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‘Are our institutions so weak?’ — Delhi HC junks plea seeking stay on Gunjan Saxena film

The HC said 'shoulders of the armed forces' are broad enough to protect its reputation and questioned the legal basis for claiming that IAF has to be shown in a good light.

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New Delhi: The Delhi High Court Friday directed the Centre to treat as representation a PIL seeking stay on the streaming of a Netflix movie, ‘Gunjan Saxena – The Kargil Girl’, alleging that it depicts the Indian Air Force (IAF) in a bad light.

“The shoulders of the armed forces are broad enough to protect its reputation” and if the IAF has any objections “let them take it up”, the court said.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan disposed of the plea by an NGO against the film starring Janhvi Kapoor.

“Why this kind of sensitivity to a movie or a book? Are our institutions so weak?”, the bench said.

It also questioned the legal basis for claiming that IAF has to be shown in a good light and not otherwise.

It directed the Centre to decide the representation in accordance with the law, rules, regulations and government policy applicable to the case.

The NGO, Justice For Rights Foundation, sought directions to the movie’s producers to modify or delete the allegedly objectionable dialogues and scenes in the movie, which portrays the IAF in poor light.

It alleged that some scenes and dialogues in the movie are factually incorrect, misleading and portray an inappropriate work culture to glorify the screen character of the former Flight Lieutenant Gunjan Saxena.

The NGO had also claimed that the IAF and some of its officers have been shown as gender biased.

It told the court that as per the initial understanding, Dharma Production, which produced the film, had promised to represent the IAF authentically and to make all efforts to ensure that the film helps inspire the next generation of IAF officers.

To this the bench said that if the IAF was aggrieved by it, let it take action.

“The IAF is alive to the situation. Let them take action,” it said.

Also read: Gunjan Saxena on Netflix was ‘Bharat Ki Beti’, until facts came tumbling out


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