‘Kashmir Files’: Prohibitory orders imposed in Kota for a month in view of film’s screening
In its order, the Kota administration has banned large gatherings, protests and agitations to maintain the law and order in the district.
The administration of Kota district in Rajasthan issued an order on Monday imposing Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure there for one month, India Today reported. The order came “in view of maintaining law and order with the screening of The Kashmir Files” and during upcoming festivals, the report quoted the order as saying.
Section 144, which bans the assembly of four or more people in public places, will be in place in Kota till April 21.
“Kota district is highly vulnerable from the communal point of view,” the order said. “Dharnas, demonstrations, meetings and processions due to the film, the death of youth while bathing in the Chambal river during the upcoming festivals may affect the situation of public order.”
The administration’s directive also banned crowds from gathering to watch the film together.
Earlier on March 17, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had said that the atmosphere being created in the country because of the film The Kashmir Files, will increase divide between different religions, PTI reported.
The movie is based on the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley in the 1990s.
Gehlot had on Twitter criticised the film and the chatter surrounding it.
“The debate on this film in the media and on social media spoils the atmosphere of brotherhood and harmony,” he wrote. “The exodus of Pandits from Kashmir at that time caused pain to all countrymen, irrespective of their religion.”
‘A political playground’
The film has been mired in controversy since its release on March 11.
While several BJP leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, have endorsed the movie, The Kashmir Files, the Opposition has accused filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri of promoting “half truths”.
National Conference Vice President Omar Abdullah on Friday said that the exodus of Kashmiri Hindus was a “stain on Kashmiriyat”. However, he added that the movie ignored the sacrifices of the Muslims and Sikhs in the state at the time.
“Kashmir has seen too much suffering and bloodshed for some to use it as a political playground,” Abdullah wrote on Twitter. “Instead of bridging the gaps some are determined to widen them. We must not let them succeed.”
Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh pointed out that the Congress was not in power at the Centre when the exodus occurred, The Times of India reported. The Congress unit of Kerala tweeted that the governor of the state who approved the flight of the community had been sanctioned by the BJP, Hindustan Times reported.
As of Wednesday, eight states have announced tax breaks for the film.