Panaji (Goa) [India], Oct. 21 : Extremely upset after being assaulted in a movie hall for not standing up when the national anthem was played, writer Salil Chaturvedi on Friday said theatre is not a place to show love for the country, adding the people must be allowed to express their love for their nation in their own particular ways.
Chaturvedi told ANI that national anthem is something which should not be belittled by playing in a movie theatre.
"We are going out to have a nice evening and enjoy ourselves. There might be people, who drink and come. This is not a place to express your love for your country. Tomorrow, if we go to a restaurant and we are asked to sing the national anthem or to sing it before withdrawing money from ATM.
This is quite ridiculous. There is a place and time for everything," he added. Chaturvedi further said that national anthem should not be belittled by such instances and if it has to be played then there has to be some way by the theatre to announce that there might be people in the hall who cannot get up so others should not be forced to stand up.
"As far as I know, the national anthem is not played in most parts of India. So, why should it be done here in Goa or in Maharashtra? So, I think it would be nice if it is taken off from the cinema halls and let people express the love for their country in their own particular ways," he added.
Divulging details of the incident, Chaturvedi said "I had gone to see a movie at the Inox theatre in Panjim with a friend of mine and my wife in late July.
The movie was Rajinikanth's 'Kabali' and I had not seen any Rajinikanth's movie in theatre. Just before the movie started, they played the national anthem in the theatre and obviously I could not get up.
I was sitting on my seat.not on my wheel chair because I was carried to my seat. This couple behind me was singing the national anthem quite proudly. Suddenly, I got hit on the back of my head and I was quite shocked. I turned around and he gestured for me to stand up. I waited for the national anthem to get over and then I turned around and I told them that can't you just relax in life and just let people be and express your love for your country." "But they screamed back at me and said why can't you stand up for your national anthem.
To this I said you don't have to go around hitting people.you don't know the story here. There was an altercation with the couple," he added..