Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh’s “MSG 2: The Messenger”, the sequel to “MSG”, today hit theatres in over 2000 screens across the country amid fanfare.
“MSG 2” too features Ram Rahim in the lead role.
“Exhibitors were given less number of shows in view of another release ‘Katti Batti’, but seeing the response from the public the number of shows are likely to increase on week end,” Dera spokesman Aditya Insan told PTI.
“The response across India is fantastic,” he claimed, adding that the Tamil and Telgu version will be released next week.
The film’s overseas release is slated for next week in English. The Dera claims that its follower base is close to four crore.
Followers of the sect were seen reaching cinemas attired in T-shirts donning photograph of the Dera head.
At few places in Haryana, including Sirsa, where the headquarters of the sect is located, the enthusiasm was more among the followers, who reached multiplexes in huge numbers while dancing to the beats of drums.
In Punjab, the reports are “lukewarm” as exhibitors are afraid to screen the film in view of government pressure, Insan claimed.
“Punjab government is suppressing the fundamental rights of people by not allowing the film to be released by putting pressure,” he claimed.
Last year, the Punjab government had imposed a ban on “MSG” even though the film did a good business in other parts of the country, he said.
“Exhibitors are ready to show the film in multiplexes in Punjab, but are afraid of government,” he claimed, referring to few districts of Punjab, including Bathinda and Mansa where the film is not released in cinemas.
Notably, the Punjab government has not imposed a ban on the film unlike last time when “MSG” was banned in the state.
Meanwhile, reports claimed that owners of cinema theatres and multiplexes across Punjab were asked not to show the film as they have received “threats” from some radical organisations.