Even after the Supreme Court’s decision to turn down the pleas filed by Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh governments seeking modification of its January 18 order that had paved the way for the nationwide release of controversial film 'Padmaavat', violent protests were reported from various parts of the country.
In Gujarat and Rajasthan, activists of Rajput Karni Sena staged violent protests. In Ahmedabad, miscreants pelted stones and vandalised several shops. They also set vehicles on fire outside a theatre in Thaltej.
Padmaavat row: SC clears pan-India Jan 25 release of Bhansali's film, asks all states to comply with its order
Members of the group said that ‘no cinema hall will be allowed to screen the film and if someone does they should be ready to bear the consequences’.
Karni Sena leader Lokendra Singh Kalvi issued a veiled threat suggesting there could be violence if the Bollywood flick was released despite widespread opposition. In Porbandar, Mahatama Gandhi’s birthplace, Kalvi said that when so many people from all walks of life were standing firm against the film, it will be a “huge insult for all of us” if it releases on January 25.
Violent protests were also reported from different parts of Rajasthan. In Rajsamand town, goons blocked the movement of traffic on road and raised slogans against the filmmakers. Several tyres were also burnt by them. Markets were also seen closed. Violent demonstrations by Rajput group’s members were also reported from Pokhran.
Giriraj Singh Lotwara, president of the Shree Rajput Sabha, said that emergency-like situation is prevailing in the state and that the members have no fear of the government. He appeared adamant on the group’s demand that film should not be allowed to hit the silver screens.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Home Minister Gulab Chand Kataria said that after the SC’s order, the state government was left with no option but to maintain law and order.
In Kanpur, members of the Karni Sena staged a protest at a private mall. Agitated members barged into the mall demanding a complete ban on the film Padmaavat release. They tore film posters, damaged property and manhandled the mall staff.
In Gurugram, prohibitory orders have been imposed till Sunday to maintain law and order situation. The decision was taken in view of Shree Rajput Karni Sena threatening to target theatres screening the film. There are over 40 multiplexes and cinema halls in Gurugram.
Also Read: Rajat Sharma watched 'Padmavati', says 'there is not a single scene, dialogue, sequence that hurts Rajput pride'
On the other hand, ahead of January 25 release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s film, four India TV reporters today watched the film to gauge the facts. All the four journalists - Preeti Sompura (Mumbai), Sachin Chaudhary (Mumbai), Abhishek Upadhyay (Delhi) and Surbhi Sharma (Delhi), were of the view that there is not a single scene, dialogue or sequence in the film that hurts Rajput pride.
“There is nothing objectional in the film. People who are protesting, must see the film first,” Preeti Sompura said.
“There is no dream sequence between Padmini and Allaudin Khilji. If you watch the film, you will definitely applaud the roles beautifully played by all the actors. The film depicts pride and honour of Rajputs,” Sachin said.
Surbhi said that in every scene, viewers will see the rich culture of Rajput. “The film tells about the contributions of the Rajput community. Raja Ratan Singh (played by Shahid Kapoor) in every dialogue tells how rich the Rajput culture is.”
“It shows the bravery of Rani Padmini who with her decisions in a male-dominant society plans strategy to release the king from Khilji’s clutches. I can say one thing, those who are protesting today, will regret tomorrow,” Abhishek said.
The film was earlier slated to hit the silver screens on December 1 last year, but it was deferred by the filmmakers. The Censor Board of Film Certification (CPRF)-led by Prasoon Joshi cleared the film after some changes, including the name from Padmaavati to Padmaavat.
The film, which stars Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in lead roles, is based on the saga of the historic battle of 13th century between Maharaja Ratan Singh and his army of Mewar and Sultan Alauddin Khilji of Delhi.
According to, Gujarat Deputy CM Nitin Patel, most theatre owners in the state have voluntarily decided to not screen the film, adding that the state government was trying its best to maintain law and order.