Karni Sena attack theatre, say ‘this is our way of giving it back to Deepika’

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Controversies around Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati refuse to end. In a fresh development, members of Rajput Karni Sena vandalised a cinema hall in Kota, Rajasthan, as the theatre was screening the film’s trailer. The attack came just as the film’s leading lady, Deepika Padukone, made her view known on the demand for a ban on the magnum opus. She said, “It’s absolutely appalling. Where have we reached as a nation? We have regressed.”

Deepika Padukone
Deepika Padukone

Speaking to mid-day, Vijendra Singh Kalyanwat, the spokesperson of Karni Sena, defends the outfit’s attack on the Kota theatre. “If the actor reacts to us, this is our way of giving it back. We will do whatever we can. Hum kanoon ko haath main kya, humare kadmon main bhi lenge! We have written our history with our blood and we won’t tolerate Bhansali distorting it.”

Also read: Subramanian Swamy snubs Deepika Padukone over Padmavati row, questions her Indian citizenship

Vandalism at Kota theatre
Vandalism at Kota theatre

Ever since the Ranveer Singh, Shahid Kapoor and Padukone-starrer was mounted, the fringe groups expressed their concern over the “distortion of history”. Their demand was that the filmmaker run his film past them. Point out how Bhansali has conceded to their demands and is showing the film to a special committee, and he says, “For months, we reached out to him by way of letters and emails, but he didn’t respond. Now, even if he is showing the movie, we are not interested. We demand a complete ban on the film. What Bhansali is doing is spreading cultural terrorism.”

Also read: Deepika Padukone: Nothing can stop release of Padmavati

Vijendra Singh Kalyanwat
Vijendra Singh Kalyanwat

While the right-wing outfits’ primary concern was an alleged romantic sequence between Alauddn Khilji and Rani Padmini, now Kalyanwat asserts that the problem has extended to the depiction of the characters. “You can ask any Rajput woman and she will tell you, never has any woman danced the way Deepika Padukone is seen dancing in the song. There have been instances in the past where filmmakers have distorted our culture and tradition, but we won’t allow it this time.”

Also read: Focus on Rajasthani women’s literacy instead of ‘Padmavati’: Shashi Tharoor

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