The entertainment industry will observe stringent Covid-19 SOPs while filming movies and shows amid the state”s partial lockdown beginning Monday. In fact, industry representatives will monitor film shoots countrywide, enforce pandemic protocol on production houses and punish offenders. Sunday afternoon, CM Uddhav Thackeray called a virtual meeting with film and TV producers and expressed concern over the Covid spread. He appealed to them to cooperate with the state’s strictures.

Minutes after the partial lockdown was announced later that evening, filmmaker Ashoke Pandit, chief advisor of FWICE, said, “A virtual meeting of film associations will be held Monday to devise strict SOPs for all shoots, not only in Mumbai but across the country. We will send the rules and regulations to all production houses who are shooting outside also, because they will ultimately come back here, and we do not want them to be carriers of the disease. We will levy heavy fines for violation. Strict action will be taken against production houses that fail to enforce masks and sanitisation.”

Pandit said the heads of various film bodies had urged the CM not to go in for a lockdown because the industry will not be able to take care of its daily wage workers and technicians as the financial situation of the Industry is quite bad. He said, “We assured him of taking strict precautions on the sets and post production studios. Now it is our responsibility to ensure that everybody follows the rules.”

Amit Behl, senior joint secretary of CINTAA, said the industry would revert to the old Covid-19 SOPs that were instituted in August-September 2020. “We will have masks, sanitisers, paramedics on set, and also devise a social media awareness drive about prevention and vaccination,” he said.

Among those who attended Sunday’s meeting were Mahesh Bhatt, Ashoke Pandit, Ashok Dubey, Amit Behl, Sushma Shiromanee, JD Majithia, NP Singh of Sony and Amol Kolhe.


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By vinayak