<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Violent threats and rewards for physical harm are not acceptable in a democracy, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu said on Saturday as he warned forces against undermining the rule of law, in comments that come amid widespread protests against movie ‘Padmavati’.The Vice-President also said that the one should not hurt people’s sentiments and warned against selective condemnation, though he did not directly refer to the yet-to-be-released Bollywood period drama.Speaking at an event in Delhi, Naidu said there is a new problem of people feeling that some films have hurt their sentiments, and this has led to protests. Some people go overboard and announce rewards, he said.Groups claiming to represent the Rajput community have protested and issued bounties for murder and mutilation of director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and lead actress Deepika Padukone, and have also been endorsed by a section of politicians, for “distortion of history.””Whether these fellows have that much money or not, I doubt. Everyone is announcing Rs one crore reward. Is it so easy to have Rs one crore? This is not acceptable in a democracy,” the Vice-President said.Protesters say the alleged depiction of romance between legendry Hindu queen Padmini and Delhi Sultanate ruler Alauddin Khilji insults the Rajput community. The film’s makers have been denying the allegation.”You have the right to protest in a democratic manner, go to appropriate authorities… Protesters should protest lawfully, peacefully,” he said.He added, “You cannot physically obstruct and cannot issue violent threats. You have no right to take laws into your own hands. Let’s not undermine the rule of law.”The December 1 release has been deferred indefinitely by the makers and the highly anticipated magnum opus has been banned in multiple states, mostly ruled by the BJP.Naidu stressed that he was not talking about a particular film. He, however, mentioned some movies such as Garam Hawa, Kissa Kursi Ka and Aandhi, which previously faced protests.”At the same time, you don’t have the right to hurt the sentiments of others”, he, however, said, also warning against selective condemnation and said it was wrong to link controversies to religion.Historians are divided over whether Padmavati ever existed. The movie is based on an epic 16th-century poem, ‘Padmavat’, by Sufi Muslim author Malik Muhammad Jayasi.”India always believed in pluralistic traditions and ethos and never allowed narrow and bigoted views or practices to rear their ugly heads. While dissent is agreeable, disintegration is not acceptable,” Naidu said.”That is the bottom line and any attempt to undermine integrity and unity of India by forces inimical to growth of India must be nipped in the bud.”A trader’s body was found hanging in Jaipur’s famous Nahargarh Fort with “we don’t just hang effigies… Padmavati” scribbled on a nearby rock on Friday, potentially marking a grotesque turn in the protests.Trouble started in January this year when Rajasthan-based fringe group Rajput Karni Sena assaulted Bhansali on the sets in Jaipur. In March, unidentified people vandalised the movie sets in Maharashtra’s Kolhapur district. Days after the movie’s trailer released, Karni Sena and other fringe Rajput groups came out on the streets to protest in hundreds.

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Vice-President warns against violence, bounties