IIT Bombay imposes fine of Rs 1.2 lakh on 8 students for performing play that allegedly mocked Lord Ram

The students had presented the play named 'Raahovan' on March 31 this year, as part of the Performing Arts Festival (PAF).
IIT Bombay. (File Photo | PTI)
IIT Bombay. (File Photo | PTI)

MUMBAI: The Indian Institute of India (IIT) Bombay has imposed a fine of up to Rs 1.2 lakh on eight students, who performed a play that allegedly mocked Lord Ram and portrayed the 'Ramayana' in a bad light, a fellow student said on Thursday.

The students had presented the play named 'Raahovan' on March 31 this year, as part of the Performing Arts Festival (PAF).

"The play that was presented mocked Lord Ram and portrayed the Ramayana in a vulgar and derogatory manner," said a Masters student at the institute.

The student, who declined to be named, is one of those who lodged a complaint against the play with the administration.

Another student affiliated to the Ambedkar Periyar Phule Study Circle (APPSC) at the IIT Bombay also confirmed that students were fined for presenting the play.

The APPSC is a left-leaning student's body.

"Following the complaint, each of the eight students was fined in the range of Rs 40,000 to Rs 1,20,000," the student said.

A notice issued by the IIT Bombay registrar's office dated June 4 said the fine has to be paid by the students by July 30.

The IIT Bombay has declined to comment on the issue.

"We welcome disciplinary action taken by the @iitbombay administration against those involved in the play 'Raahovan,' which depicted the Ramayana in a derogatory manner.

These students abused their academic freedom to mock Lord Ram, Mata Sita, and Lord Laxman," said @IITBforBharat on social media site X on June 19.

The @IITBforBharat is an account on X which calls itself a group of volunteers aimed at having a common space for Indic civilisational values.

The group on April 8 demanded an action against students involved in the play dubbing it as an act of Hinduphobia.

"We urge the @iitbombay administration to establish guidelines to ensure that no religion is ridiculed under the guise of freedom of expression on the campus in any form.

Also, An apology letter regarding this action and the objectionable PAF event is expected from the @iitbombay administration to the @iitbombay community.

"According to the sources, two different punishments were executed, one for the students who are passing this July and another for the regular students," @IITBforBharat said.

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