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Panipat row: Protests in Jaipur, Bharatpur, Bikaner

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Jaipur, Dec 10 (IANS) The protest against film Panipat for portraying king Surajmal in bad light escalated when protesters smashed window glasses of the Inox cinema hall here on Monday. Also, the show at Raj Mandir, the renowned cinema hall, was cancelled.

Bharatpur observed a shutdown against allegedly wrong portrayal of the erstwhile king in the film. Bikaner too witnessed protests with some people getting shut the doors of a cinema hall.

In the state capital, people gathered in large numbers at the Surajmal Square, which has became a protest site.

State Rajasthan Minister Vishwendra Singh, a descendant of Surajmal, joined the protest and demanded immediate ban on the film.

Speaking on the occasion, he accused film producers and directors of tampering with history to raise viewership. Earlier, they produced Jodha-Akbar, then Padmavati, whose name had to be changed to Padmavat after violence in state, and now they have come up with Panipat without studying its context, he said.

“The film projects that we demanded the Agra Fort (for helping the Marathas). That’s not the reality. Maharaj Surajmal expanded his kingdom through his bravery,” Singh said.

“We can’t term censor board wrong. This is the fault of producer and director. They never do in-depth research. The filmmakers should get in touch with the family of a person being depicted in a film, and do comprehensive research,” said the descendant of Surajmal.

The matter would be raised in a court, he said and added, yesterday was Sunday and we could not follow it up. “On Tuesday we shall be meeting lawyers,” Singh said.

On violence over the film, he said, “I criticise this violence. It will not help anyone. I know Ashutosh Govalkar wants this violence to happen, which could increase viewership of the film.”.

A complaint has also been filed against film producer, director and script writer at the Mansarovar police station by one Ram Avatar Palsaniyan and others.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Monday took to Twitter to demand intervention of the Censor Board to settle the locals’ claims with regard to Gowariker’s ‘Panipat’.

“This situation where so many reactions are coming out regarding Panipat should not have come up. the Censor Board should intervene in the matter and take cognizance of the same. Distributors should build a dialogue with the Jat community without any delay,” the Chief Minister tweeted.

Before production of a film, characters of the film should be studied to be portrayed properly to prevent any dispute at a later stage, Gehlot said. “I believe art should be respected. An artist should be respected. But any caste, religion and legends should never be shown disrespect,” he remarked.

The film is based on the Third Battle of Panipat, fought between the Marathas and Afghan king Ahmad Shah Abdali in 1761.

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