Mumbai: The controversy over Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s magnum opus Padmavati refuses to end. While Shri Rajput Karni Sena (SRKS) has warned to cut the nose of Deepika Padukone over the release of the upcoming film in December 1, a Meerut based Thakur leader, on Thursday, offered Rs 5 crore to anyone who beheads Padamvati director Bhansali and Deepika.
“Anyone who brings the head of Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Deepika Padukone will be rewarded with Rs 5 crore. Rani Ma Padmavati had sacrificed her life with 12,000 other women in mass immolation (Jauhar), and Bhansali has raised a question on her courage by showing her in bad light in his film,” the leader was quoted as saying in a leading daily.
Meanwhile, the Mumbai police has beefed up the security of Deepika after her getting threat calls that she could be physically harmed if she did not refrain from “inciting public sentiment’. Also, security has been provided to filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s as he was found to be a risk.
While The Quint got in touch with a friend of Deepika, the pal said the actor can’t stop laughing over the threat. “You are threatening to cut a woman’s nose by giving a mythological parallel as justification. If that is not a sign of regression, what is? Anyway, Deepika is not the least scared. She has been provided security but her movement remains far from restricted. She will continue to promote Padmavati, though now the entire Padmavati team has advised her to exercise caution in her pronouncements. So she won’t make any comments about the vandals masquerading as protesters. Her outburst against regressive elements was spontaneous and emotional.”
Says Deepika’s friend, “She’s more worried for her director Sanjay Leela Bhansali than herself. Deepika doesn’t fear the goons. She once told a friend, ‘The more you give in to irrational forces, and the more you cow down to bullies, the more they attack you. Never show your vulnerability even to those whom you love the most.’”
On the other hand, B-Town has come out in full support of director Bhansali and the film. Ashoke Pandit noted that such threats were a form of terrorism towards the creative fraternity of this country. “I strongly feel that the whole entertainment industry is under siege today. We are being terrorised, we are being accused, we are being beaten and threats are being issued to the creative people of the country. The film industry is being told you cannot think on your own. It is a form of terrorism, cultural terrorism. I strongly condemn the entire attitude of the so called protectors of the Rajput culture,” Pandit told ANI.
The period drama, starring Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor, has been facing protests from various groups, including Shri Rajput Karni Sena, for allegedly tampering with historical facts.