Munnabhai Sanjay Dutt arrives in Srinagar for shooting

Srinagar, Jan 8 (IANS) Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt, who hogged the media limelight for a different reason Thursday - entering politics, arrived in this scenic Jammu and Kashmir capital to resume shooting for Rahul Dholakia's "Lamhaa".

Hours after Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh announced in New Delhi that Sanjay was the party candidate for the Lok Sabha elections from Lucknow, the actor arrived here from Mumbai to resume shooting for "Lamhaa", which had got stalled last year following protests by many people.

"Kashmir is the paradise on earth. My father and mother shot films in Kashmir in the past. I have a special emotional attachment with the land and the people here," Sanjay said on his arrival here Thursday.

The week's shooting schedule will begin Friday and director Rahul Dholakia will shoot at two locations - the tourist resorts of Gulmarg and Pahalgam.

Shooting for "Lamhaa" was interrupted in the Valley last October following fears that the film would portray Kashmir in a bad light internationally.

First, fruit traders stopped the shooting at the fruit market and then students of a college in south Kashmir's Anantnag district took exception to some of the portions being shot inside the campus premises and the principal asked the film crew to withdraw.

Later Bipasha Basu, who is playing the female lead, left the valley after a mob surrounded the unit filming a scene with the actress. They wanted the film's shooting to be stopped.

"These are hiccups and we are determined to overcome these obstacle. Let people judge the film after it is released," Dholakia had told the media here at a press briefing last year, assuring the people that the movie doesn't project the people of the valley in bad light.

The cast and crew then moved to Manali to shoot the film. This decision hit the Jammu and Kashmir government hard and it tried to woo the film crew back to the state.

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