The film fraternity has expressed shock and outrage at the vicious assault on Sanjay Leela Bhansali on the sets of his film Padmavati in Jaipur on Friday. The filmmaker was slapped and his hair was pulled by protesters who alleged that the film distorts history.
Members of the Rajput Karni Sena stormed the film’s sets at the historic Jaigarh Fort and assaulted Mr Bhansali, filming the incident on their mobile phone. They also vandalised equipment.
Police said that five people, who were detained for assaulting Mr Bhansali and vandalising the film set, were released today after no complaint was registered.
Padmavati, a historical drama, is based on the story of Queen Padmini, who famously refused to submit to Emperor Alauddin Khilji when he arrived at the Chittorgarh fort with his army. The queen killed herself along with scores of other women before he stormed the fort.
The protesters alleged that the film has love scenes between Queen Padmini and Alauddin Khilji, played by actors Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh. The allegations are unconfirmed, but the Rajput Karni Sena demands that Mr Bhansali “delete such scenes”.
“We had warned the filmmaker against presenting wrong facts. When we came to know about the shooting, we gathered there and protested,” said a leader of the group, Narayan Singh.
Five people had been detained by the police yesterday for assaulting Mr Bhansali and vandalising the movie set. They were let go today after the police said that no complaint had been filed in the matter.
The Jaipur police had also been quoted by the Press Trust of India as saying that Mr Bhansali has decided to stop filming in the area.
Since yesterday, Bollywood has come out strongly in Mr Bhansali’s support and called for strict police action.
Mr Bhansali is one of the most acclaimed filmmakers in the Indian film industry and his recent films Bajirao Mastani and Ram Leela were huge hits.