Manoj Joshi, senior vice president of the Cine and Television Artistes’ Association (CINTAA), met Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari recently to discuss about the restriction on actors of 65-plus years from participating in shootings during the present times due to the fear of them contracting coronavirus. The Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), approved by the Maharashtra government, do not permit actors of 65 years and more to shoot for films or TV serials because of their vulnerability to the coronavirus. Joshi explained the anomaly involved in such a restriction as films and TV serials, which have actors who are 65 or more years of age, cannot progress without such actors if they have already participated in the shooting prior to the lockdown. The governor assured Manoj Joshi that he would look into the matter and change the rule, if necessary.
Actually, the meeting with the governor was for another purpose too, as revealed by the actor. Manoj Joshi was keen on congratulating the governor for winning a competition on Mahatma Gandhi, organised by the Indian postal department. Koshiyari, who has witnessed the freedom struggle of India, participated in the essay competition as a common man — and also won it. The governor then added three times the amount of the prize money and gifted the same to the employees of the postal department for their protection against COVID-19. Said Manoj Joshi, “I went to his house to congratulate him for winning the competition and on his amazing gesture as well as to honour him with a shawl. The actor was accompanied by state BJP secretary and vice chairman of the Maharashra Film, Stage & Cultural Development Corporation Ltd. (MFSCDCL, also known as Film City), Amarjeet Mishra. The latter gifted the governor an idol of Vithoba and Rukmini.