BJP & Congress on the same page on Padmavati
Members of both parties in Rajasthan said the filmmakers, accused of falsely depicting a relationship between Padmini & Khilji, must not offend sentiments”.
Members of both the principal political parties in Rajasthan told ET that the filmmakers, who are accused by several groups of falsely depicting a relationship between Rajput queen Padmini (also known as Padmavati) and Muslim ruler Alauddin Khilji, must not offend “people’s sentiments”.
Asked whether Congress does not stand up for freedom of expression, Pilot said: “We believe in freedom of expression and creativity but (what) if it is infringing upon some people’s sentiments?”
BJP’s Chittorgarh MP CP Joshi who led a delegation from Mewar to CM Raje on Saturday before she wrote to the Centre, told ET that “history should not be altered and twisted” in the movie. “Padmavati must be depicted in the original way she was. She did ‘jauhar’ (custom of self-immolation among women to avoid capture by foreign invaders) — her character should not be depicted in the wrong light,” he said. “I spoke to Smriti Irani and Rajyavardhan Rathore to intervene.”
A senior BJP leader in Rajasthan said the movie’s promos did much damage. “We got representations that Rajasthani women do Ghoomar dance with their faces covered. Also, a Rajput queen is never known to dance before people as shown in the trailer. This hurt people and the message travelled far and wide. We are alive to political repercussions.”
That may explain why no visible action was taken against the Shri Rajput Karni Sena, which had issued threats of physical harm against Deepika Padukone, who plays Rani Padmavati in the film.
Pilot says: “This issue came up 11 months ago. Then, Raje didn’t feel it appropriate to intervene and find a solution. If she had intervened then, the situation would not have come to such a pass. Now, when it became political, she is requesting for cuts. Now, it is face-saving, there is pressure from the community… now you cannot shed your responsibility. Why did she not do any arbitration at the right time?”
The BJP leader cited earlier said Congress was attacking Raje as they too can’t afford to displease Rajputs.
Meanwhile, confusion prevails in Rajasthan on the film’s content since no one has seen it so far besides select journalists in Delhi. Even BJP’s Joshi admitted that some people who had seen the movie told him that it contained nothing offensive about Padmavati or Rajputs. “That is what some people have told me. But let the censor board see it. Historians and royal families should see it — let them say they have no objection. Or make changes,” he said.
Arvind Singh Mewar, the custodian of theHouseof Mewaranddescendent of Chittor ruler Rawal Ratan Singh, is expected to be on the panel proposed by the CM. He said a commercial movie cannot do justice to the truth of Rajput history and sensitivity to the practice of jauhar. “This movie should not have been made at all. I feel the movie is far from reality and does not come under artistic licence of creativity.”