The Padmavati controversy is getting uglier by the day. After a fringe group, Karni Sena, threatened to chop off actress Deepika Padukone's nose yesterday, Chatriya Samaj, a group from Uttar Pradesh, issued an open threat and announced a reward of Rs 5 crore to any one who beheads Padmavati director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and actress Deepika Padukone. Meanwhile, the Mumbai police has given special security cover to the actress following the threats. The film Padmavati that is slated to release on December 1 stars Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh. The movie has been embroiled in one controversy after other and the critics are calling for a complete ban on the film. They accuse Mr Bhansali of playing with historical facts and showing Rani Padmini in a bad light.
While fringe groups and Rajput protesters across India are taking to streets - sloganeering, demonstrating and preventing tourists from visiting the Chittorgarh Fort - the social networking site Twitter is abuzz with strong reactions, both for and against the film.
Here are some strong reactions from the ones who want to see Padmavati banned:
A Twitter user calls the film ' Dubai Funded':
Some openly support the fringe group Karni Sena and calls the film 'dilution of historical facts'.
Rani Padmavati saved her honour from Barbarians, now need to Protect her memory & Image from Dubai Funded Bollywood.- Ishkaran S. Bhandari (@Ish_Bhandari) November 17, 2017
#DeepikaThreatened we support Karni Sena. Padmavati should be banned and Deepika Bhansali should be arrested and prosecuted.- DN SHUKLA (@dnshukla18) November 16, 2017
Some users also say that in the name of freedom of expression, the film has brought dishonor for Rani Padmavati.
Freedom of Expression doesn't mean to dilute history and respected characters of history . JAI PADMAVATI #BanPadmavatiMovie- Amarjeet Rathore (@vistadreamz) November 17, 2017
What the marauding Islamic invaders could not do - we the sovereign secular democratic republic of Independent India has done - dishonor Ma Padmavati in the name of freedom of Expression- MRV (@MRVChennai) November 17, 2017
Several voices from the film fraternity have come out in support of the film. Veteran actress Shabana Azmi called the beheading threat 'reprehensible' and stated that she stands with Padmavati. Here's her tweet:
You make a movie with historical, revered and hated characters, play around with the truth and call it a work of fiction. #Padmavati. That's hypocritical.- Savio Rodrigues (@PrinceArihan) November 17, 2017
Some users criticized that a handful of fringe groups cannot decide whether majority of Indians should or should not see the film and their undue protest is a 'mockery of democracy', they wrote. While there are many fans who cannot wait to see the film and tweeted support for Deepika Padukone and Sanjay Leela Bhansali:
So many people rejecting Padmavati before even seeing it, just like how they reject most new-born girls in Rajasthan.- Gabbbar (@GabbbarSingh) November 16, 2017
Apart from people taking sides for and against the film, there were some who threw light on more pressing issues:
They stopped him with #RamLeela, they stopped him with #BajiraoMastani, now they stop him with #Padmavati. The people have shown their verdict for the first two, the latter will speak for itself. Who is with me for #PadmavatiFirstDayFirstShow ?- Namrata Uchil (@namratauchil) November 15, 2017
Rajasthan-- Mahim Pratap Singh (@mayhempsingh) November 16, 2017
Pending corruption cases: 1555 (1st in India)
Crimes against SC/ST: 6998 (2nd)
Rape: 3644 (3rd)
Crimes against women: 28165 (4th)
Biggest issue: #Padmavati
Thanks to Padmavati Film controversy just because of it, Many people especially youngsters came to know about this History, which have no place in school books- Anshul Saxena (@AskAnshul) November 17, 2017
One thing is clear after all these threats against Padmavati: we need to create more jobs in India. Not enough people have work here and all that free time is channelised in being rebels without a cause.- Nikhil Taneja (@tanejamainhoon) November 17, 2017
A Twitter user also offered a 'long-time solution':
Karni Sena has done a LOT more damage to Rajput reputation with the way they've handled #Padmavati. More than any Bollywood movie could ever do.- Random Thoughts (@random_glimpses) November 16, 2017
Best long-term solution to issues like #Padmavati is to have a body of historians/ academics under #ICHR to which scripts of historicals should be submitted. Movies should be made after approval of this body. This is Ugly.- Ratan Sharda (@RatanSharda55) November 17, 2017
Meanwhile, reports say that the film was submitted to the Censor Board of Film Certification, commonly called censor board, for approval only last Friday.
Sources indicate that it would be very difficult for the producers to stick to the December 1 schedule if the Censor Board of Film Certification (CBFC) strictly abides by the norms.