Tamil cinema industry on verge of crisis

7 years ago

The multi-million Rupee Tamil cinema industry seems to be on the verge of a crisis with wage revision turning out to be a flashpoint between unions of producers and workers. Peeved over the "unilateral decision" of the workers' body, Film Employees Federation of South India (FEFSI), on revising the wage structure, the Tamil Film Producers' Council (TFPC) has ruled out working with them.

While a strike paralysing the industry boasting some of the biggest names of Indian cinema, including actors Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan is not in the offing, FEFSI has however decided to take to the streets by organising a fast, sources said.

Sources indicated that not much production activity had taken place last week, with TFPC convening an emergency meeting of its general council to discuss the issue on Monday, even as it held that it could not negotiate with FEFSI due to elections to the body and change of guard.

While wage revision had been happening once in three years for the past few years, it did not happen last year with the expiry of the latest scale in early 2011.

However, FEFSI went ahead and announced a scale, which is now the bone of contention between the two bodies. "Agreement on payscale is usually signed after discussions with both parties and this time FEFSI's unilateral decision was against normal practice," TFPC sources said.

However, a FEFSI office-bearer said the demand to increase pay by 30-50 per cent was the general scale proposed.  PTI

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