alleged India) prejudices, and of Jack Straw, the brain behind the Iraq war, over (Indian) institutions is setting a dangerous precedence, will undermine our sovereignty,” Anil tweeted.

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