‘Don’t be so narrow-minded’: SC dismisses plea seeking ban on employing Pakistani artistes

New Delhi:  The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed a plea seeking a complete ban on Indian citizens, companies, firms and associations from employing any Pakistani artiste.

At the very outset, a bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and S.V.N. Bhatti indicated its disinclination to entertain the special leave petition saying that the counsel appearing on petitioner’s behalf should not press it.

“We are not inclined to interfere with the impugned judgment and hence, the special leave petition is dismissed,” the bench ordered, remarking that the petitioner should not be so narrow-minded in his thinking.

In October, the Bombay High Court had dismissed the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Faaiz Anwar Qureshi – who claimed to be cine worker, artist, lyricist and film producer – saying that the reliefs sought in the plea are retrograde step in promoting cultural harmony, unity and peace, and have no merit.

It had said that resolutions or notices passed by a non-statutory association announcing a total ban on Pakistani actors and artistes working in film industry cannot be sought to be translated in the statutory notifications to be issued by the Central and state authorities.

“We may further state here these bans and such threats, if true, would agitate against the fundamental right guaranteed under Articles 19 (1) (a) , 19 (1) (g) and 21 of the Constitution of India and therefore, they would be manifestly illegal,” a bench of Justices Sunil B. Shukre and Firdosh P. Pooniwalla had said.

It had noted that the cricket World Cup being held in India, the Pakistan team is taking part and this has happened only because of appreciable positive steps taken by the government in the interest of overall peace and harmony in consonance with Article 51 of the Constitution, which seeks to promote international peace and security.


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