Amid heavy security, Dera Sacha Sauda chief’s controversial film ‘MSG The Messenger’ finally released across the city on Friday.
The Gurgaon police arrested as many as 28 Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) supporters at the Mehrauli-Gurgaon (MG) Road as they were protesting against Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s much hyped movie.
The group had gathered in front of MGF Metropolitan Mall to disrupt the movie’s screening. They were arrested for offending Section 144 which had been imposed on MG Road due to security concerns.
Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) of 1973, empowers a magistrate to prohibit an assembly of more than ten people in an area. According to sections 141-149 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the maximum punishment for engaging in rioting is rigorous imprisonment for 3 years and/or fine. Every member of an unlawful assembly can be held responsible for a crime committed by the group.
“They were all INLD supporters who were released later on,” said police adding that no any other untoward incidents were reported from any other part of the city.
“The situation on MG Road remained under control as no other incident was reported,” said JK Gupta, general manager of Sahara Mall, MG Road.
The movie’s release had earlier been postponed after the Censor Board refused to pass it and protests erupted in many areas seeking its ban as it “hurts religious sentiments”.
In order to avoid any untoward incidents, a heavy police force had been deployed on MG Road and across the city. Tight security arrangements were put in place around theatres in Haryana, Jammu and Delhi for the release of the movie.
Screening of the film was stopped for sometime at several cinemas in West Delhi following a protest by Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) and some other groups.
The Punjab government had last month denied permission for screening of the film, anticipating a law and order problem across the country.