With less than a week left for the release of Padmaavat, director Sanjay Leela Bhansali is not in a mood to take any more risks. The film, targeted by right-wing groups ever since the release of its trailer, is finally ready for release on January 25.
In a joint press conference held by Akshay Kumar and Sanjay Leela Bhansali, the Padmaavat director said, “We requested Akshay if he can shift the film (PadMan) because he is such a big star and our troubles might have increased if we would have released the film together. He agreed and will be grateful to him for a lifetime.”
To get its clearance from the censor board, the film underwent a lot of changes, including the title. The makers also recently released a disclaimer stating that the film was merely a work of fiction. In the song, ‘Ghoomar’, Deepika Padukone’s midriff was covered with some quick CGI work.
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Situation in the four states – Gujarat, Haryana, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh – remain tense despite the Supreme Court dismissing the ban imposed on the film’s release. The Karni Senas of Rajasthan continue to protest the film. According to reports, they have threatened to go on a bandh on January 25 and have warned the CBFC chief Prasoon Joshi from entering Jaipur for the literary fest.
Meanwhile, security in Delhi and NCR has been beefed up ahead of the release to prevent any law and order situation.
Lawyer Harish Salve, who had represented the filmmakers at the court, has received threats over the phone. A FIR has been filed in this respect.
While the BJP-ruled states have been vocal in their opposition to the film’s release, the members of the Congress party have been silent ever since the Supreme Court order. In poll-bound Rajasthan, incumbent chief minister, Vasundhara Raje had earlier said, “The sacrifice by Rani Padmini is a matter of honour and respect for all of us and hence we will not allow anyone to show disrespect to this honour.”
Before the SC order, the Congress had blamed the BJP government for stifling freedom of expression, but ever since the film got a nod from the apex court, the Opposition party has remained silent choosing not to take a stand ahead of the assembly election.