The Uttar Pradesh government has asked the Information and Broadcasting Ministry to defer the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati, saying there was “public anger” about the “distorted historical facts”, which could lead to a law-and-order problem.

The period film is set to release on December 1.

“I was told the censor board has not yet taken a call on its certification,” Principal Secretary (Home) Arvind Kumar told The Indian Express. “Hence, the state government wanted to share intelligence inputs it received about reactions from various social organisations so the censor board can consider them while making a decision.”

The Uttar Pradesh government said the administration will be busy on December 1 with counting votes for the local body elections and making arrangements for Muslim festival Barawafat.

“While movies based on facts, with positive stories, motivate and influence the society to move on the right path, movies with distorted historical facts, exaggeration, false and fictional stories create a vicious atmosphere in the nation,” read Kumar’s letter, which was sent to the Central Board Of Film Certification, as well.

The letter is the latest in the controversy around Padmavati. On Tuesday, members of the Rajput Karni Sena vandalised a mall in Rajasthan’s Kota that screened the film’s trailer. On Wednesday morning, more than 500 members of the Karni Sena and other groups gathered at Freedom Park in Bengaluru to demand that Padmavati not be released.

On Wednesday, Bharatiya Janata Party MLA Ram Kadam warned that if Bhansali did not remove “objectionable scenes” from Padmavati, he would not be allowed to shoot any movie in future.

After repeated threats, the Mumbai Police have stepped up security at the filmmaker’s office and home, ANI reported. He has also been provided with an armed guard.

Padmavati, starring Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor, has been in the midst of a controversy since January, when members of the Rajput Karni Sena assaultedBhansali on the set of the movie in Jaipur. The shoot was shifted to Maharashtra. The Karni Sena is against a supposed romantic scene between Rani Padmavati and Alauddin Khilji, which Bhansali had said was not in the film.