New Delhi: Ahead of the release, protests against 'Padmaavat' continue to storm parts of the country on Wednesday. Protesters in Gurugram's Sohna torched a bus and pelted stones in protest against the film. Clubs and bars in Gurugram have decided to remain shut from 7 pm today till further order in the light of protests against the film.
— ANI (@ANI) January 24, 2018
Rajasthan witnessed a spate of protests with protesters from fringe outfits taking out rallies, blocking roads and damaging vehicles in different parts of the state. Members of the Karni Sena damaged windows of two state roadways buses and blocked a road in Kalwar area in state capital Jaipur.
In a separate incident, a group of masked men in Delhi had come to pelt stones at the PVS mall. Police, meanwhile, are on the lookout for the men. "We will provide security to the mall at the time of screening of the film," Chakrapani Tripathi, Circle Officer, Civil Lines said.
The protests against Padmaavat have also spread to Madhya Pradesh as various fringe outfits staged demonstrations in Indore and other towns and blocked national a highway. Nearly 200 protesters blocked National Highway-3, which links Agra with Mumbai, near Pigdambar crossing in Kishanganj area in Indore district and broke glass bottles on the road, police said. Heated arguments ensued between the protesters, who included members of Karni Sena, and the police when the Rajput group members tried to stop vehicles as part of their protest.
Theatre owners in Gujarat said that Padmaavat will not be screened in any of the multiplexes or single screens in the state till the row over the film is resolved, even as police arrested 50 people in connection with the violence outside malls here last night. The Gujarat Multiplex Owners Association said the decision has been taken for the safety of customers as well as to save their property.
On Tuesday, Gurugram's District Magistrate had announced that Section 144 would be in place within a 200-meter radius around film halls till January 28. The imposition of Section 144 prohibits the presence of persons carrying firearms and others articles capable of causing injury, raising slogans and exhibiting placards.
Section 144 was imposed in Uttar Pradesh's Gautam Budh Nagar, a day earlier, which includes Noida and the order will continue to be in effect for the next two months. This had come after police failed to control a protest over the release of Padmaavat.
Noida witnessed multiple protests on Sunday. The protesters started at Grand Venice Mall, Greater Noida later spread to Noida- Greater Noida Expressway and DND toll plaza. Hundreds of members of the Karni Sena, a Rajput output vandalised the Delhi Noida Direct (DND) Toll Plaza.
Delhi Police too is maintaining high security at the multiplexes and theatres across the city that are scheduled to show the movie.
Earlier this week, the Supreme Court had allowed a country-wide release of the controversial movie on January 25. Despite the apex court's decision, several organisations are protesting against the release and have warned exhibitors of "serious consequences" if they screen the film.
(With agency inputs)