Published On: Mon, Mar 9th, 2015

Banning “India’s Daughter” Has Shown India to Disrepute Free Speech and Democracy

Banning "India's Daughter" Has Shown India to Disrepute Free Speech and Democracy - Unique Times

Banning “India’s Daughter” Has Shown India to Disrepute Free Speech and Democracy – Unique Times

 India committed “international suicide” by banning a documentary about the gang rape and murder of a woman in Delhi, the director of the film said after a Friday night screening in London. India last week prohibited the release of the film “India’s Daughter” and also asked video-sharing website YouTube to remove all links to the documentary. Police said the ban was imposed as comments in the film by one of those convicted of the crime created an atmosphere of “fear and tension” and risked fuelling public anger. “My whole purpose was to give a gift of gratitude to India, to actually praise India, to single India out as a country that was exemplary in its response to this rape, as a country where one could actually see change beginning,” said Leslee Udwin, director of the documentary, during a panel discussion. “The supreme irony is that they are now accusing me of having wanted to point fingers at India, defame India, and it is they who have committed international suicide by banning this film.” The British filmmaker said she was inspired to make the film after watching thousands of people take to the streets across India to protest the December 2012 rape and murder of a young physiotherapy student on a bus. Udwin said that banning the film brought India into disrepute by obstructing free speech, one of the essential elements of democracy. The filmmaker said that if she was given a chance she would persuade India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi to allow the screening.

Denisha Sahadevan

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Banning “India’s Daughter” Has Shown India to Disrepute Free Speech and Democracy