Despite the Supreme Court imposing a stay order on the ban on ‘Padmaavat’s’ release in the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Haryana, most theatres in Patna are unwilling to screen the film based on a fictional Rajput warrior queen.
On Thursday, members of Shri Rajput Karni Sena, based in Jaipur, Rajasthan, vandalised a cinema hall in Muzaffarpur, Bihar.
‘Padmaavat’ is scheduled to release on January 25 and the theatre had out up promotional posters. Protesters pelted stones and posters at the single screen cinema hall, reported The Times of India.
Majority of the remaining single-screen theatres in the city are reluctant to screen the Sanjay Leela Bhansali directed movie that has been surrounded by controversies since its shooting.
The Karni Sena has extended it protests across North India. Earlier, they had threatened cinema halls of “detrimental consequences” for screening the movie. It issued a warning, saying it would impose a ‘janata (people’s) curfew’ across the country if they film is released anywhere in India.
On Monday, the fringe Rajout body has vandalised the campus of a private school in Madhya Pradesh when students were performing the ‘Ghoomar’ song from the movie.
Earlier, Karni Sena’s chief Lokendra Singh Kalvi had claimed to have met with CMs of Telangana, Uttarakhand and Chhattisgarh who assured a ban on ‘Padmatav’s’ release. Rajasthan has already refused permission to screen the film, citing people’s sentiments and Goa has said that it would not be screened in peak tourist season.
The Supreme court yesterday stayed the ban imposed by various states. However, it seems unlikely that the movie would be allowed to run in all Indian states with Rajasthan and Gujarat CMs having expressed disappointment at the apex court’s order.
A fresh PIL to cancel the U/A CBFC certificate given to ‘Padmaavat’ was rejected by the SC on Friday. The court rejected the plea saying, “Maintaining law and order is not our job. That is the job of the state. Prayer rejected.”
Karni Sena is known for its extremist violence. In 2008, before the release of the film ‘Jodhaa Akbar’, the outfit had heavily protested, leading to its ban in Rajasthan. Kalvi had said he would first watch the movie then decide if it should be given the permission to be released.
The Logical Indian community is perturbed with the ongoing violence across India by Karni Sena against the release of a movie. Having a difference of opinion is acceptable. If you do not agree with how a director has portrayed certain elements in a movie, best is to not watch it. Cinema is art and an expression of the artist’s personal views; he does need to take into account the sentiments of a few fringe elements. It is a matter of great concern that outfits like Karni Sena can resort to violence without a care for law. There have been no arrests for the several instances of vandalism that is not only disrupting daily lives but also instilling fear in our minds. The Rajput body needs to be rid of this impunity and strict action is ought to be taken against its members for resorting to criminal acts.
They are openly giving death threats and the support of Rajasthan and Gujarat government against the SC’s order to release the movie in all states, gives the fringe Rajput body more power.