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Multiplex bosses support shutdown, say losses not so big

Large parts of India shut down to protest the recent hike in petrol prices. "We were shut till six in the evening. Now, we have started working again. We waited till five in the evening, then we thought we will take a call," Ashish Saxena, COO of Big Cinemas, told IANS.

Last Friday seven Hindi films were released -- "Arjun: The Warrior Prince", "Chutki Bajaa Ke", "Love Recipe", "Love Wrinkle Free", "MLA", "Rakhtbeej" and "Yeh Khula Aasmaan". Most of them were small-budget movies and the estimated loss faced due to the shutdown is approximately around Rs.1,00,000 per theatre.

Pramod Arora CEO of PVR Cinemas told IANS: "We were shut in Mumbai, Gujarat, Aurangabad, Latur and some other centres. So the business has been affected in these areas. But our shows were running in Delhi since morning, so business has not been affected over there. We have not faced too much of loss as there were not really too many movies."

When asked about the losses, Saxena said: "It is very difficult to reveal the figure. I can only give you the rough figures. May be we have faced a loss of about Rs.1,00,000 per cinema. Manoj Desai, executive director of G7 multiplex and Maratha Mandir, quoted the same figure.

"Of course, we had to face loss due to the bandh, but I can't reveal the exact figures but approximately I would say we lost around Rs.1,00,000 per cinema," he said. Though the business has been affected there are no plans to compensate the loss as the protest was for a cause. "We were part of this protest, so there are no plans of compensation," said Desai. Arora said he is not sure about the compensation part and added: "We basically support this cause." 

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