Activists Storm Bombay Cinemas
Dec. 02, 1998
BOMBAY, India (AP) _ Dozens of right-wing activists stormed two theaters in Bombay today, prompting a movie distributor to suspend the showing of an internationally acclaimed film about a lesbian relationship.
The protesters claim the movie ``Fire,'' the first film from India to focus on lesbianism, distorts their culture. At least 100 activists with the right-wing Shiv Sena Party surrounded the theater managers and demanded the movie not be shown.
The movie's distributor, Shringar Films, suspended showing of the movie in Bombay, citing concern for audience safety. Shiv Sena activists have used violence to get their way on other issues.
``We will wait and watch. Ultimately, audience safety is more important,'' said Balkrishna Shroff, an owner of Shringar Films.
``Fire'' has been packing theaters in the three weeks it has been running in Bombay. Angry ticket-holders lined up for a refund.
``Why can't those who cannot stomach sensitive subjects not come for the films instead of stopping us from seeing good cinema,'' said Naina Fernandes, a college student.