Tamil Nadu Minister for Information and Publicity Kadambur Raju on Monday in a statement informed that there is a possibility that theatres and cinema halls in the state will be reopened on either October 20 or 22. He said the state government has been providing assistance to theatre owners, while adding that the Centre has issued guidelines keeping in mind the safety of thousands of workers working in cinema halls. 

Minister Kadambur Raju stated that the decision to reopen theatres and cinema halls in the state cannot be rushed considering the pandemic situation needs to be taken into context first. He further added that he will be headed to Chennai on October 19 to participate in the meeting between Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palanswami and the members of the state theatre owners association on October 20 and 21. He also said that a decision on the reopening of theatres in the state will be arrived on those dates and we can expect cinema halls to be operational again soon. 

The latest statement from minister Kadambur Raju will no doubt come as a sigh of relief for theatre owners in the state, including the fans, who have been waiting for cinema halls to be reopened. We can expect producers too to arrive at a decision soon in regard to releasing their films in the event of the state government giving the nod for the theatres to reopen. There are already a few international releases lined up, which are first expected to come out, including Christopher Nolan's Tenet. As for the Tamil films, fans are waiting with bated breath on a number of films to hit theatres among which also includes the highly-anticipated 'Thalapathy' Vijay and 'Makkal Selvan' Vijay Sethupathi starrer, Master, which was initially slated for an April 9 release. 

Earlier, the Centre had announced that cinema halls and theatres across the country are permitted to reopen from October 15, with the exception of those in the containment zones. Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar had last week issued the standard operating procedures (SOPs) that are to be followed by theatres and cinema halls around the country in order to safely continue their operations amid the coronavirus pandemic. Mr Javadekar tweeted using the hashtag UnlockWithPrecautions, "Cinema halls shall be allowed to open with 50 per cent capacity only and people will maintain one-seat distance. Alternate seats will be left vacant for social distancing. Wearing masks at all times inside the hall will be important."