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Day before Padmaavat release, Karni Sena says won’t allow film screening, come what may

Shri Rajput Karni Sena chief Lokendra Singh Kalvi said his organisation won’t allow the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavaat at any cost.

india Updated: Jan 24, 2018 19:32 IST
Agencies
Agencies
Jaipur / New Delhi
Padmaavat,Padmavati movie,Karni Sena
Karni Sena chief Lokendra Singh Kalvi addresses a press conference in Jaipur over the release of the film Padmaavat.(PTI)

A day ahead of the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmaavat, the Shree Rajput Karni Sena continued to fiercely oppose the controversy-mired film, with its chief patron Lokendra Singh Kalvi insisting that a ‘janta curfew’ will be imposed on theatres screening the movie.

Kalvi said his organisation won’t allow the release of Padmavaat at any cost, even if he is arrested. “January 25 (the film’s release) may come and go but we won’t let the film release, come what may,” he said.

He also sought to pin the blame for the widespread violence, reportedly carried out at many places by members of his outfit, on film director Bhansali. (Updates)

He rejected reports that some Karni Sena members had watched the film ahead of its release, terming them as rumours.

He denied the role of the Karni Sena in the violence in Ahmedabad, saying there were many organisations protesting and creating panic in its name.

Claiming that he can be arrested at any point of time and this can be his last press conference before authorities pick him up, he called on all social organisations and public to come together to make his call for ‘janta curfew’ a success.

A janta curfew will be imposed at any cost in film halls to stop the film’s screening, Kalvi said. He claimed that Shiv Sena leaders had assured the Karni Sena of support on the issue in Maharashtra.

Kalvi also alleged that a dream sequence between the characters of Alauddin Khilji and Rani Padmavati existed in the controversial film, which, he said, was “intolerable”.

“Those who watched the film on the invitation by the censor board few days back have said that there is a dream sequence between Alauddin Khilji and Rani Padmavati in the film. We have been demanding that there should be no dream sequence and no romantic scene between the two,” he said.

The filmmakers, however, have assured in the past that no dream sequence exists in the movie. There is no such dream sequence in the movie, according to a PTI journalist who has seen the film.

Kalvi also claimed that a section of media had wrongly reported that members of the Karni Sena had seen the film. “This is not true and we are firm on our stand against the film,” he said.

Blaming Bhansali for the entire crisis, he said there were several cases registered against Bhansali in different districts of Gujarat for his earlier film Ramleela.

Quoting Mahatma Gandhi’s favourite prayer song Ishwar Allah Tero Naam, Sabko Sammati De Bhagwan, he said they always wanted a peaceful protest but the situation has gone out of control courtesy Bhansali’s “adamant attitude”.

Kalvi alleged that the historians who have been called by the censor board had time and again said till their throats grew hoarse that “historical facts” have been ignored by Bhansali but to no avail.

“If their opinion didn’t matter, why were they invited,” he asked.

Striking a defiant pose, the Karni Sena leader said he and other outfit leaders may be arrested and bullets fired but the protest would continue in states like Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.

Meanwhile, the Chittorgarh fort was closed on Wednesday in view of the deteriorating law and order situation. A heavy police contingent was deployed at the fort as some women protesters had vowed to perform ‘jauhar’ (ritual self-immolation) on Wednesday.

Some women attempted to go towards the fort but were stopped by police, and later the fort was closed.

First Published: Jan 24, 2018 18:46 IST