Thursday, June 3, 2010
Gir gets a bed to fit in Big B!
AHMEDABAD: Guess what was one of the biggest worries for the state tourism department which is to play host to Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan in the Asiatic lion’s den in Gir forest? Finding a bed his size!
Sources in the tourism department told TOI that one of the first concerns in the meetings held to discuss the schedule for the film star — who will camp in Gujarat for a week to shoot films to promote tourism — was the basic issue of a bed.
On Wednesday night, a specially designed bed that can be dismantled was moved into the official guest house in Gir forest, Sinh Sadan, whose largest bed in the VIP suite measured just 6’x 6’. And Bachchan is 6 ft two inches tall! “The new bed, made of pure teak and measuring 7 ft and six inches long and six ft wide, will be assembled inside the suite with brand new mattresses to match,” said sources in the state forest department.
This suite was last renovated when President Pratibha Patil visited here to see Asiatic lions. The bed has been made locally in Junagadh . Bachchan is being flown in a specially chartered plane on Friday to Ahmedabad and then to Bhuj where the first shoots will be held in sites like Mandvi, Dholavira and the Rann of Kutch.
On Monday he is expected to shoot in Gir where groups of lions have been readied for the esteemed visit.
Bachchan, who is brand ambassador for Gujarat , will shoot films to promote the state as a tourism destination under the theme ‘Khushboo Gujarat ki’, said official sources.
Tracker parties are already moving along the route to be followed by the film crew to ensure that there was enough presence of lions.
S e c re t a r y (tourism) Vipul Mittra will fly to Mumbai to escort the superstar to Ahmedabad. Bachchan is coming all alone with the crew and his programme has been kept top secret. Nobody will be allowed to accompany him on the weeklong tour.
The 67-year-old actor would fly to Junagadh district on May 31 and during his three-day stay in Junagadh, he will visit Somnath temple and Gir forest.