One More Ban in Mumbai, this Time of Durga Idol Photos During Immersion

File photo of an idol of Durga.

File photo of an idol of Durga.

The Mumbai police has issued a notice banning photography and publishing pictures of Durga idols during immersion that will take place from October 22-24. No one will be allowed to take or publish photos of idols that lie half-submerged or while being taken away by civic workers for re-immersion on the three days.

The decision has been taken keeping in mind that pictures or videos of idol immersion may “hurt the religious sentiments, which may result into disturbance of public peace and tranquility” according to a statement issued by Mumbai police here.
City police in this connection has invoked section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 (Act no II of 1973).

Such a rule has also been enforced during the 10 day Ganpati festivals for the past several years. Photos of processions are not prohibited,but those of heavy Ganpati idols, that float back to the shore after immersion are. While the media tends not to print or broadcast such images, it has been impossible to control after the proliferation of mobile cameras. A veteran photographer said he recalled a time when there was no such ban and certainly never during Durga immersion.

“I am empowered under section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 (Act no II of 1973) in exercises of the said powers do hereby order that no person shall take photographs of idols floating or half-submerged after immersion is over and shall not publish or circulate same,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Sanjay Barkund was quoted as saying in the statement. If anyone is found to be not abiding by it would face investigation or legal proceedings, penalty or forfeiture or punishment.

Earlier, on July 30 this year, Mumbai police had put ban on photography and videography during the funeral of 1993 serial blasts convict Yakub Memon, who was hanged to death in Nagpur Central jail before being buried in a graveyard in South Mumbai.