afaqs! news bureau

Multiplex industry's open letter to government seeks an 'urgent unlock'

Despite the ongoing 'Unlock' steps, multiplexes like PVR, Carnival, Inox, Cinepolis, etc. are yet to get a green light from the government.

The Multiplex Association of India's (MAI) ongoing campaign #UnlockCinemaSaveJobs is an appeal to the Government of India to allow cinema chains to return to business. Multiplexes are among those organised sectors which haven't seen any recovery so far.

On print, the campaign took the shape of an open letter on the jackets of newspapers.

Multiplexes, like most other out-of-home entertainment mediums, were shutdown following the nationwide lockdown imposed in March. While the nation is gradually opening up as a result of the government's series of 'Unlock' initiatives, multiplex companies like PVR, Carnival, Inox, Cinepolis, etc. are yet to get a green light from the government.

In July, the association had also submitted a list of COVID SOPs to the government. The list included precautions like thermal screening, paperless tickets, sparse seating, sanitisation, among others.

PVR had also announced a partnership with hygiene brand Dettol to ensure safety on its premises. PVR venues will be equipped with Dettol hand sanitising stations and sanitiser dispensers, Dettol disinfectant liquid will be used to sanitise common areas and utilities.

As per MAI estimates, the cinema exhibition industry is facing a monthly loss of RS 1,500 crore. The campaign's communication stresses that multiplexes are better positioned to handle crowds, enforce regulated entries/exits and maintain social distancing norms.

"Given the dire economic impact of the epidemic on our sector and livelihoods of people, we sincerely urge the Government of India to allow reopening of cinemas on an urgent basis," reads the final bit of the ad's copy.

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