Forest officials stop film shooting

A Correspondent

Nedumbassery: Forest officials on Saturday ordered filmmaker Mani Ratnam to stop filming his multi-lingual movie in the forests of Malayattoor near here after they found violations of the agreement he had entered into with the Forest Department.

The shooting of the movie Ravana, in which Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai play the lead roles, at Mahaganithottam in the Malayatoor forest range, a prime eco-tourism destination, was stopped after the officials found illegal construction of temporary huts in the prohibited areas.

The officials said they asked the crew to stop filming on the instruction of Principal Chief Forest Conservator T.M. Manoharan who visited the site on Friday.

However, Mani Ratnam was not present at the site when the forest officials arrived.

As against the agreement, the film crew erected three makeshift tents in the prohibited areas for storing their equipment.

Further, the frequent entry of vehicles of the crew to the area without permission resulted in the destruction of rare plants.

The officials confirmed that permission for 20 days of shooting within a two-month period was granted and this was the fifth day as per the terms.

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