SRINAGAR: Bollywood has drawn big plans to sustain its age-old relationship with Kashmir. At least three crews are scheduled to start shooting in Kashmir, early spring, newspaper reports said.
“Filmmaker Vidhu Vinod Chopra plans to shoot his upcoming film based on the plight of the Kashmiri Pandit community, in the state,” Hindustan Times reported. “Bollywood playback singer Nakash Aziz and actor Shiv Pandit will be shooting for a love track at Gulmarg, a popular tourist destination. Actor Ranjha Vikram Singh, too, has been shooting for a film at the hill station, Sonamarg.”
The report said that the directors who have extensively shot in Kashmir say the place is fascinating and does not have any problems for the visiting crews.
“It is a peaceful place,” actor Reem Shaikh, who will essay the role of Malala in Gul Makai, was quoted saying. “There is no violence here. If you are planning a holiday, you must visit Kashmir.”
Most of the Gul Makai will be shot in Kashmir. It is a biopic on the struggle of Pakistani student activist Malala Yousufzi who was given Nobel Prize.
“We have shot widely in Kashmir, and I haven’t witnessed anything negative, or any sense of stress,” Sidharth Malhotra, who shot for Aiyaary in 2017, was quoted saying. “They are very resilient there. I am very impressed with the armed forces. They understand that they need to send a positive message to the people by allowing a film to be shot there.”
Filmmaker Kabir Khan shot his Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Phantom in 2015 in Kashmir. “It was a wonderful experience shooting. We received an overwhelming support from locals, the tourism industry, security forces, and hotel people,” Khan was quoted saying by the newspaper. “People were very cooperative. They didn’t create any disruption during the shoot. We were given the permission to shoot at all those locations where we wanted to. In the future, if my script demands me to shoot there, I will go there without any hesitation.”
Imran Khan shot his Sargoshiyan in Kashmir in 2017. “Kashmir is really a beautiful place to shoot,” Khan was quoted saying. “The place has always welcomed Bollywood to shoot. I shot in 2016 and enjoyed it. The people, the tourism department were very helpful and cooperative, and made the shoot an easy job.”
Hindustan Times reported that in last few years a number of films were shot in Kashmir. These include Neeraj Pandey’s Aiyaary, Meghna Gulzar’s Raazi, Divya Duttastarrer Gul Makai and Sajid Ali’s Laila Majnu.