Bollywood Plots Path to Recovery as Industry Helps India’s Vaccination Efforts


Leading Indian studio Yash Raj Films’ Yash Chopra Foundation has launched a vaccination drive for Bollywood industry personnel.

YRF chair and MD Aditya Chopra has made available the sprawling premises of its Mumbai studio for the drive, which began Tuesday. The first phase is expected to inoculate 4,000 workers with the aim being to vaccinate all 30,000 members of the Federation of Western India Cine Employees. YRF has already vaccinated its own employees.

The Producers Guild of India launched a similar campaign at Mumbai’s Mehboob Studios last week. PVR, India’s leading cinema chain, is carrying out a drive to inoculate 10,000 employees and their dependents across 70 cities in India.

The concerted efforts are happening as productions are now allowed to resume in Mumbai, where Bollywood is headquartered. On June 6, Uddhav Thackeray, chief minister of Maharashtra, the western Indian state of which Mumbai is the capital, held a virtual meeting with industry stakeholders. As the number of COVID-19 cases in the state and in India in general are now in decline, compared to the horror scenario of April and May, shoots were permitted to restart from June 7, albeit in bubbles and only until 5pm. However, major productions are yet to restart.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation in a televised address on Monday and promised free vaccines for all aged 18 and above from June 21. He also said that vaccine supplies would increase significantly in the coming days.

On Tuesday, India officially reported 86,498 new coronavirus cases, the lowest in two months, and some 1.3 million active cases, according to government figures. There have been a total of 351,000 deaths, with 2,123 of those in the last 24 hours. The official numbers for infections and deaths are thought to be very significant underestimates.

Maharashtra has 11,202 active cases, with 340 deaths in the last 24 hours. The country has administered 240 million vaccine doses so far to its population of 1.3 billion. The stated aim is to get every adult vaccinated by the end of 2021.

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