Padmavati: Maharashtra govt to provide security to theatres, K'taka minister also gives assurance


Entertainment, Bollywood

Amid multilple protests against the film and controversies galore, two governments have come out in support of the film.

Deepika Padukone in a still from 'Padmavati.'

Mumbai/ Belagavi: The Maharashtra government is doing a security assessment of actor Deepika Padukone and will also provide security to theatres, if needed, in the wake of protests against Bollywood film 'Padmavati', Minister of State for Home Ranjit Patil said on Thursday.

The film's director Sanjay Leela Bhansali has already been provided security, he said.

The minister also said that a communication from Rajput community objecting to the "content" in the upcoming Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie had also been received.

The government is doing a security assessment for actor Padukone, who plays the lead role in the film, he said.

There were reports of threats to the actor from fringe groups amid the controversy over the movie's content. Organisations like the Shri Rajput Karni Sena (SRKS) have been protesting, claiming the film distorts history and hurts sentiments.

The SRKS has called for a country-wide bandh on December 1, the day the film is slated to be released.

"We have received a communication from the Rajput community. Different members of the community from various places across the state have put forward their demands. We are ascertaining the steps to be taken. Our first priority is a middle path, that is agreeable to both parties," Patil told PTI.

If mediation doesn't work out, the government will provide security to theatres as per protocol and past precedents, he added.

Asked to comment on the SRKS's reported threats, Patil said the government is assessing the security of the actor.

"We have already provided security to Sanjay Leela Bhansali as he was found to be at risk. Now, a security assessment of Deepika Padukone is being done. If she is found to be at risk, adequate steps will be taken. However, nobody's threat can be taken at the face value until the government assesses it," he said.

Padukone had on Tuesday hit out against those protesting the release of 'Padmavati' and reportedly said that "we've regressed as a nation".

Meanwhile, Karnataka Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy said that the state government will ensure adequate security to maintain law and order during the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali-directed period drama 'Padmavati' in the state.

He also said that the censor board's decision will be final on the concerns relating to the content of the movie.

Reddy was responding to BJP MLC Leher Singh during the zero hour in Karnataka Legislative Council.

Pointing to large scale protests and outrage that the movie is facing in different parts of the country including Bengaluru, Singh urged the state government to ban it keeping maintenance of law and order in mind.

Rajput community members had on Wednesday staged a huge demonstration and held a rally in Bengaluru against the film, alleging it distorted history.

The protesters claimed that the movie was fictitious and portrayed in a poor light, Rani Padmavati, the legendary 13th century queen of Chittor, whom they worship as a Goddess.

Noting that the government cannot take any decision on the movie without knowing what has been depicted in it, with  the censor board being the final authority in such cases, Reddy said, "on law and order, we will provide adequate security."

Bhansali has been facing trouble since he started shooting for the movie.

The set of the movie was vandalised twice -- in Jaipur and Kolhapur -- and the director was roughed up by members of the Karni Sena during the Jaipur schedule of the film earlier this year.

The Supreme Court had recently refused to entertain a plea seeking a stay on the release of 'Padmavati', saying the censor board was yet to certify the movie.