Say cheese! Mumbai Paparazzi cheer up as Hrithik Roshan, Rohit Shetty provide financial aid
Paparazzi have a reason to smile as Hrithik Roshan, Rohit Shetty transfer money to their accounts to help them tide over the dry spell.
Whether they step out from the gyms, the airport or their posh Juhu residences, stars are always greeted by the paparazzi, who wait devotedly on the sidelines for that one perfect shot. If the paparazzi culture has grown steadily in India over the years, it has also given birth to a love-hate relationship between the ones in front of the camera and those behind it. Expectedly then, in the face of the current crisis, Bollywood stars have not forgotten their favourite photographers. Hrithik Roshan and filmmaker Rohit Shetty have led the way by offering financial assistance to several entertainment photographers to tide over the current dry spell.
Yogen Shah, who runs an entertainment photo syndicate, employs a team of 10 stringers. He is grateful for the help that the stars have extended in a time of need. "I had paid their salaries for March [but was unsure of the way ahead]. Then, I got calls from Rohit Shetty's production house and Hrithik sir's team, offering help. Hrithik sir asked whether he should give me a lump sum to be distributed among my boys, or send the money directly to their accounts. I told him to do the latter as my team should know that the funds have come from him."
File photo of Varun Dhawan posing for the paparazzi during a promotional event
While like other support functionaries of the entertainment industry, freelance photographers have seen their income dry up due to the lockdown, photographer Viral Bhayani points out that they face another disadvantage. "We are not part of a cine body or association that can help us out in a time of crisis. I work with a team [of about 15 photographers], so the salaries run into lakhs. I was worried about how I would manage their April salaries. Now, other celebrities have also inquired if my team members need funds or ration." Manav Manglani, who supervises a team of over 10 assistant lensmen, adds, "It was a wonderful gesture by Hrithik and Rohit. I have asked my team members to send a part of the amount to their families back home."
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