Movie release would not affect mediation: SC

Movie release would not affect mediation: SCMovie release would not affect mediation: SC
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New Delhi: The 'Ram Ki Janmabhoomi' film, which revolves around the Ayodhya controversy, is set for the...

New Delhi: The 'Ram Ki Janmabhoomi' film, which revolves around the Ayodhya controversy, is set for the scheduled release on Friday with the Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court refusing to interfere with its screening.

There is "no connection" between the mediation proceedings in the Ayodhya land dispute matter and the release of the film, the Supreme Court said when the matter was mentioned before it for urgent listing. Hours later, the Delhi High Court hearing a separate petition on the issue also decided not to come in the way of the release of the film saying there was no material on record to support the allegations that the movie has the potential to promote communal disharmony.

"This court has not found anything objectionable in it," the high court said. In the Supreme Court, a bench comprising Justice S A Bobde and S A Nazeer, said no film can come in the way of mediation proceedings and if the parties want to settle the issue, they will do it. "There is no connection between the mediation proceeding and the release of movie. If the parties want to settle it, they will. They will not be affected by the film. We are not so pessimistic about it. No film can come in the way of mediation," the bench said.

It said that the plea against the movie would be heard after two weeks. The counsel, who mentioned the plea for urgent listing, said the exhibition of the film should be stayed as it would affect the ongoing mediation proceedings in the Ayodhya matter, which have commenced following the apex court's order. The lawyer said that release of the film would vitiate the mediation proceedings in the case.

A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi had on March 8 referred the Ayodhya's Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case for mediation by a panel headed by former apex court judge F M I Kalifulla for exploring the possibility of an amicable settlement. The apex court had said that spiritual guru and founder of Art of Living foundation Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu, a renowned mediator, will be the other two members of the panel of mediators and the proceedings will be held at Faizabad in Uttar Pradesh.

The high court, however, directed the movie's producer to hold private screening of the film for the petitioner, Prince Yakub Habeebuddin Tucy who claims to be a descendant of the last Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar. It also gave liberty to the petitioner to approach it again if he found any objectionable dialogue or scene in the movie.

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