Veteran musician Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt today said that the Rajasthan government should make the movie “Padmaavat” tax free as it promotes Indian culture, especially of the state. The 67-year-old Mohan Veena exponent, who hails from Jaipur, said the “Ghoomar” song from the Sanjay Leela Bhansali-directed film promotes the folk music of Rajasthan. The period drama has been mired in controversy as the Karni Sena has opposed the release of the film, alleging it “distorts historical facts” and “hurts sentiments” of the Rajput community. The set of the movie was vandalised twice in Jaipur and Kolhapur, while Bhansali was roughed up by members of the Karni Sena last year. The Supreme Court has cleared the decks for the all-India release of “Padmaavat” on January 25 and stayed notifications and orders issued by Rajasthan and Gujarat prohibiting exhibition of the film in their states. “The Rajasthan government should at least make the movie ‘Padmaavat’ tax free as it promotes culture, especially of Rajasthan, worldwide,” Bhatt, the Grammy winner who visited Madhya Pradesh yesterday, told PTI.
“In fact, the ‘Ghoomar’ song that has created a row promotes the folk music of Rajasthan – my native state. To be honest, I have not seen the movie but I have full faith in its director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and his works which are magnificent. I know him very well. He does his work with utmost responsibility,” the Padma Bhushan awardee said. Bhatt said Bhansali is a great artiste and thinker as well, and he believes there is nothing objectionable in the movie. “In fact, the movie shows Rajasthan in good light and promotes its magnificant palaces worldwide,” he said.
“The Rajasthani dresses worn by the women in the beautiful ‘Ghoomar’ song are not only decent but also graceful,” the musician said. He said those against the movie should first watch it and then react.