If news being reported by Indian media agencies is accurate, Avtar Makkar President of the SGPC in a drastic move has decided to pull the carpet out from underneath the Sikh community, artistic freedom and the most fundamental right of freedom of expression. News agencies are citing Makkar as stating that his initial support was a “mistake”.
Unfortunately for some, the news does not necessarily come as a surprise as Makkar has long been accused of being a puppet of the Badal-BJP/Hindutva alliance. Many even believe that each move appears to be a calculated ploy to to with the sentiments of community.
Worse yet and of even greater concern, the news comes after the SGPC was critiqued and threatened by KP Gill, more well known as the “Butcherer of Punjab” who stated SADDA HAQ was banned rightfully, since it “glorifies terrorism and, in a way, [is] promoting it”. Gill also added that he would seek the “elimination” of the SGPC since “it doesn’t represent Sikhs in totality.”.
While the censorship and ban on the movie continues in Punjab and other regions of India, North American theatres have been flooded with sold-out shows – indicating a drast contrast between a functioning and non-functioning democracy.
It is important to note that although the tale of 1984 is a controversial one indeed, India’s attempt to surpress the history of a community and control the propaganda has done more harm than good. Story-telling, dialogue, art and empowerment are integral components of healing and are pivotal in transitioning a grieving and victimized community to a safe, healing environment.
In democracy freedom of expression and artistic freedom are fundamental to the development, progress and growth of a community.
Show your support for artistic and axpressive freedoms and buy your tickets now. For a list of North American showtimes, please visit: http://www.kesrirevolution.org