Permission granted for shooting films close to water bodies and the resultant pollution on one side and the disturbance caused to wildlife is increasingly becoming cause for concern along the Western Ghats.

Recently, permission given to a film production unit near the Aliyar reservoir led to widespread protest.

The film production unit had established sets close to the water body and the chemicals used in the set and its colouring resulted in the changing of the colour of the water in the reservoir.

In addition, the unit had hired 35 goats from the local population for using them in the making of the movie.

As the unit failed to feed the goats for hours together, some of them are said to have fainted.

When contacted, PWD officials clarified that permission was given for shooting the film for six days by the authorities in Chennai.

As the shooting began, the authorities had cautioned the film making unit officials to refrain from polluting the water and from littering the area. However, the film shooting was called off in one day on Tuesday.

Nature enthusiasts pointed out that permitting film shooting in a reservoir close to the reserve forest boundary should not be encouraged.

The wild animals from the forest used to frequent the reservoir for their drinking water needs.

Human movement, interference, loud music, littering and use of powerful lights would only disturb the wildlife in the nearby habitat.

Only recently, a similar problem occurred because of the permission granted for film shooting close to the Thirurmurthy reservoir near Udumalpet.

The film unit had literally occupied the space close to the water spread area.

Cooking in the open for the production unit, resultant littering, use of loud music, powerful lights was objected to by the local population and nature enthusiasts.

At first, people keep quiet on having a chance to see a film shooting and seeing their favourite starts at close range, but as the shooting processes, even the public begin to object.

District Collector P. Umanath recently served notice and ordered removal of settings erected at the Nandangarai check dam near Thondamuthur.

Even in this case, the chemicals used for colouring the settings resulted in the water in the check dam getting polluted.

The Collector also asked the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board to assess the extent of pollution.

The Nandangarai check dam is close to the foot hills of Western Ghats and wild animals come there to drink water. Film shooting involved preparation and serving of food, resultant littering, use of blaring music and powerful lights and use of all these close to wildlife habitat are not advisable for the peaceful existence of wildlife.

President of OSAI, a nature conservation organisation, K. Kalidas said that there various factors had to considered before granting permission for film shooting.

Another incident was a film shooting at Anubhavi Subramaniar Temple at Thadagam at the foothills of Western Ghats, a very crucial elephant corridor.

Hindu outfit activists said that inappropriate dances filmed near a temple would hurt the sentiments of devotees.