MP theatre owners defy govt over Padmaavat release while Karni Sena says ‘wait and watch’

There seems to be no end to the controversy over the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s period film Padmaavat.

MP theatre owners defy govt over Padmaavat release while Karni Sena says ‘wait and watch’

There seems to be no end to the controversy over the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s period film Padmaavat, which has been marred in controversy since its inception. In the latest development, the cinema hall owners in Madhya Pradesh have taken on the government over the release of the film starring Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in lead roles.

The owners of cinema halls in Madhya Pradesh have clearly told the state government that they will release Padmaavat in theatres on its scheduled date – January 25, 2018. According to them, the film will be released in at least 150 theatres across Madhya Pradesh.

The association of cinema hall owners in the state have also decided to seek additional security from the government, and are likely to petition Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Director General of Police Rishi Kumar Shukla soon in this regard.

This comes even as Chouhan-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in the state has decided to appeal against Supreme Court order which paved the way for pan-India release of the film.

Meanwhile, members of Sri Rajput Karni Sena distributed memorandum in all theatres in Gurgaon, Haryana, asking them not to screen the film, which is facing protests over alleged distortion of facts. When asked as to what they plan to do if the film gets released in cinema halls, Karni Sena members said, “wait and watch what happens on 25th”.

Notably, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan governments have decided to file a review petition in the Supreme Court against its order allowing the release of Padmaavat. The apex court had last week stayed notifications banning the film by some states and ruled that no state had the right to stop the screening of the film that was already cleared by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).

Madhya Pradesh CM Chouhan had said, "We would once again knock on the apex court's doors," without elaborating on the issue.

Meanwhile, Rajasthan Home Minister Gulabchand Kataria also said the state government had decided to file a review petition in the Supreme court. The review petition would be filed on Monday or Tuesday, he said.

He also asked the Karni Sena, a group protesting against the film, to be a party to the petition.

"After studying the Supreme Court's decision against the ban on the film, the state government has decided to file a review petition in the Supreme Court. The state government is of the view that the honour of the historic event of 'Jauhar' should be protected as per the public sentiment," he told reporters after a meeting with Karni Sena leaders.

Along with the Karni Sena, the erstwhile royal family of Mewar is also likely to be a party to the petition, he said.

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