In a fresh case of arson, the set of filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali's film Padmavati in Kolhapur, Maharashtra, was attacked and set on fire at about 1 am today by an unidentified group who oppose the film. While the actors Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh were not on sets, Bhansali is also said to be safe.
Months after director Sanjay Leela Bhansali was attacked on the sets of Padmavati in Jaipur, the film’s sets were vandalised and set on fire in Kolhapur on Tuesday night in a fresh case of vandalism. According to reports, animals were present on Padmavati sets when they were set on fire and a horse is said to be badly injured. None of the film’s cast or crew was there at Kolhapur’s Masai plateau on Tuesday night where the sets have been erected.
About 40 to 50 people reached the sets of the film armed with petrol bombs, stones and lathis. They allegedly fought off the bodyguards and bouncers who were present at the sets. The security was beefed at the sets in the light of Jaipur incident. Before setting the venue on fire, they also damaged the cars parked around the sets. After a complaint was filed on Wednesday, a few suspects have been taken into custody. NCP MLA Jitendra Awhad has condemned the action and demanded swift action.
Confirming the news, Shobha Sant, CEO Bhansali Productions told Pinkvilla, "A few people entered and had put the set on fire in the early morning hours. The main cast wasn’t present at that time. However, our costumes are completely damaged.” She said an investigation is on and an official complaint will be filed soon.
After the director was attacked in Jaipur’s Jaigarh Fort and the sets vandalised, he had shifted the shooting from Rajasthan. Certain fringe Rajput outfits have claimed that the film has a dream sequence where Rani Padmavati and Alauddin Khilji will be seen in an intimate position. Bhansali and his production house have dismissed the reports and said no such scene exists. However, this has not stopped the attacks. Historians have also pointed out that Padmavat, the 16th century poem by Malik Muhammad Jayasi on which the film is based, is a work of fiction but to no avail. Bhansali had staged Padmavati as an opera in 2008.
The film starring Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor is being shot in Mumbai as well. While the reports suggest that Bhansali is safe and has rushed to the sets, the shooting has been stopped till further notice. In Padmavati, Deepika plays the titular character while Shahid plays her husband Raja Rattan Singh. Ranveer essays the character of Alauddin Khilji.