Mysuru: The State Government is making all efforts to ease the distress of farmers reeling under drought. One of them is to introduce tender coconuts in multiplexes and cinema theatres across the State.
Chikkamagaluru MLC M.K. Pranesh had suggested Horticulture Minister S.S. Mallikarjun to ban the sale of all kinds of soft drinks in multiplexes and cinema theatres all over the State in the interest of farmers.
Following this, the Minister had directed the State Horticulture Commissioner to write to the Deputy Commissioners to stop sale of soft drinks and instead sell tender coconuts in cinemas.
In turn, Mysuru Deputy Commissioner D. Randeep has written to the President of the Mysuru City Film Exhibitors Association to stop the sale of soft drinks like Coke and Pepsi and instead sell tender coconuts.
Secretary of the Mysuru City Film Exhibitors Association M.R. Rajaram speaking to Star of Mysore said, “We have still not officially received the notice. We will meet the DC and try to explain to him the kinds of problems we will be facing if the ban is imposed on the cool drinks and instead force to sell tender coconut drink.”
Asked for his reaction, since the order is being imposed in the interest of the farmers, he said, “We are ready to do it in the interest of the farmers. However, we cannot force the audience to drink only coconut juice. Moreover, it is not available in air-tight packs easily,” and added, “there are lot of practical issues as we have to maintain the theatres hygienically and think about the health of the audience.”
It is also a problem to sell fresh tender coconuts in the theatres, as we have to think of disposing off the shells, he said.
DRC Managing Partner Vaishali Hanumanth said, “We have stopped the sale of soft drinks from this morning itself by shutting down the coke machines as soon as I saw the order. It is very difficult to do business. There is already a cap on tickets and the labour costs have gone up by 38 percent. We have been hemmed in all sides, by the government.”
Moreover, it is very strange that soft drinks can be sold in the food courts right across the multiplex theatre, but not in the theatre premises itself. Also, the audience do not like the taste of coconut juice in the pack. How do we sell fresh tender coconut, which involves the use of a machete to slice it? she wondered.