NEW DELHI, May 15 (PTI) The Supreme Court said it will hear on Tuesday a plea challenging the Kerala High Court order refusing to stay the release of movie ‘The Kerala Story’ which hit theatres on May 5.
The appeal filed by journalist Qurban Ali was mentioned by senior advocate Kapil Sibal on Monday
The bench comprising Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and justices P S Narasimha and J B Pardiwala agreed to list it for hearing today but later said it will be taken up on May 16 due to the scheduled hearing of certain matters before a special bench at 3 pm on Monday.
The senior lawyer said it needed an urgent hearing as the high court has refused to grant an interim stay on the movie’s release on May 5.
The high court order was passed after the judges had watched the teaser of the movie.
A bunch of petitions had sought a stay on the movie’s release and even objected to the certification given by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
Ali, in his plea, said that the movie amounted to hate speech as it claimed that nearly 32,000 girls from Kerala were lured to join ISIS by their Muslim friends.
This tends to create enmity and hatred among different groups, Ali had argued in the high court seeking a stay on the movie’s release.
The Supreme Court had on May 3 refused to entertain pleas related to the movie and had asked the petitioners to approach the jurisdictional high court.
The pleas, including the one which sought that a disclaimer should be added to the title of the film that it is a work of fiction, had been mentioned for urgent listing before a bench comprising Chief Justice Chandrachud and Justice P S Narasimha.
On Friday, the top court sought replies from the West Bengal and Tamil Nadu governments on a separate plea of the producers of “The Kerala Story” that the movie is not being shown in theatres in these two states.
While West Bengal has banned the movie after three days of its screening in theatres, Tamil Nadu has not banned the film but the exhibitors have withdrawn from cinema halls owing to security concerns.
“We find that trailers (of the movie) do not contain anything offensive to any particular community as a whole,” the high court had said in its order, adding that the CBFC had examined the movie and found it suitable for public exhibition.