BR Shetty to open film city in Jammu and Kashmir

The UAE-based businessman has pledged to invest in India and has taken an interest in the country's film industry in recent years

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. June 30, 2019. Dr. B.R. Shetty is the founder of BRS Ventures, Finablr, and NMC Health. Leslie Pableo for The National FOR: For Podcast Section:
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Indian billionaire entrepreneur BR Shetty has announced plans to open a film city in Jammu and Kashmir to boost his home country’s film industry.

The film city will cover 12 square kilometres and welcome “curious” visitors.

"[Jammu and Kashmir] is a very scenic place and I'm going to have a film city there so that people can come and shoot films there, and for tourism," BR Shetty, the founder of NMC Healthcare and financial technology start-up Finablr, told Arabian Business.

Mr Shetty, a long-term resident of Abu Dhabi, said he had already received land offers from Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the UAE last month when top businessmen, including Mr Shetty, pledged to invest in India.

Mr Shetty pledged $1 billion to Jammu and Kashmir and an additional $5 million to the New India Development Fund.

The visit came weeks after the Indian government revoked Article 370 of the constitution that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir. It made it possible for non-permanent residents to purchase property in Jammu and Kashmir. As a result, Pakistan said it would take the dispute over Kashmir to the International Court of Justice.

Mr Shetty has taken an interest in India's film industry over the past few years. In 2017, the entrepreneur announced his plans to invest INR1,000 crores in a film called The Mahabharata.