The release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Deepika Padukone’s upcoming film Padvamati has kicked up a storm like none other. The film is mired in controversies and opposition causing a delay in its release.
The film is deemed to be based on the life of Rajput queen Padmini and the Rajputs have accused Bhansali of distorting history and facts. The Rajput community has accused the film’s director Sanjay Leela Bhansali of dishonouring the former queen of Mewar, who is believed to have committed ‘jauhar’, the medieval practice in which female royals walked into funeral fires to embrace death over the dishonour of being taken captive.
In response to all this, the Madhya Pradesh (MP) Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has announced that the story of Rajput queen Padmini will be taught in MP schools from next year.
Chauhan made the announcement in Ujjain during a function organised by the Rajput community to felicitate him for banning the movie in the state.
“People are unaware of the life history of maharani Padmavati. The young generation is being taught distorted history and there is a need to teach them about the great personality of Padmavati,” he said.
MP textbooks at present mention the queen in a chapter on the siege of Chittorgarh, the capital of Mewar, by Allauddin Khilji, who is said to have been enamoured by the queen’s beauty and invaded the kingdom to take her as his wife.
Official sources said a separate chapter depicting Padmini’s courage and fearlessness will be included in textbooks from the next session.
Chouhan had earlier announced that a memorial of the queen will be built in MP and an award will also be instituted in her name.
The opposition Congress, however, called Chouhan’s move a publicity stunt for gaining political mileage.
“If the chief minister believes that maharani Padmavati is a ‘Rashtramata’ (mother of the nation) since his childhood, why he is he announcing it now? All the steps are being taken to please Rajput community for votes,” Congress Chief Spokesperson KK Mishra said.