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Updated: February 11, 2010 12:13 IST

Mumbai theatres under security blanket

PTI
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A police officer patrols outside a movie hall in Mumbai.
PTI A police officer patrols outside a movie hall in Mumbai.

Heavy security arrangements have been made at city cinema theatres ahead of Friday’s release of Shah Rukh Khan starrer My Name Is Khan which is facing the Shiv Sena’s ire.

Over 1,600 Sena activists, including functionaries, have been arrested in the last two days to thwart protests by the Sena, who has been demanding that Mr. Khan apologise for his remarks favouring Pakistani players in IPL-3.

“Elaborate security measures have been adopted to ensure no untoward incident happens (before and after the release of the movie). Nobody would be spared for taking law into their hands,” said Maharashtra Home Minister R.R. Patil.

The theatre owners have been asked to install night vision cameras that would enable police to identify troublemakers in case of any untoward incident. They have also been advised to keep the first three rows vacant and deploy at least two security guards inside the hall so that incidents such as ripping off screens with sharp instruments by troublemakers can be averted.

Notices warning Sena party leaders not to create law and order problems have been issued by the police. Police Commissioner D. Sivanandan has issued guidelines to all the police stations regarding security arrangements.

Constables stationed at halls have been told to frisk ticket-holders and check their bags. However, it is not must for cine-goers to show identity cards.

Each single-screen cinema hall will be manned by a sub-inspector, three constables, two of them women, and five plainclothes policemen. In the wake of the Sena intensifying protests, leaves of the policemen have been cancelled to ensure their full presence.

To further strengthen the security, personnel from State Reserve Police Force and Home Guards will be deployed at the theatres across the metropolis.

Meanwhile, Mr. Khan, along with co-actor Kajol and the film’s director Karan Johar, left for Abu Dhabi on Wednesday to attend a special premiere of the movie.

On Tuesday, Mr. Johar, who is also co-producer of the film, met Mr. Sivanandhan to discuss security issues ahead of the movie’s release.


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