A day ahead of the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s controversial film ‘Padmaavat’, Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow on Wednesday witnessed protests near malls and theatres from activists claiming to be associated with a Rajput fringe group.

A number of activists of the Karni Sena staged protests outside two malls in Gomti Nagar area. The police, however, managed to control the situation and detained a few activists.

“The security around cinema halls have been increased. We will not let anyone take law in his hand,” a senior police official said.

The police used mild force to disperse protesters gathered outside Gomti Nagar police station after a few activists were detained.

The film, scheduled to release¬†on Thursday, has been facing protests by Karni Sena and other fringe groups over allegations that it distorts history. The film’s makers have denied the allegation.

In UP, an alert has been sounded and all the district police chiefs have been asked to remain vigilant, the police officer said.

Forces are on standby to maintain law and order, he added.

The film, starring Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh, is based on the saga of the 13th century battle between Maharaja Ratan Singh of Mewar and Sultan Alauddin Khilji of Delhi.