After the Supreme Court asked the centre on Tuesday to decide if playing the national anthem in cinema halls should be made compulsory, a 12-member inter-ministerial committee will hold its first meeting on January 19 to take a final call on the issue.
Special Secretary BR Sharma, a 1984 batch IAS officer in the Ministry of Home Affairs, will head the committee.
The committee, which will have joint secretary level officers from 11 ministries and department of the central government, would also recommend changes in the existing laws, if required.
"It has to submit its recommendations in form of a report within six months," a senior ministry official told NDTV.
According to him, most ministries in the government would be represented in this committee.
The formation of the inter-ministerial committee was mentioned on Tuesday by a Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra. The bench made it clear that the playing of national anthem in cinema halls before screening of movies optional, modifying its earlier order.
The centre had set up the committee after the top court, in October last year, observed that the people "cannot be forced to carry patriotism on their sleeves" and it cannot be assumed that if a person does not stand up for the national anthem, he or she is "less patriotic".
"The committee will give recommendations regarding regulations of playing and singing national anthem and to suggest changes in the acts and orders relating to the Insult of National Honour Act 1971," said the official.