Filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma aka RGV lashed out at Andhra Pradesh government over the capping of price for film tickets in theatres. In a series of tweets, Varma criticised the government for fixing the movie ticket prices in the state. This comes a day after Varma met Andhra Pradesh Cinematography Minister Perni Nani, on January 10, to discuss the issues faced by the Telugu film industry. They met after the war of words on Twitter where the minister was justifying the government’s decision and the director was opposing it.
The discussion during the meeting between RGV and Minister Perni Nani remained inconclusive as the Minister said that the government was acting solely based on the provisions of the Cinematograph Act. Now, RGV has launched a fresh attack on the government over the ticket price issue.
RGV tweeted that there is a huge difference between the price of movie tickets in neighbouring Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. He said it is causing financial losses to producers in Tollywood.
In a sarcastic tweet, RGV wrote, “Maharashtra state allowing @ssrajamouli’s RRR ticket price to sell at Rs 2200/- and his home state AP not even allowing to sell at Rs 200/- raises an existential question “WHO KILLED KATTAPPA?”
Maharashtra state allowing @ssrajamouli ‘s RRR ticket price to sell at Rs 2200/- and his home state AP not even allowing to sell at Rs 200/- raises an existential question “WHO KILLED KATTAPPA? “— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) January 11, 2022
In another state tickets being sold for even Rs 2200 and in AP state if even Rs 200 isn’t allowed , isn’t it in direct violation of article 14 which prohibits discrimination?— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) January 11, 2022
What possible harm can happen if there’s any number of shows put in a day or a night,when Maharashtra already was allowing shows to run 24/7 before the covid crisis came ?— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) January 11, 2022
In another tweet, he asked whether the Andhra Pradesh government is putting a restriction on the sale price of any other privately manufactured product apart from films.
Is the AP government putting a restriction on the sale price of any other privately manufactured product apart from films ? If so we would like to know the products names and their reasons for doing so— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) January 11, 2022
He suggested that government should leave the pricing, number of shows and timings of shows to the film industry only and focus on enforcing safety regulations and tax collection.
My final submission on this subject is for Government to leave the pricing ,no.of shows and timings of shows to the film industry and just concentrate both its energy and resources only on enforcing safety regulations and transaction transparency for it to collect its due taxes— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) January 11, 2022
Earlier actors Nani, Mohan Babu, Pawan Kalyan, Nagarjuna and Chiranjeevi among others have also expressed their concerns on the issue.
Issuing an order on April 8, 2021, the Andhra Pradesh government had fixed the rates for film tickets in theatres. This angered theatre owners and they moved Andhra Pradesh High Court. On the order of the court, the state government on December 28, 2021, set up a committee comprising all stakeholders to decide on the prices. The first meeting of the committee is yet to be held.