Coronavirus: Bollywood ups its safety game

Mumbai, Mar 4 (PTI) On the set and off it too, Bollywood is taking precautions in view of the increasing number of coronavirus cases with some filmmakers saying they are being careful while choosing outdoor shooting locations and others upping hygiene levels by making sure their crew is equipped with masks and sanitisers.

India has so far reported 28 positive cases of coronavirus, which includes 16 Italian tourists, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Wednesday. All international passengers will henceforth be screened at airports for the disease.

Filmmaker Anees Bazmee, who is shooting for 'Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2' in Lucknow and will move to Mumbai next, said the team is choosing its outdoor locales with extreme care.

'We are surely keeping the coronavirus scare in mind while deciding the places we shouldn't visit. Even on the sets (in India), we are taking precautions... like people are wearing masks, using sanitisers and not shaking hands,' Bazmee told PTI.

An official from production house T-Series added that they are mindful of locations where they should not go for a shoot.

'At T-Series, we have few films on floors including 'Mumbai Saga' and 'Bhool Bhulayiaa 2'. There are two-three more films that will go on floors in a few months like 'Ek Villain 2'. We are definitely keeping in mind the places within India where not to shoot,' an official from T-series told PTI.

Many film celebrities went on social media to air their concerns over the disease, which has claimed more than 3,000 lives globally and infected over 90,000 people.

'Panga' filmmaker Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari said one must take precautions while celebrating Holi.

Actor Deepika Padukone called off her appearance at the ongoing Paris Fashion Week on Tuesday due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Parineeti Chopra took to Twitter and uploaded a picture wearing a breathing mask. 'Sad, but I guess this is the situation now. Stay safe guys. #Coronavirus #StaySafe,' she said.

Actor-author Soha Ali Khan had also shared a similar picture, writing that her mask 'helps protect against pollution and viruses'.

Actor Sunny Leone was one of the first celebrities who had shared a picture of her and husband wearing a mask, writing, 'Safe is the new COOL. Don’t be ignorant about what is happening around you or think the coronavirus can’t affect you! Be smart and be safe.” PTI KKP JUR BK MIN MIN