Hindus in Delhi now need licence before performing pooja or staging Ramlila. According to the latest directives issued by the Licensing Department of Delhi police it is mandatory to get a licence for performing pooja from a competent authority in Delhi. Indraprastha Vishwa Hindu Parishad (IVHP) strongly opposed the directives and said they are violation of the fundamental rights. IVHP general secretary Shri Satyendra Mohan said such directives are to hamper Hindu festivals. He said such directives were not issued even by the Mughal rulers Tughlaq and Aurangjeb. How Hindus could be stopped performing pooja in the independent country.
Now a large number of Durga Pooja and Ramlila Committees are forced to withdraw their planning of performing pooja or organising Ramlila this year due to the complicated and expensive procedure of getting the licence. The directive published in many national dailies recently says one has to make an affidavit and submit No Objection Certificate from Local Police, DDA, Traffic Police, Chief Fire Officer, Electricity Inspector, Entertainment Tax Officer, etc. The security has to be arranged by pooja committees from their own sources and it should not be less than the airport security in any manner. They have to install CCTV cameras with a 24-hour watching security personnel, DFMDs (security frames), trained male as well as female security guards with metal detectors, fire tender and ambulance should be kept ready for 24 hours. Many Ramleela Committees show only Ramayan TV serial made by the late Ramanand Sagar on a big screen during this period. Such committees need certificate from the film censer board and have to deposit Rs. 500/- per day in addition to many more formalities. (FOC)