New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal reacting on the brutal attack on school bus by the people protesting against screening of "Padmaavat" said that the forces "that killed Muslims and burnt Dalits are now coming after our children."
Claiming that he "couldn't sleep all night" on learning of the attack on the school bus in Gurgaon, Kejriwal said that it was a "matter of shame" for the nation that school children were attacked just a few kilometres from the national capital before Republic Day celebrations.
"I appeal to everyone. We cannot afford to remain silent anymore. They killed Muslims, burnt Dalits alive, thrashed them. Today, they have started pelting our children with stones, have started intruding into our homes. Don't remain silent now, speak up," Kejriwal said in a speech during an event to mark Republic Day tomorrow.
"It is the land of Rama, Krishna, Gautam Budhha, Mahavira, Guru Nanak, Kabir and Meera, followers of Prophet Mohammad and Jesus Christ.
"I want to ask whether the people who hurled stones were Hindus, Muslims or Christians. Which religion preaches violence against children?" Kejriwal said.
"Padmaavat" released today amid violent protests by groups like Karni Sena who insist that the film hurts Rajput pride and twists the story of 14th-century Queen Padmini and Sultan Alauddin Khilji, who launched an invasion to capture her.
Historians have however claimed that the very existence of "Queen Padmini" is doubtful and that "Padmaavati" character is fictitious.
People protesting against the release of "Padmaavat" the film featuring Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in the lead roles, on Wednedsay attacked the school bus carrying little students of GD Goenka World School, Gurgaon.
The protesters were blocking the road and had burnt a state-run bus just seconds before they attacked the school bus.
Violent protests against the screening of "Padmaavat" was also reported from Gujarat, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
Besides Delhi-Jaipur highway, protesters also gathered on the Delhi-Ajmer highway and burnt tyres this morning. Sporadic violence was also reported from Rajasthan's Sikar, where a bus was stoned.
More than 150 four-wheelers and two-wheelers were damaged as mobs of around 2000 went on the rampage after 08:00 pm, targeting three malls with multiplexes and a standalone theatre complex in the western part of Ahmedabad.
Three city malls – Acropolis, Ahmedabad One, Himalaya Mall – and Cinemex, the standalone theatre complex, came under attack despite theatre owners in the city declaring they would not screen Padmaavat.
Mobs went on rampage in Muzaffarnagar. In Kanpur, agitated members of a fringe group barged into a mall demanding a complete ban on the film. They tore film posters, damaged property and manhandled the mall staff, the police said.
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