Handicapped need not stand up in cinema hall for national anthem: SC

The Supreme Court of India.

New Delhi, Dec 9  The Supreme Court on Friday modified its November 30 order, exempting physically handicapped person from standing up when the national anthem is played in cinema hall before the start of a film show.

The bench of Justice Dipak Misra and Justice Amitava Roy modified their order by which the court had directed cinema halls to play the national anthem before the start of movies and when is sung or played, it is imperative on the part of everyone present to show due respect and honour by standing up.

“If a physically challenged person or physically handicapped person goes to the cinema hall to watch a film, he need not stand up, if he is incapable to stand, but must show such conduct which is commensurate with respect for the National Anthem,” the court said, clarifying these meant persons with disability as defined under Sections 2(i) and 2(t) of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995.

The court noted the statement by Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi that the government would, within 10 days, issue guidelines as to how such persons shall show respect to the national anthem when it is played in cinema halls.

On other applications seeking the recall of the November 30 order, the court said that “the same has to be heard on merits when the matter is finally debated upon” as it directed next hearing of the matter on February 14, 2017.

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