Ban on BBC film on Dec 16 gangrape case 'private dispute': UK

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New Delhi, Mar 12: The UK on Thursday said that the BBC documentary on the December 16 gangrape case pin-points a very important issue but maintained that the ban on it in India was a "private dispute" between the broadcaster and the authorities.

British Foreign Minister Philip Hammond said his country would encourage the Indian government to take whatever steps it decides to take to enhance protection of women in India.

nn

Asked if External Affairs Ministry has raised the issue with the UK government, he told reporters that he has not spoken about it and nobody has raised it with him so far.

"It is not for us to raise the issue. It is up to Indian authorities whether to show a programme in India. I know there is a dispute between BBC and Indian authorities about what was agreed upon around the making of the programme. It is a private dispute and does not concern British government any way," he added.

Asserting that the UK has led the world in the sexual violence against women campaign and would continue doing so, Hammond said, "... On the substantive underlining issue, the film pin-points a very important issue that has been subject of lot of debate in India...

"We welcome what Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said about this issue. We will encourage the Indian government to take whatever measures it decides to take to enhance protection of women in India. We will encourage and support those measures in the future."

The government has banned the telecast of "India's Daughter" which includes an interview conducted by British filmmaker Leslee Udwin and BBC, of Mukesh Singh, the driver of the bus in which the 23-year-old paramedical student was brutally gangraped by six men on December 16, 2012.

Mukesh has made derogatory statements against women in the documentary.

PTI

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