Sunday, Dec 07, 2003
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By K. Manikandan
Shooting for a Tamil film was in progress at the bridge and a section of it was closed for traffic. Vehicles from Kamarajar Salai proceeding towards Secretariat were diverted through the other narrow bridge meant for vehicles towards Santhome.
As vehicles from Santhome had to slow down due to the diversion, it resulted in traffic congestion at the intersection of Kamarajar Salai and Swami Sivananda Salai.
Some of the road-users were taken by surprise and urged the authorities to at least inform them in advance, through the media, of such changes.
Personnel attached to the Anna Square police station, who granted permission for the shooting, said the arrangement today facilitated movement of vehicles along the bridge.
For another movie shoot three weeks ago, both sides of the bridge remained closed for some time and motorists had to take a longer detour to Parry's Corner. They were irked at the `unnecessary inconvenience' to which they were being subjected. One of them wondered if the Information and Public Relations department, which collects money for shooting in the city, had any norms to regulate the use of public space by film companies during peak hours.
Permission was granted rarely during daytime, according to traffic police. They said instances of traffic disruption on city's arterial roads due to film shooting had been brought down drastically over the past couple of years.
G.U.G. Sastry, Joint Commissioner of Police (Traffic), said shooting was allowed only during weekends and that too at night when traffic flow was minimum.
Shooting was allowed during daytime only if the crew proved that the scene needed to be shot in broad daylight, he added. On such occasions, law and order and traffic policemen would be on duty near the shooting spot to ensure that motorists were not inconvenienced.
On Saturday, the shooting was for the film Ayutha Ezhuthu, starring Madhavan and Surya and directed by Maniratnam. Policemen had a tough time managing curious onlookers, mostly youth, who gathered near the bridge to get a closer look at the stars. An enthusiastic boy, who darted across the Sivananda Salai to watch the spectacle, was almost hit by a car.
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