Jamshedpur : Curtains came down on G T Cinema ( formerly Goushala Talkies) in Jugsalai on Friday as it joined the list of closed theatres. The talkies, which was reeling under financial losses, demonetisation finally led to the closure of the seven decade old single-screen theatre.
The cinema hall, which was established in late 1940’s was one of the oldest theatre in the city. It was facing financial losses in the absence of adequate viewers after demonetisation.
“It is really sad moment for us but we have no choice. The demonetisation has hit us hard. The sale of tickets dropped by about 85 per cent after the government announced demonetisation. During the last 5-6 weeks the turnout of viewers was a meagre 10 to 15 per cent. This compelled us to close down the theatre,” said Amit Agarwal, a co-parter of the theatre.
Several single screen theatres in the steel city had to be closed in the past including Basant Talkies in Sakchi, Star Talkies in Burmamines, Karim Talkies in Sakchi and Shyam Talkies in Parsudih.
The Agarwal’s are running the theatre for the last 45 years. Prior to this the theatre was run by another local businessman. Spread in over 21,000 square feet area, the Agarwal’s had taken the land on lease for running the theatre from Tatanagar Gaushala. Agarwal said that the 10 year lease got expired last year ( 2015) and it was not renewed.
” As per our information, Tatanagar Goushala has ambitious plans of coming up with a shopping mall. We have been assured a space on that mall which might be converted into a multiplex in future,” said the co-partner of the theatre.
A senior staff of the theatre requesting anonymity said that because of dwindling viewers post-demonetisation they had reduced the prices of tickets from Rs 60 to Rs 50 for box ( or balcony). For rear seats the prices of tickets was reduced from Rs 40 to Rs 30.
The last show on a dubbed film Best Friend was screened on Thursday night ( 8 pm to 10 pm). The show witnessed a handful of viewers.
Popularly known as Goushala Talkies, the single-screen theatre was renamed as G T Cinema after it underwent a complete makeover in December, 2009. Over Rs 50 lakh was spent on renovation work. The cinema hall had installed Dolby sound and advanced UFO technology for better picture and sound quality.
Officials of Gaushala Talkies said that the pitiful condition of cinema halls in the city was also the prime reason that forced the audience to sit back at home and confine to the new medium of entertainment.