This Article is From Jan 31, 2012

Pune's Symbiosis college cancels screening of Kashmir documentary after protest

Pune: Pune's Symbiosis college has decided to postpone a three-day festival-cum-seminar on Kashmir after objections were raised by Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and other right-wing organisations over screening of a documentary by Sanjay Kak.

The decision was taken after the college held a meeting with the groups protesting against the documentary. The police too had asked the college not to show the film fearing violence.

The college was to screen the film, Jashn-e-Azadi, in the seminar from February 3 to 5. The session was meant to showcase art, culture and literature of Kashmir. But the right wing groups argued that the documentary shows the armed forces fighting in Kashmir in bad light.

"The film 'Jashn-e-Azadi' which was to be screened at the festival shows how Indian Army is committing atrocities in the Valley. The militants are being depicted as heroes. That is the reason why the students' union has opposed it," says Shailendra Dalvi, the Joint Secretary of ABVP.

The college had earlier decided not to screen the documentary but after some serious objections raised by these organisations, the festival now stands postponed.

"After objections were raised by several groups, we decided not to screen the documentary. I won't call it giving in to the pressure. It is not true. We thought the controversy would end there. But unfortunately, it didn't. So we decided to postpone the festival," said Dr Hrishikesh Sonam, the principal of Symbiosis Arts and Commerce College.