India has blocked the release of Kaum De Heere (Diamonds Of The Community), a movie about the assassination of former PM Indira Gandhi, after complaints it glorified her killers.
Intelligence agencies had warned of potential violence if the movie is released.
Kaum De Heere had been scheduled for release on Friday, August 22.
The movie tells the story of Indira Gandhi’s Sikh bodyguards who shot her dead apparently to avenge her decision to send troops in a deadly raid on the Golden Temple.
Sikhs say thousands were murdered when the army entered Sikhism’s holiest shrine in Amritsar to flush out militants.
Indira Gandhi’s assassination triggered an outburst of communal violence targeted at Sikhs and more than 3,000 Sikhs were killed in attacks across India.
India’s Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) decided to halt the release “because of the law and order situation that might result from the showing of the film”, the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency reported.
Kaum De Heere‘s producer Ravinder Ravi has defended his film vociferously, but has not yet responded to the latest decision.
In Punjab the Congress Party – which Indira Gandhi led – threatened to carry out protests if the film was released and the party’s youth wing also wrote to PM Narendra Modi asking for the film to be banned, saying it presented her assassins as heroes.
Satwant Singh and Beant Singh, her two bodyguards, are the main focus of the movie, which is what has given rise to such anger.
Beant Singh was killed by police shortly after the murder while Satwant Singh was later hanged.
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