Hindustan Times (Delhi)

Padmaavat heat ebbs, NCR peaceful 10 SENT TO JAIL, 8 TO JUVENILE HOME OVER BURNING OF BUS

MOVIE RELEASED Heavy security across NCR prevents violence; movie theatres and malls report low footfall

- Abhishek Behl and Vaibhav Jha htreporter­s@hindustant­imes.com Abhishek Behl abhishek.behl@hindustant­imes.com

NEWDELHI/GURGAON/NOIDA/GHAZIABAD: A day after violence shook the National Capital Region over the movie Padmaavat, the situation remained tense but largely peaceful as heavy police presence ensured there was no major incident reported on Thursday, the day of the movie’s nationwide release.

The footfall in malls across the NCR remained low as few patrons arrived to watch the movie in theatres, officials at various malls and movie theatres said.

Violence had erupted in Noida, Ghaziabad, Delhi, Gurgaon, parts of Rajasthan and districts of Uttar Pradesh and Haryana over the alleged controvers­ies in the movie. Many Rajput organisati­ons, such as the Shri Karni Sena, have expressed displeasur­e over the movie.

A mob even attacked a school bus that was ferrying students while a Haryana roadways bus was torched i n Gurgaon’s Bhondsi village.

Protesters had also burnt a UP transport bus in the early hours of Thursday on the Ghaziabad Link Road.


No untoward i ncident was reported in Delhi as several multiplexe­s in the capital screened the movie on Thursday amid tight security. And at the Satyam multiplex in west Delhi, the entire front row was occupied by uniformed security men, PTI reported.

A day after violence shook Gurgaon, the city witnessed heavy police presence at malls screening the movie. With section 144 of the CRPC in force, police had detained 32 people in Gurgaon for Wednesday’s incidents of violence.

Barring a minor incident, in which a handful of miscreants tried to block a road in Gurgaon’s Sector 10, no untoward case was reported from anywhere in the city on Thursday, police said.

“Those who are involved in violence, whether in Bhondsi, at Raheja Mall or any other place, would be brought to justice. They are being identified and will be arrested soon,” Gurgaon ACP Heera Singh, who was posted at Bhondsi police station, said.

Similarly, no incident of violence was reported at any of the multiplexe­s or theatres in Noida and Ghaziabad, officials said.

On Wednesday night, a UP transport bus filled with dozens of passengers was attacked by a mob in Barola village of Noida. Another state transport bus was torched in the early hours of Thursday on the Ghaziabad Link Road. In both the incidents, police have failed to make any arrests.

“The day passed by peacefully and no untoward incident was reported,” AK Singh, superinten­dent of police (city), said.


Due to the controvers­y and Wednesday’s incidents of violence across NCR, not many cinema enthusiast­s turned up for the movie at multiplexe­s.

At Noida’s Spice Mall, the turnout was fairly low as only around 2,000 people saw the film throughout Thursday. “We had set up 34 shows of Padmaavat on a single day at Spice Mall but the turnout was only 20-25%,” Vikas, manager, Spice Cinemas, said.

Cinema-goers said that they saw no reason for a controvers­y. “The movie was amazing and I think all the people should watch it. The way they have shown the pride and valour of Rajput community is incredible. There is no need for a controvers­y,” Jyotsana Pandey, a Noida resident, said.

“I will not shy away from telling my friends about this movie,” Aamir Hussain, a Delhi resident, said. GURGAON: A court on Thursday sent 10 accused to judicial custody over involvemen­t in a case where a Haryana Roadways bus was damaged and set ablaze by a group of people protesting against the release of Padmaavat movie at Bhondsi. Eight minors accused in the case were sent to an observatio­n home in Faridabad and later produced before the Juvenile Justice Board.

The driver of burnt bus, the complainan­t, claimed a group of 50 to 60 protestors were shouting slogans of Karni Sena as they attacked his bus as well as a school bus carrying children. The incident took place at Bhondsi village on Sohna highway at around 3.15pm.

The accused were booked for multiple charges i ncluding attempt to murder, rioting, damaging government property and preventing government employees from dischargin­g their duty on Wednesday, police said. Police officials said a total 32 people have been detained in Gurgaon.

The police meanwhile arrested five persons from Kherki Daula for blocking the Delhi-gurgaon Expressway, and burning tyres.

In the Bhondsi violence, police said a case has been registered on the complaint of Ombir, driver of the Haryana Roadways bus.

“The agitators were shouting slogans of Karni Sena... I was pulled out of the bus and beaten by the mob. When my conductor tried to save me he was also beaten”, the driver told police. He also alleged that the protestors doused the bus with petrol. “They also pelted stones on a bus of GD Goenka Public School,” the driver told police.

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