Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Tuesday said the government had not made a decision yet on the state police’s advice to not allow Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavat to be screened during Goa’s peak tourist season, The Times of India reported.
In a letter to the chief minister’s secretary, the police said it did not expect any major law-and-order situation to arise, but the government should “avoid giving people an opportunity to agitate at this stage” as the police are “engaged in arrangements” during the ongoing tourist season.
The police wrote the letter after the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Mahila Morcha and three other outfits petitioned the state to stop the screening of Padmavat and said it “is likely to hurt the sentiments of a large section of society”.
Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said if the film had been issued a censor certificate, it would not be stopped from being screened. “The government has to step in as a temporary measure if law and order is disturbed,” Parrikar told reporters. “If the certificate is given, I do not see any reason why we should interfere. The film was scheduled to be released in December when there was a chaotic situation in Goa.”
On January 8, Padmavat was cleared by the Central Board of Film Certification in December with a UA certificate and disclaimers about its depiction of fourteenth-century Rajasthani royalty and the practice of jauhar (mass suicide). The censor board, headed by Prasoon Joshi, appointed a panel of historians to look into the claim that the film contains historical inaccuracies. The movie was finally cleared with a few changes on the condition that Bhansali and Viacom18 Motion Pictures change the title from Padmavati to Padmavat to align it closer to its source material.
On Monday, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje had said Bhansali’s movie will not be screened in the state as the public’s emotions should be respected.
Padmavat, which has also been converted to 3D, was earlier slated for release on December 1. But repeated protests and threats of violence by Rajput groups, led by the Rajput Karni Sena, stalled the movie’s release and delayed its certification.