New Delhi, November 19 (The Indian Express): Controversies surrounding Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s historical film Padmavati refuses to die down.
Two days after a Meerut resident from the Kshatriya community announced a bounty of Rs 5 crore (US$ 770,000) on the heads of Bhansali and actor Deepika Padukone, Haryana BJP’s Chief Media Coordinator Kunwar Suraj Pal Amu doubled the amount and announced a reward of Rs 10 crore (US$ 1.5 million) for beheading them. Kunwar is a Rajput , the community to which Qeen Padmavati, belonged.
“Want to congratulate the Meerut youth for announcing Rs 5 crore (US$ 770,000) bounty for beheading of Deepika and Bhansali. We will reward the ones beheading them with Rs 10 crore (US$ 1.5 million), and also take care of their family’s needs,” Asian News International quoted Suraj Pal Amu, Haryana’s BJP Chief Media Coordinator, as saying on Sunday.
Amu’s remarks comes after Thakur Abhishek Som of Sardhana Chaubisi, who claimed affiliation to the Samajwadi Party, said the Kshatriya community would not tolerate wrongful portrayal of the queen and meddling with its rich heritage while announcing a Rs 5 crore bounty on the heads of Bhansali and Deepika.
Amu also warned actor Ranveer Singh, saying he would break his legs if he did not take back his words supporting the director and the film.
“Agar tune apne shabd wapas nahin liye to teri taango ko todke tere haath mein de denge (If you don’t take back your words, we will break your legs and put it in your hand,” the BJP member said.
In his first remark since the controversy erupted, Ranveer Singh, who portrays Alauddin Khilji in the movie, had said he was 200 per cent behind Bhansali and supported his vision on the film.
Amu also lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for remaining silent on the issue and said he would quit the party if needed.
“The PM, Rajnath Singh , Rahul Gandhi, everyone is silent on the issue. Modi speaks only in time of elections .He has to speak out on the issue. PM has to exercise his powers to strike down the film,” he said.
Amu also criticized Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje after she asked Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani not to release the film till necessary changes are made so that sentiments of any “community are not hurt”.
The BJP leader said there was no point in making changes to the film as he would not let the movie be screened.
“Wont tolerate distortion of facts regarding our history,” Amu said.
In the film “Padmavati” , Alauddin Khijli (Ranveer Singh) invades Chittor in Rajasthan to capture its beautiful queen, Padmini (Deepika Padukone). The Karni Sena and other fringe Rajput caste groups objected to a dream sequence involving Khilji and Rani Padmini. But Bhansali has denied that there is any such scene.
Meanwhile, reacting to news of the screening of Padmavati being deferred, Karni Sena chief Lokendra Singh Kalvi, who has been spearheading the protest, said they would wait for a few days and then decide on future plans.
“What right does Deepika Padukone have to challenge us that the movie will get released. Hasn’t she brought shame to Sanjay Leela Bhansali? Hundreds of millions of rupees, which did not belong to Bhansali, has come from the Middle-East, sent by Dawood,” Kalvi alleged.
Dawood Ibrahim is an Indian and terror financiar who is living as a fugitive in a Muslim country.
Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister, Keshav Prasad Maurya, also joined the bandwagon in attacking Padmavati and said the government won’t let the film be releases in the State.
“We won’t let Padmavati release in Uttar Pradesh unless and until the objectionable scenes are removed,” Maurya said.
Meanwhile, Director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and the producers of the film have said that they have postponed the date of release of the film. The film is yet to get a censor certificate because Censor Board had sent back the film saying that certain technical formalities had not been adhered to when the film was submitted.
(The featured image at the top shows the Haryana BJP Media Secretary Suraj Pal Amu)