Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh Move SC Against Padmaavat Release; CJI Bench to Hear Plea Tomorrow

Miraj Cinema, a single screen theatre in Balaghat, screened four shows of the movie on Thursday from 2pm to 8pm. Around 1,000 people watched the movie.

New Delhi: The governments of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh moved the Supreme Court on Monday, seeking modification of its order allowing pan-India exhibition of controversial movie Padmaavat, which is scheduled for release on January 25.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud agreed to hear the plea by the two BJP-ruled states on Tuesday.

In their submission to the court, the two state governments contended that they were empowered under the Cinematograph Act to stop exhibition of a movie on grounds of law and order. Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for Viacom 18 the producers of the Deepika Padukone-starrer, opposed urgent hearing on any such interim applications.

The Supreme Court had last week paved the way for the all-India release of 'Padmaavat' — based on legendary queen Padmini — staying bans imposed by some states and restraining other states from issuing similar notifications.

Rajput groups, led by the Karni Sena, have staged violent opposition to the film starring Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh, despite clearance by the Censor Board and a change of name from ‘Padmavati’ to ‘Padmaavat’.

Members of some of these outfits, including the Karni Sena and other Rajput organisations, damaged Noida’s DND flyover toll plaza counters and set ablaze a barrier. The DND being toll free, the counters were non- operational.

In Jodhpur, Karni Sena leaders met theatre owners, seeking their cooperation against the screening of the movie in single screens and multiplexes. The team "requested" the owners to not screen the movie until the Supreme Court decides on the review petition by the Rajasthan government.