New Delhi: Fringe organisation Shri Rajput Karni Sena has been vehemently opposing the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali's epic drama 'Padmaavat' alleging distortion of facts. From making shocking statements to issuing threats to burn cinema halls as well as committing mass suicide, the faction has been leaving no stone unturned to stop the release of the film.
On Saturday, as per news agency ANI, the Karni Sena claimed that filmmaker Bhansali invited the group to watch the film to seek their support for the release of the movie. The group said that Bhansali productions company sent a missive to Shree Rajput Karni Sena and Shree Rajput Sabha Bhawan to watch the movie prior to its release but alleged that the approach was only a ploy 'aimed at fooling' them.
"This is nothing but drama by the filmmaker. There is no date of the proposed screening the film and they have called our objection as misguided grievances which shows their approach and intention," Sena patron Lokendra Singh Kalvi told reporters here. He added that the group has decided to not to respond to the letter but instead burn it as a sign of protest against the release of the movie.
Kalvi said that the Supreme Court had given its ruling against a ban on the film but now a 'Janta curfew' would be imposed to its release. "As a mark of respect to the Republic Day on 26 January, we are not calling for a 'bandh' now but we are calling for a Janta curfew," he said.
He claimed that historians who were shown the film by the censor board were also of the opinion that the movie should not be released. Meanwhile, there has been no confirmation from Bhansali on the 'letter' sent to Karni Sena group.
Earlier in the day, a report said that some multiplexes and single-screen cinemas in Gujarat have decided to not screen the movie fearing violence. The owner of Wide Angle Multiplex, which has theatres in Ahmedabad city and Mehasana, said it will not screen the film till the dispute between the Rajput community leaders and the film producers is resolved.
In Rajkot, following a meeting between theatre owners and representatives of Karni Sena, it was reportedly decided that the film won't be screened either in multiplexes or single-screen theatres in the city. "No theatre would screen 'Padmaavat'. The decision was taken in the meeting. Leaders of the Rajput community and the owners of multiplex and single-screen theatres attended the meeting," claimed Rajbha Zala, secretary of the Saurashtra unit of Karni Sena.
Rajput groups tried to block roads by burning tyres in Banaskantha, Mehasana, Surendranagar and Bhuj in protest against the film, set to release on January 25. To stop the release of the movie, the Karni Sena has called for a nation-wide shutdown on the same day. Kalvi himself will be present in Mumbai to ensure that the bandh remains effective, said a report.
'Padmaavat', starring Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor in key roles is scheduled to release on January 25.