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Case over smoking Kaali: Leena Manimekalai gets protection from SC

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New Delhi: Filmmaker Leena Manimekalai, who faces multiple criminal cases over a poster of her documentary film in which a woman dressed as Goddess Kaali is smoking, got protection from arrest and other coercive processes from the Supreme Court after she pleaded it was not meant to hurt anyone’s feeling.

An SC bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud heard Manimekalai saying that the depiction of Goddess Kaali in the poster was an artistic way to present the deity in an “inclusive sense”.

The bench, which also included justice PS Narasimha, took the filmmaker’s statement on record and directed that she will not be subjected to any coercive process, including the arrest in the wake of the first information reports (FIRs) registered against her over the poster.

Apart from directing the police not to act against her, the court also urged the states of Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Madhya Pradesh, where cases against her have been filed, to club all FIRs in one place so as to get the petitioner the liberty to file a Section 482 CrPc plea.

Section 482 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPc) enables a person to move the high court concerned for quashing of the FIRs.

The Madurai-born filmmaker shared the poster of ‘Kaali’ on the microblogging website, Twitter, in July 2022, and said the documentary was part of the ‘Rhythms of Canada’ segment at the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto.

It triggered widespread fury on social media and prompted the Indian High Commission in Toronto to ask the authorities in Canada for the removal of the posters.


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TAGS:Case over smoking Kaali Leena Manimekalai Protection from arrest 
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