Responding to a public interest litigation (PIL) filed with the Bombay High Court on April 6, on the inflated cost of food and beverages (F&B) inside multiplexes, the Maharashtra government had recently assured the court that it would setup a committee and frame a policy to look into the issue within 6 weeks. Mumbai resident Jainendra Baxi had filed the PIL and the matter was heard by a division bench comprising justices SM Kemkar and MS Karnik. Several weeks have passed after that, far more than six, and there's no respite yet from the exorbitant cost of Popcorn and Pepsi. What is the government doing? Where is the policy?
And now, look at the cheek! Multiplexes have INCREASED the rate of Popcorn and Pepsi. Yes, and you know it because you go to multiplexes and see movies, the truth is you who is reading this, have given it a blind eye- kya karen, kisko bolen, chalta hai I can afford it. This 'chalta hai' attitude is the cancer of our society that is killing us and sending us only downhill by the day.
A visit to a PVR (branch name withheld) recently revealed that the ordinary Popcorn has been hiked to 280 and the watery Pepsi to 260. The man on the refreshment counter told me, "Aisa hi hai. Hamare ko upar se order aaya, Delhi head office se, ki rate badha doh. These rates fall in certain shows and on certain days but again shoot up, depending on how big the movie is. So, we hiked it when Thugs of Hindostan released at least but when we were sure that it was failing to get the crowds in, we lowered the rate back to what we were doing before Thugs of Hindostan. We did a similar thing with 2.0 but again it sort of backfired. But you never know, agar picture chal gayi toh... " and he trailed off.
So, basically, it is 'suck the patrons dry'! I refuse to say 'milk it'.
And all that jazz that we can carry food from outside into the theatres is hogwash. Most multiplexes check you and ensure that if you eat in their premises, it's only from their counters- and worse still, the popcorn and Pepsi quality has deteriorated. The popcorn is distinctly soggy, less cheese, less caramel- and the Fountain Pepsi has always been watery.
We know that the plex owners have a HUGE CUT in whatever is sold to us.
Is the multiplex lobby so strong? What a shame!