Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu, along with information & public relations minister Bamang Felix and advisor Laisam Simai on March 11 flagged off five ‘mobile digital movie theaters’ in Itanagar.
The mobile digital movie theaters are ready-to-assemble and easy-to-dismantle ‘theatres’ housed in mobile trucks. These theatres are air-conditioned, fire-proof and weather-proof, and can seat as many as 150 people. A 34-feet LCD screen is mounted horizontally onto the side of the truck, which opens into a tent made of inflatable acoustic panels.
According to Sushil Chaudhary, CEO of Picture Time that runs the theatres, the whole set-up takes a team of four-five people about 2.5 hours to raise.
“Why should entertainment be confined to towns and cities? Now we will take entertainment, information and education to the doorstep of our villagers,” Khandu said after the flag off.
He further said that local film producers of Arunachal Pradesh can benefit from these theatres as the state doesn’t have much to write about cinema halls and multiplexes.
He informed that the project was conceived two years ago and budget provisions were kept for procurement of the mobile theatres and training of personnel to run them.
“Our main focus is to empower our rural citizens through educating them digitally besides providing some entertainment,” he said.
The mobile theatres are equipped with V-SATS that offer internet connectivity anywhere.
Khandu said special films will be screened educating people on the state as well as central government’s programs and policies that will guide them to avail benefits from welfare schemes.
“These mobile theatres will connect the rural populace with the government,” he claimed.
Khandu said as a pilot project, five mobile digital movie theatres have been procured by the department of IPR. These will be dispatched to five different districts of Arunachal Pradesh.
“After about a year, we will study the feedbacks received and plan accordingly whether to procure more or not,” he informed.
To start with, the five districts to have the first mobile theatres are Lower Subansiri, Kurung Kumey, Namsai, East Siang and Tawang.
For the first three months these will be run by Picture Times. Meanwhile, local people will be trained, who will take over the theatres when the time comes.
These theatres will also be available for use by other departments like health, education, agriculture, horticulture, etc for their respective IEC campaigns in return of a minimal payment. The IPR department is in process of finalizing a guideline for this.