Bharatiya Janata Party MLA and former Jaipur royal family member Diya Kumari on Wednesday lent her voice to the campaign against Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati, saying the film’s release would “not be allowed” if it took “liberties” with history.
Kumari urged the Bollywood filmmaker to get its facts “verified” by a forum of historians and then release the film.
“No film should hurt the sentiments of any community by twisting historical facts,” she told reporters.
Promos of the film are out, stoking the controversy over the Deepika Padukone-Ranveer Singh-Shahid Kapoor starrer, slated to be released on December 1.
“If the movie does not display authentic history or takes liberties, it will not be allowed to be released,” the BJP MLA said.
Groups such as the Rajputs’ Karni Sena have been opposing the film, fearing that it would depict a romantic relationship between Rani Padmavati (Padukone) and Allaudin Khilji (Singh).
“The director should not wrongly depict the story of Rani Padmavati of Chittor. As a woman, I am hurt by the way the filmmaker is trying to depict her. She was a symbol of honour and respect,” Kumari said.
State Karni Sena president Mahipal Makrana said at the joint press conference the Sena would not allow the film to be released and protests would take place.
“The production team had assured us in written that we will be shown the film before its promotion and it will be released only after that, but they have not fulfilled their
promise,” Makrana said, stressing the film should not portray “love scene between Padmavati and Khilji or even a dream sequence”.
The ruling party MLA said she would raise the issue at every platform to “protect the honour” of Padmavati.
She added the Rajput community would not allow any distortion of the “valiant history of Rajasthan and sacrifice of its people in fighting barbarians”.
If the film is released, it would become a recorded document with distorted facts, she said.
In a statement, a member of the former Chomu royal family of Rajasthan also said it was opposed to any factual distortion in the film.
“It is completely unnecessary to hurt sentiments, distort history in the name of cinematic liberty,” Rukshmani Kumari said.
The anti-film lobby has also won the support of a section of film distributors who said they would not buy its distribution rights unless the controversy was resolved.
“We are also against the distortion of historical facts and will purchase the distribution rights only after the controversy is settled,” Raj Bansal, a leading film distributor, had said.