Two days after Tamil Nadu became the first state to remove the 50 per cent cap on occupancy in theatres, the Ministry of Home Affairs on Thursday intervened and directed the state government to revoke its decision.
In its notification, the Ministry stated that the government's approval to 100 per cent occupancy in cinemas, theatres and multiplexes "amounts to dilution of MHA order" issued on December 28.
The Guidelines for Surveillance, Containment and Caution released by the Centre directed that theatres outside containment zones are allowed up to 50 per cent occupancy. This directive was to stay in force till January 31.
In a Government Order (GO) passed on Monday, the Tamil Nadu Government permitted the theatres and multiplexes to run with 100 per cent occupancy, with Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) followed.
The order was passed after actor 'Thalapathy' Vijay had met Chief Minister E Palaniswami last week. Sources said that the actor had also requested the Chief Minister to permit 100 per cent occupancy in theatres.