The Bombay high court today declined permission to a Ganpati mandal in Naupada to depict a cut out of Afzal Khan being slain by Shivaji. This was in the wake of a report filed by deputy commissioner of police zone 1.
The court had yesterday sought a report from the Thane commissioner of police after the Hindu Jagruti Sarvajanik Shri Ganesh Mandal had challenged the removal of the cut out by the Naupada police.
The DCP on Tuesday said in his report that such depictions might cause breach of public order and disturb communal harmony. The police had on Monday stated that the poster was removed due to sensitive nearby areas that might react negatively to it.
The division bench of justice Ranjana Desai and justice Rajesh Ketkar said that the court could not interfere in view of the police’s concerns, but added that the larger issue concerning depictions of historical events could be looked into.
“We can look into the issue of whether police can press restrictions on people’s right to depict historical events that might be sensitive to some people,” the court said.
The petitioner has agreed to amend the petition accordingly.