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Allahabad HC restricts the release of Al Jazeera’s propaganda documentary ‘India…Who Lit The Fuse’: Read what the judgement says

The petitioner says as per some print and social media reports, the documentary portrays a Muslim minority living with a sense of fear and presents a disruptive narrative creating a sense of public hatred, which is far from reality.

The Allahabad High Court has ordered an interim stay on the telecast/broadcast/release of the Al Jazeera documentary titled “India….Who Lit The Fuse?”. The judgement has been accessed by OpIndia. The Court has directed the Centre to take appropriate measures to ensure that the documentary is not allowed to be telecast/broadcast unless its contents are examined by the authorities, and necessary certification is obtained from the competent authority.

A PIL was filed by social activist Sudhir Kumar. The petitioner alleged that the documentary has the potential to cause disharmony amongst the citizens and threaten the integrity of the Nation.

“The writ petition proceeds on the premise that the film, if released/broadcast is likely to create hatred amongst different religious denominations and thereby destroy the secular fabric of the Indian State. The Film also has the potential to create social unrest and disturb public order, decency and morality,” the judgement reads.

“It is then stated that in case the film is allowed to be broadcast/telecast, it is likely to endanger the fraternity that exists in the country between India’s religious communities.”

“Averments are also made in the writ petition to the effect that Al Jazeera has exceeded its ambit so as to broadcast films, a position as investigations on its news channel with the singular intention of creating distress and endangering public order in the country.”

What is the Al Jazeera documentary about?

The petitioner says as per some print and social media reports, the documentary portrays a Muslim minority living with a sense of fear and presents a disruptive narrative creating a sense of public hatred, which is far from reality.

The petitioner underlines that the film negatively portrays the political functionaries of the Indian State and projects them as acting detrimental to the interest of minorities.

The petitioner states that the film purposefully seeks to create a rift between India’s largest religious communities through its disruptive narrative and create a sense of public hatred.

The documentary has further been accused of proposing to publicize distorted versions of facts with the intent to create disharmony amongst the citizens of the Country who belong to different religious denominations.

Documentary provoked anti-India response on Twitter

A supplementary affidavit was also filed today attaching various Twitter posts in response to the documentary on the pre-release of the film in some other countries.

These posts/comments suggest that campaigns are being conducted in several Indian states to demolish the houses and companies of the minority communities at the direction of the majority community.

Al Jazeera did not obtain certification for the documentary

The Union of India in furtherance to the petition submitted that necessary certification has indeed not been obtained by Al Jazeera for the release the documentary.

In doing so the petitioner alleged that Al Jazeera intended to overreach the constitutional safeguards for placing reasonable restrictions on the right of speech and expression.

Here’s what the court observed

The Allahabad HC in its judgement observed that although the Constitution of India guarantees the fundamental right of freedom of speech and expression but the same is subject to the reasonable restrictions specified in Article 19(2).

“Considering the seriousness of allegations made in the writ, which are likely to have far-reaching consequences the petition does require consideration,” the judgement reads.

It further reads, “Considering the evil consequences that are likely to occur on the telecast/broadcast of film in question its telecast/broadcast we are of the view that the broadcast/telecast of the film in question be deferred pending consideration of the cause in the present petition.”

How Al Jazeera has been running its anti-India propaganda

2015: Published fake map of India

In 2015, the Doha-based “news” organisation was banned for five days in India for deliberately publishing the wrong political map of India. The map showed integral parts of India to be parts of China and Pakistan.

18 April 2023: Normalised radicalisation

In a bid to brush Islamic radicalisation under the carpet, Al Jazeera published a 10-page Instagram post crying about “rising Islamophobia in India.” It did so by publishing sensational images generated through Artificial Intelligence.

19 June, 2022: Published fake news blaming Hindus

Fake news peddler Al Jazeera blamed Hindus for the murder of a maulvi in a mosque in Bihar. This even after the local police and the maulvi’s son stated that the murder was owing to a family dispute over property.

How foreign media has a history of targetted India & Hindus

On 17 January this year, BBC released part one of its propaganda documentary on the 2002 Gujarat riots titled “India: The Modi Question”.

The documentary sparked a massive storm. It selectively showed the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a negative light spinning a narrative entirely centred around the riots.

The sinister cinematography conveniently excluded several facts and key information in order to position Indian Muslims as victims under the “Hindutva Modi govt”.

All these documentaries contain a similar pattern of optics weaved in order to manipulate the masses and continue to cast doubts on the facts of the case.

The Ministry of External Affairs had denounced the documentary saying it was “designed to push a discredited narrative.”

The Allahabad HC has directed the respondents to file their reply by 6 July when the case will be heard next.

“The authorities of Union and State Government are directed to act in aid of above directions and thereby secure social harmony and protect the security and interest of the
Indian State,” the judgement concluded.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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