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Monday June 24, 2024

Bombay HC refuses to ban Pakistani artists

Court observes patriotism isn’t demonstrated by hostility towards foreign nationals, particularly those from neighbouring countries

By News Report
October 23, 2023
The Bombay High Court building in Mumbai. — India Today/File
The Bombay High Court building in Mumbai. — India Today/File

MUMBAI: The Bombay High Court has ruled against a petition that aimed to ban Pakistani artists from working or performing in India.

The legal petition, initiated by Faaiz Anwar Qureshi — a self-proclaimed cine worker and artist — demanded that the Indian government ban any form of professional association with artists from Pakistan.

The petition specifically called for a prohibition on the employment, solicitation of work, or collaboration with Pakistani cine workers, musicians, singers, lyricists, and technicians by Indian citizens and companies.

The division bench comprising Justices Sunil Shukre and Firdosh Pooniwalla, categorically rejected the plea. The court stated that such a move would be a backward step in fostering cultural harmony and unity, both within India and across its border with Pakistan.

The court further observed that patriotism isn’t demonstrated by hostility towards foreign nationals, particularly those from neighbouring countries.

“A true patriot is a person who is selfless, who is devoted to the cause of his country, which he cannot be unless he is a person who is good at heart. A person who is good at heart would welcome in his country any activity which promotes peace, harmony, and tranquility within the country and across the border,” PTI quoted it as saying.

“One must understand that in order to be a patriot, one need not be inimical to those from abroad especially, from the neighbouring country,” the court said.