AP Film Ticket Pricing Row: Government Allows Reopening of Closed Theatres

Telugu film director and producer R Narayana Murthy along with film exhibitors.

The government’s decision comes after meeting between film exhibitors and Cinematography Minister Perni Venkataramaiah.

Telugu film director and producer R Narayana Murthy along with film exhibitors, on December 30, met Cinematography Minister Perni Vekataramaiah to discuss the issue being faced by theatre owners across Andhra Pradesh. In the meeting, the representatives from the film fraternity urged the minister to resolve the issues around ticket pricing at the earliest.

Responding positively to the request, minister Nani announced that 83 theatres in 9 districts seized across the state will be allowed to re-open. The government, which has so far agreed to open cinema halls, has given them a deadline to renew their licences and other certificates within four weeks. The film halls can now be opened but only after paying the fines.

After the meeting, the minister instructed the district authorities to provide relaxation and further asked the theatre owners to put the application to re-open their theatre before the Joint Collectors.

The Joint Collectors, police and revenue officials had earlier conducted an inspection in theatres across the state, wherein it was revealed that 103 theatres were functioning without renewing their licences. The cinema halls were also found to be selling tickets at exorbitant prices and flouting other norms. A few other theatres were closed earlier due to a lack of licences. However, now the government has decided to give another chance to theatre owners.

The minister in the meeting with the distributors had discussed all the pending issues with the movie theatres. The minister said that appropriate decisions will be taken based on the recommendations of the committee set up by the government on the issue of movie tickets.

However, it is known that some theatre owners have voluntarily closed down their theatres as it was not profitable to sell tickets at the low prices fixed by the government.

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