Hindu Extremists Attack Theatres to Stop Showing of Film With Lesbian Scenes

June 14, 2004

Source: Yahoo! News

Wire Service: Reuters


On June 14, 2004 Reuters reported, "Hardline Hindus hurled stones and damaged cinema halls in India Monday to stop the screening of a Bollywood film about a relationship between two women, saying it violated Indian culture. Nearly 100 activists of the student's wing of the Shiv Sena group smashed window panes, ripped up posters and burned effigies at a hall screening the Hindi film 'Girlfriend' in Bombay, capital of India's prolific movie industry, witnesses said. The film show was stopped after the attack on the hall. Shiv Sena members also attacked a hall screening the film in the northern Hindu holy city of Varanasi, police said. There were no reports of any injuries in either incident. 'The film has some lesbian scenes and we got many complaints from the public, especially women, so we decided to take action,' Nitin Amberkar, a member of Shiv Sena's student wing, said in Bombay, minutes before tearing up posters of the film. About 20 Shiv Sena activists were detained in Varanasi after the incident. The cinema proceeded to screen the film under tight security, police said. Arun Pathak, the Varanasi unit chief of the hardline Hindu group, said the film violated Indian traditions."