Now, with the Modi Government starting to take off, it is the turn of the stars to take the Prime Minister up on his promises or at least so it would seem in this case.
During his campaign in Tamil Nadu, Modi had made two very important friends – Thalapathy Vijay and the Superstar Rajinikanth, both of whom were even invited to the swearing in ceremony (though now that didn’t work out so well, huh).
Na Mo’s meeting with Vijay was especially endearing as the actor took time out of his busy schedule to go meet the then Prime Ministerial candidate to show his respect. He later said he was stunned to learn that Modi was not just familiar with his work but was an admirer of it too.
Now Vijay has taken this relationship of mutual respect between them as a platform to get the Prime Minister’s attention on something close to his heart – the service taxes on cinema or rather the scrapping of it. He has written to Modi pleading him to reconsider the Government’s stand on this.
It was imposed by the previous government and has caused much harm to the film industry in India; so much so that it is in a crisis now. The tax was upheld by the Congress Government in spite of repeated pleas from the film fraternity and the Film Chamber of Commerce.
This what Vijay had to say about it in his letter of pleas to the Prime Minister:
Cinema is not only a medium that entertains masses but also generates massive revenue for the Government. But the sad part is that the industry is facing a lot of problems lately and despite the efforts of many, the attempt to revive the industry seems futile. Many theaters are turning into marriage halls and shopping malls… Many leading producers have met with heavy losses and are looking at other possible business opportunities. If this situation persists, I’m afraid the millions of people depending on the industry for their living, will lose all their jobs.
Heartfelt and honest as the letter sounds, will the Prime Minister respond and will the Government make a decision regarding this issue?
We will have to wait and see what happens now on that front.