From Padmavati to Padmavat: Questioning the nuances of creative liberty

You imagine a plot. Your cerebrum is storming with hundreds of ideas, ideas so creative that the world will flatter you for time immemorial, thoughts, so well elucidated that perfectionism becomes a reality!

You are elated with joy and your guts find an indefectible way to express it.

You are about to present them and suddenly..


They all are slapped with a simple verdict, “we know you and what you want to express, but your ideas can hurt our sentiments, and can be seen as immoral and and therefore we will not let you express it”.

You know you are right yet, all you can do is wait and watch.

Wouldn’t that be disheartening? In fact, I would say, frustrating, depressing and demoralising?

As you are picturing this in your mind, let me lead you down my memory lane, recollecting  a quote about the denizens of our dear country, quoted by an extremely admired as well as idealised entrepreneur and author, Dr. Narayana Murthy. “We indians are very thin skinned and find insult in even the slightest comment or action.” These words are not just some random combination of characters, but instead, are a deck of cards that define us so easily yet completely. This can be easily illustrated by a recent controversial incident.

“Padmavati becomes Padmavat”!

Officially scheduled to release on 1st December 2017, it was finally released on 24th January 2018.


Looking into this controversy, I got to know that some of the most igneous personalities from Bollywood were threatened to be beheaded, as they made a film seeking creative liberty. Unfortunately, that was tagged as malicious by a Rajput caste organization “Karni Sena”.

Getting into the roots of this situation it was found that they were offended by a dream sequence in the film between Padmavati and Alauddin khilji , which didn’t even exist. According to them, it apparently questioned the character of Padmavati as well as distorted the glorious history of Rajputs. Moreover, the icing on the cake was that this all happened without anyone having even watched the film even once.

Much later, when the film released, after suffering a huge loss, with the permission of the supreme justice of India as well as the censor board of India. Looking at the situation, this organization turned to physical violence, showcasing a delightful presentation of irrationality, cruelty and illiteracy.

Is this justified? Should this be our attitude towards creative freedom? Is this the way we choose to express our views?

Since the moment we have enhanced our taste in the field of art  whether it’s a mainstream movie or a theatrical film, our artists have also revolutionized their work. They have changed the whole Indian cinema in a more meaningful way.

Presently each film has an extremely different outlook in terms of music, story, direction and cinematography. Each piece holds a strong social message trying to stand out and transmute our country in a commendable manner. While we as a viewer, has the utmost right to express our thoughts and views on that creative piece of art whether its negative or positive, doesn’t matter.

What matters is the way of presenting it. A negative thought can do wonders when presented in a positive spirit. The person presenting it should be rightly informed. When you condemn something you should have a strong argument to justify that comment. But people of our country have no consideration towards it. they blindly follow and do not even question themselves.

I think this is one of the darker aspects of our country. we need to learn a more professional approach towards creative liberties.

A major cause behind this, is a large mass of agitated and unemployed youth who find it exciting to protest, voice their opinions. However, what they don’t know are the consequences.

Taking up the prime time of every news channels, every day for almost two months, doing all the nonsensical things that they can do, speaking rubbish about every related person of that film, they not only lost their importance, but also took those precious hours of news channels which could have been used to deliver something much important to us.

History is history, neither films nor an individual will be ever able to distort it. No one can ever change what happened and what is stated in the books.

But, interpretation of that historical facts could be different for different individuals.

I think this is our basic right and rights cannot be denied. Our constitution has bestowed each of us with a pack of rights and we are well aware of that. However, there is something more that our constitution has stated for us- “FUNDAMENTAL DUTIES.”

Have we ever bothered about it?

If even 10% of the attention that the long-gone Padmavati received could have been given to the living women and girls, half of the crimes associated with women would have been eradicated. We would have seen a new face of our country.

We are modernizing, developing and getting aware to facts to even a few decimals every day. But we still have miles to cover, heaps to do. So, I suggest that we should reshape our mindset, analyse ourselves and help in making our country a better place to live in rather than getting influenced by a rumour as

“History is present to be referred,

while future is waiting to be adored.

A new face of humanity is praying not to be deferred,

But we are still captured!

All we need to do is to think,

To judge whether we are standing on the kink,

As statements can be made in a blink,

But mending them,

Can make you shrink!”

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