CHANDIGARH/KOLKATA: Haryana BJP leader Suraj Pal Amu on Saturday threatened West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee that she would meet the same fate as "Surpanakha", a demoness from the epic Ramayana whose nose was cut off by Lakshman, a day after she asserted her state was ready to welcome Sanjay Leela Bhansali's controversial film "Padmavati" and its crew.
"I have come to know that Mamata Banerjee is saying Sanjay Leela Bhansali, come to Kolkata. We will welcome you. I say, this is the village of Ramchandra Ji's brother Lakshmanji. And what Laxmanji did to Surpanakha, I don't have to tell you," he said, making a gesture of cutting one's nose.
Further egging on the crowd, Amu, also a member of the Akhil Bharatiya Kshatriya Mahasabha, repeated: "Do I need to say? What Lakshman had done, will you do or not?"
In Valmiki's Ramayana, Surpanakha - the sister of Ravana - had proposed to both Rama and Lakshman, but was spurned by both. In retaliation, she tried to attack Ram's wife Sita, but Lakshman rushed to protect his sister-in-law, and cut off Surpanakha's nose.
Amid the raging controversy over the period drama, Banerjee on Friday had promised to make special arrangements for the screening of "Padmavati" in her state.
"Yes, we would welcome them. They are welcome here if they can't do it in other state. We can make special arrangements. Bengal will be very happy," she said, in response to a query whether her state would welcome the film's crew for a premiere here at a time when a number of states have banned the movie.
An angry Trinamool Congress demanded an apology from Amu.
"The language, and the content of his remarks cannot be condoned or uttered. Either he should apologise, or else the people of the state would keep a watch on him, and launch proper protests," Trinamool Secretary General Partha Chatterjee said.
Bhansali's attempt to bring alive the story of Rajput queen Rani Padmavati on the silver screen with his movie "Padmavati" hasn't gone down well with Hindu groups backed by the BJP. It features Deepika as Rani Padmavati, Shahid Kapoor as her husband and warrior king and Ranveer Singh essays Delhi Sultanate ruler Alauddin Khilji.
Bhansali faced many hiccups while shooting the film, but the protests escalated as the film neared its release date. There are conjectures that it "distorts history" regarding the Rajput queen, though he has denied it repeatedly.