Ahmedabad: The Deputy Conservator of Forest said that the articles the film unit was using to construct a small hut had also been seized.
Mumbai-based unit shooting for an ad film for Lipton tea was fined Rs3 lakh by state forest department
They came, saw, and was ready to erect a film set according to the script, till law decided to shout ‘pack-up’ even before the cameras started to roll.
Advertisement for a Lipton Tea ad in the Wild Ass Sanctuary of Surendranagar with the support of the local people, ended up in a different story with the film unit put behind bars till by the forest officials till they paid up Rs3 lakh as penalty on Monday. The film unit, belonging to a Mumbai-based Seven Films Limited, was shooting for an advertisement in the sanctuary at the Jasda village of Dhrangandra taluka of Surendranagar district on Sunday.
According to AM Chaudhary, the Deputy Conservator of Forest, the film had a sequence of consuming tea at a highway eatery and the articles they used to construct a small hut had also been seized. “The area, however, is surrounded by salt pan workers, and some of them along with the villagers, too had supported for the shooting,” Chaudyary said.
According to the norms, the commercial shooting is not allowed in the sanctuary. The FIR, under Protection of Wildlife Act, had been filed on Monday against one Sanjay Soni and 100 of his subordinates. “Soni is the local man and had assured local support to the film unit without going through the official procedure,” Chaudhary said.
Talking to DNA, chief wildlife warden and in-charge principal chief conservator of forest, S Goyal, said that, the film unit was trying to erect the film set. “But when we knew about this we immediately took action and also increased vigilance in the entire area to avoid repetition of such violations in the future,” he said.
Range Forest Officer and investigating officer of the case, NA Khavadia confirmed that the unit wanted to shoot an ad, but when the department was intimated from a local source, the department sleuths along with the DFO raided the spot and arrested the unit.