Chandigarh looks forward to Bollywood dreams

July 26th, 2011 - 12:26 pm ICT by IANS  

Akshay Kumar Chandigarh, July 26 (IANS) Nearly 30 movies have been shot in and around Chandigarh in recent years. So the city and its surrounding states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir have decided to give a push to their Bollywood connection by attracting more shooting units as well as fans.

With big hits like “Singh is Kinng”, “Jab We Met”, “Namaste London”, “Fashion”, “Veer Zaara”, “Apne” and many others being shot in Chandigarh and surrounding areas, particularly in Punjab, the tourism authorities are getting their act together to offer locales for greater Bollywood involvement.

To start with, these states are organising the North India Cinematic Tourism conclave here Wednesday. The conclave will be inaugurated by union Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahai.

“The Chandigarh Administration is focusing in a big way on promoting the city and its adjoining areas for cinematic tourism. Leading producers, directors, Bollywood stars, TV artists and theatre personalities will all converge in Chandigarh due to good connectivity with Mumbai and Delhi,” Arvind Malhotra, general manager-tourism with Chandigarh industrial and tourism corporation (CITCO), told IANS.

“Chandigarh already has a Bollywood facilitation centre to ensure that film units coming to shoot in the city and surrounding areas don’t face any difficulty and get all permission through a single window facility,” Malhotra said.

In recent months, several leading stars from Bollywood like Akshay Kumar, Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif, Kareena Kapoor, Sonakshi Sinha, Imran Khan and several others have stayed in Chandigarh while shooting for their films in and around the city.

“We keep getting a lot of top actors and directors who come for shooting in the region and stay with us,” Anil Malhotra, general manager of the Taj Hotel here, told IANS.

During the conclave, Chandigarh, Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh will jointly promote cinematic tourism packages.

“The administrations of the respective states and Chandigarh will proactively look into all concerned affairs to ease the information flow and provide logistical support to the crew,” a senior tourism official said here.

“Emphasis would be laid on streamlining the process to make this region a hub for the media, cinematic and television entertainment industry.”

Designed by French architect Le Corbusier and his team in the 1950s and 60s, Chandigarh has a population of nearly 10 lakh. Its attractions include the manmade Sukhna Lake, the Rock Garden, nearly two dozen gardens and several green belts and a well laid out road network.

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