The official D-day for Sanjay Leela Bhansali and his team is hours away, and yet the chaos around it refuses to die down. For the press, Padmaavat was screened in selected cities on Tuesday evening.
One would imagine that the release of the film would mean that the team can heave a sigh of relief. However, as of January 23 evening, mayhem ensued with multiplexes being vandalised and burnt down. Ministers continued to condemn the film’s release and the Karni Sena members resorted to giving mixed signals – they wouldn’t mind watching the film before the release but there still might be consequences.
In Gurugram, the district administration has enforced prohibitory orders till Sunday to maintain law and order situation. Section 144 of the CrPc was also imposed around various cinema halls.
Protesters block Gurgaon’s Wazirpur-Pataudi road agitating against #Padmaavat (ANI)
Updates: https://t.co/jx0dagWfcr pic.twitter.com/YwPTlFMYKP
— NDTV (@ndtv) January 24, 2018
“Following imposition of Section 144, there is prohibition on presence of people carrying firearms and other articles capable of causing injury, raising slogans and exhibiting placards within 200 metres radius of the cinema halls and multiplexes from January 23 to 28,” Gurugram deputy commissioner Vinay Pratap Singh told Hindustan Times.
On Monday evening, some unidentified persons had reportedly vandalised a bus near Narsinghpur, Madhya Pradesh. Police had said that the men initially tried to burn the vehicle’s tyres but instead broke the windows and windshield. Soon enough, reports stated that they headed to Raheja Mall on Sohna Road, where they broke the windows of Pizza Hut and Burger King outlets, before entering the reception of the adjoining Carnival Cinemas, where they damaged property, including LED television sets.
More than 150 four-wheelers and two-wheelers were damaged by a mob on Tuesday evening in Ahmedabad, targeting three malls with multiplexes and a standalone theatre complex. Karni Sena’s Gujarat unit chief Raj Shekhwat denied any involvement. The malls, Acropolis, Ahmedabad One, Himalaya Mall, and the standalone theatre complex Cinemex, were vandalised despite theatre owners declaring they would not screen the film.
#Gujarat: A group of men vandalised the area outside a multiplex in Ahmedabad’s Thaltej and torched vehicles in protest against #Padmaavat pic.twitter.com/UmvZfP7NgO
— ANI (@ANI) January 23, 2018
Incidents tk place at 3-4 locations simultaneously.Police managed to stop protesters frm entering multiplexes&malls.48 ppl were picked up last night frm various locations under act of rioting.Key conspirators identified after interrogation,4 FIRs registered:AK Singh,CP, Ahmedabad
— ANI (@ANI) January 24, 2018
Last night, Jaykumar Rawal, Maharashtra Minister, appealed people to not watch Padmaavat and instead head to watch Salman Khan’s Tiger Zinda Hai.
I would appeal please don’t watch this. There are so many other movies. Tiger Zinda Hai, look at Salman Khan’s movies. It inspires so much, you feel like joining the Army. That kind of themes you should come up with.: Jaykumar Rawal, Maharashtra Minister #Padmaavat pic.twitter.com/0PdvXGsPve
— ANI (@ANI) January 23, 2018