All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi on Thursday hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over protests by groups like Sri Rajput Karni Sena against Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s film Padmaavat.
Termed the stand of the BJP on the issue as “pakoda politics”, Owaisi said that “Prime Minister and his party have meekly surrendered before these people who are protesting”. He added, “He (PM Modi) has 56 inch chest only for Muslims.”
On Tuesday, the AIMIM chief had attacked the government over the issue of triple talaq, saying it was an attempt by them to target Islamic Sharia law on the pretext of “justice for women”.
His statement came shortly after BJP leader Subramanian Swamy and VK Singh backed the protests against the film, starring Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh, by Karni Sena-like groups.
Explaining why there is no need to make movies on historical subjects, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy said: "It opens old wounds, and that is why such films should not be made. What is the historical value of it? Zero. They say it has nothing to do with history, then why are you making it."
Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs VK Singh also said that no one is allowed to misrepresent and distort the history in the name of freedom of expression.
Defending the protests over the film, the minister said that protests are inevitable if anything is done without consensus. "Whenever we say something about history we must cross check it. Freedom of expression doesn't give us any right to tamper the history. We should pacify and resolve the situation by talking to the people, who are protesting against the film. They should be asked about their concerns and objections in the film. Whenever there are clashes of interest, things will certainly be messed up," Singh said.
Padmaavat, which was initially slated to release on December 1, 2017, finally hit the theatres on Thursday, after getting nod from the Central Board of Film Certification and a Supreme Court ruling allowing pan-India release of the film.