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Theatres vandalised in Rajasthan over Salman’s remark, Tiger Zinda Hai faces protests

Members of the Valmiki community staged protests and burnt effigies of Salman Khan outside cinema halls in Rajasthan on Friday over the alleged use of a derogatory word by the actor during a promotional event.

jaipur Updated: Dec 23, 2017 07:00 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Rajasthan news,Theatres vandalised,Salman’s remark
People of Valmiki Samaj burnt effigies of Salman Khan and Shilpa Shetty in Udaipur on Friday.(HT Photo)

Members of the Valmiki community staged protests and burnt effigies of Salman Khan outside cinema halls in Rajasthan on Friday over the alleged use of a derogatory word by the actor during a promotional event.

The community is aggrieved over the alleged use of pejorative language by Salman, and by Shilpa Shetty earlier. At some places, the protesters vandalised properties. Police arrested around 40 protesters.

In Jaipur, the protesters tore posters and film banners at Ankur, Paras and Raj Mandir cinema halls, where Salman-Katrina Kaif starrer ‘Tiger Zinda Hai’ was screened. In Kota, Valmiki activists broke a glass of Akash Mall where a multiplex is situated.

Last month, the state was roiled by protests by Shri Rajput Karni Sena, which issued death threats to the actors and director of film ‘Padmavati’, forcing the producers to defer its release.

The National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) has sought a reply from the information and broadcasting ministry and the police commissioners of Delhi and Mumbai over complaints against Salman and Shilpa for allegedly using derogatory language in TV shows.

The commission issued the notice after it received a complaint from ex-chairman of the Delhi Commission for Safai Karamcharis Harnam Singh who, in his complaint, said the actors used the word ‘bhangi’ in TV shows which insult the Valmiki community.

Salman had used the word during the promotion of ‘Tiger Zinda Hai’, while referring to his dancing skills. Shilpa had reportedly used the word to describe how she looks at home.

“A few days ago, Salman Khan in an interview used ‘bhangi’ word. Constitutionally also, using this word is an abuse; it has hurt the sentiments of Valmiki community,” Jitendra Hatwal Valmiki, a social worker, told Hindustan Times.

“Today, people of Valmiki community tore the posters of Tiger Zinda Hai movie at Raj Mandir, Ankur and Paras cinema halls, staged demonstrations and burnt an effigy of Salman Khan,” he said.

“Our demand is that Salman Khan and Shilpa Shetty should apologise to Valmiki community; till then the movie should be stopped in the state,” Jitendra said.

Additional commissioner of police Prafulla Kumar said around 30-35 people were arrested under section 151 of CrPC.

“Protests were held by the Valmiki community at different places in the state outside cinema halls, but movie watchers were not affected. Police are providing protection,” said Raj Bansal, distributor of Yash Raj Films in Jaipur. “Salman Khan had used the word in an interview some four years ago and many of his movies got released during this period; then why this protest now?”

In Kota, around 35 Valmiki youngsters carrying sticks tore posters at Aakash multiplex and later vandalised glass of a mall gate. Anand Yadav, circle inspector of Gumanpura police station, said five persons -- three minors -- were detained. “No complaint has been received from mall or multiplex authorities so far.”

At Ajmer, the Valmiki community under the banner Bhim Sena protested at three halls and demanded that screening of the movie be stopped. About 50 people attempted to tear film posters. Police rounded up some people and let them go after a warning.

In Udaipur, around 150-200 people shouted slogans outside the collectorate. Later they submitted a memorandum to Bhupalpura police station, demanding that a case be lodged against Salman and Shilpa under SC/ST Act and the actors are arrested.

First Published: Dec 22, 2017 20:38 IST