Amid Padmavati Row, Venkaiah Naidu Says Violent Threats "Not Acceptable"

Vice President Venkaiah said there was now "a new problem over some films where people feel that they have hurt the sentiments of some religions or communities" and that has led to protests.

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Amid Padmavati Row, Venkaiah Naidu Says Violent Threats 'Not Acceptable'

Padmavati Controversy: Venkaiah Naidu said while protesting, people go overboard and announce rewards.

New Delhi: 

Highlights

  1. Nobody has the right to take law in their own hands: Naidu
  2. There have been threats of physical harm to the cast, crew of Padmavati
  3. Large protests against the movie have been staged in various states
Amid the huge controversy over the upcoming historical drama 'Padmavati', Vice President Venkaiah Naidu said today that violent threats and announcing rewards for physical harm was not acceptable in a democracy. Not directly referring to the controversy, but films and art in general, he warned against undermining the rule of law in the country but also added that one should not hurt the sentiments of others.

Speaking at a literary festival in New Delhi, Mr Naidu said there was now "a new problem over some films where people feel that they have hurt the sentiments of some religions or communities" and that has led to protests, news agency PTI reported. He said while protesting, some people go overboard and announce rewards.

"Whether these fellows have that much money or not, I doubt. Everyone is announcing Rs 1 crore reward. Is it so easy to have Rs 1 crore?" he said.

"This is not acceptable in a democracy. You have the right to protest in a democratic manner, go to the appropriate authorities...you cannot physically obstruct and can't give violent threats. Let us not undermine the rule of law," he said.

Stressing that he was not talking about a particular film but in general, Mr Naidu read out names of previously banned films like Haram Hawa, Kissa Kursi Ka and Aandhi.

"You have no right to take laws into your own hands. At the same time, you don't have the right to hurt the sentiments of others," Mr Naidu said.

His remarks, however, assume significance as they come amid protests against Sanjay Leela Bhansali-directed film 'Padmavati' by groups who say the film distorts history.

Some hardline leaders and groups, including a party of the BJP's Haryana unit, have announced rewards for beheading Mr Bhansali and actor Deepika Padukone who plays Queen Padmini in the movie. There have been other threats of physical harm to the cast and crew also.

On Friday, a body was found hanging off the Nahargarh fort in Jaipur with a message nearby saying "In protest of Padmavati". However, the police are yet to corroborate any links to the protests against the film.

With Inputs from PTI

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