As a society, we often fail to distinguish between fact and myth. And the row around Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati and the alleged misrepresentation of the apparently fictional Rajput queen Padmini in it, is a great example of the same.
It is meaningless to argue whether Padmini existed or not. It is equally pointless to argue if her representation in the film (which none have seen) is inaccurate or offensive. She is a well-regarded icon for some and a mere myth for others. It is, however, important to consider what the objections to Padmini’s portrayal have to do with privilege, power and politics of a certain kind.