A top Indian university has banned the screening of a BBC documentary about Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role during the deadly 2002 sectarian riots after his government attempted to block its spread online.
The broadcaster’s programme alleges that the Hindu nationalist Modi, premier of Gujarat state at the time, ordered police to turn a blind eye to an orgy of violence there that left at least 1,000 people dead, most of them minority Muslims.
Students at the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi had planned to screen the documentary on Tuesday, defying efforts by Indian authorities to restrict its showing.
But a memo from the university’s registrar late on Monday ordered students to cancel the event and warned it would take “strict disciplinary action” if its edict was disobeyed.
“Such an unauthorised activity may disturb peace and harmony of the university campus,” it said.
Modi’s government has been accused of stifling dissent by free-speech activists and opposition leaders for years.
On Saturday it used emergency powers under India’s controversial information technology laws to block the documentary from being shared on social media.
Government adviser Kanchan Gupta slammed the series as “hostile propaganda and anti-India garbage” disguised as a documentary