Freedom of Expression is Ensured in India

1473 WordsFeb 4, 20186 Pages
In India freedom of expression is ensured by Article 19(1) of the Constitution but is also limited by Article 19(2) which allows the government to place “reasonable restrictions on this right in the interests of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states, public order, decency or morality, or in relation to contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence.” This means that the government can potentially censor anything. No other form of expression has had so many run-ins with these constitutional mandates as cinema. In India the National Cinematograph act (1952) lays down the guidelines to be followed during certification of films. It comes under the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) which in turn comes under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. The censor board has to depend on the police to enforce its rulings. A film certification appellate tribunal is also in place to hear appeals against a ruling of the Censor Board. The NFDC is composed of the Directorate of Film festivals and the Film finance corporation. Former Chief Justice M. Hidayatullah, passing judgment on what is still the landmark case on freedom of expression in the cinema that of K. A. Abbas vs Union of India, says: “It has been almost universally recognised that the treatment of motion pictures must be different from that of other forms of art and expression. This arises from the instant appeal of
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