ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Game of Hurt Sentiments

Only when you have the power, can you afford to be hurt, and to show it.

When a Hindi feature film, Padmavati, based on an epic poem written centuries ago, occupies the attention of elected representatives and the media in India for weeks, you have to wonder about the direction the politics of protest is taking. Even though India has witnessed increasing incidents of mob violence encouraged by a silent state, it is remarkable that the protests of a localised community, the Rajputs, who the Karni Sena claims to represent, have so quickly found supporters across the country. Chief ministers of five states, all ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and several elected representatives from the BJP, have supported the protestors who demanded that the director and lead actress be beheaded and that the film be banned or burned.

The reasons they list for their objections are that the film hurts Rajput sentiments, distorts their history, defames Rani Padmini and her honour, and glorifies and glamorises the ­Muslim ruler Alauddin Khilji. They are also unhappy that the Rajput “community” was not consulted in the making of the film. But what seems to trouble them the most is the fear that the film depicts intimate scenes and a possible romance between Khilji and Padmavati.

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Updated On : 24th Jan, 2018
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