Kannada govt sets up panel to look into local cinema policy

BANGALORE: Karnataka government has proposed to the agitating Kannada Film Producers Association (KFPA) and Kannada Film Directors Association (KFDA) to set up a panel including nominees from their organisations in order to recommend a comprehensive cinema policy for the State.

Responding to the deputy chief minister's suggestion, KFPA and KFDA have chosen 11 members to be nominated for the proposed panel.

The nominees include Parvathamma Rajkumar, Ramu, Kanakapura Srinivas, K Manju, Ramesh Yadav, Basant Kumar Patil, actors Ravichandra and Raghavendra Rajkumar and directors Joe Simon and S V Rajendrasingh Babu.

Deputy chief minister Siddaramaiah   who announced the decision at the rally organised by KFPA and KFDA yesterday, also promised that the recommendations would be implemented within ten days of the submission of the report.

Meanwhile, KFPA has decided not to allow the release of non-Kannada films (that includes English films) for seven weeks from the date of their first release elsewhere in the country beginning 13 August. The organisation has also demanded a 100-per cent hike in the entertainment tax for non-Kannada films.

Some of the other important demands made by the KFPA and KFDA include:

(1) All Kannada films must be shown in all theaters in Karnataka for at least 12 weeks a year.

(2) Abolition of show tax and turnover tax on exhibition of Kannada Films.

(3) Single window system for permission for filming.

KFPA claims that its decision of not allowing the release of non-Kannada films including English for seven weeks is in compliance with a 1996 agreement between the government and the exhibitors but is yet to be implemented.

Senior Kannada actor Dr Raaj Kumar addressed the rally. Prominent artistes including Vishnuvardhan, Ambarish, Upendra, Darshan, Ramesh, Bharati and Tara were conspicuous by their absence.

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