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Nitesh Kumar Sahoo

"Ja Simran ja... Jee le apni zindagi..." This statement during the scene from Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge when Amrish Puri persuaded Kajol (Simran) to run after the train to reach Shah Rukh Khan (Raj) went on to become one of the most iconic scenes in the Indian cine industry. 

Apart from that, the elevated emotions of the audience every time they watch when they come to the climax scene will remain unmatched.

Even the "Mere Saapnon Ki Rani" song from Aradhana featuring Sharmila Tagore sitting inside a train coach and Rajesh Khanna chasing the train has always enamoured the audience. 

So today we take you to enjoy some of those enthralling moments of Indian cinema created in association with the country's biggest public transporter.

As Railways are a part of day-to-day life, it also holds prominence in the movies. From Bollywood to Hollywood and all other regional film industries, several movies have come up with scenes that require trains, platforms, etc. 

Indian railways share a long association with the country's film sector. 

Talking about Railways, it has always lent whole-hearted support to promote the movie industry. 

Some of the iconic films in which trains play a prominent part include Sholay, The Burning Train, Coolie, The Train, DDLJ, Dil Se, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Gadar, Tere Naam, Baghban, Khakee, Veer-Zaara, Gunday, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Chennai Express, MS Dhoni: The Untold Story, Dil Bechara, Radhe Shyam and many more. 

Who paid the highest price?

Of course, the Indian Railways earns from the Indian cine industry for allowing to shoot films. 

However, in 2021-22 financial year, the Central Railways earned Rs 2.48 crore by offering various premises and rail coaches for film shooting, which is pegged to be the highest ever.

Interestingly, out of Rs. 2.48 crore, the Railways earned Rs. 1.27 crore from just one film. The film is none other than Kiran Rao’s next! It can be said that nearly half of the revenue earned by the railway zone came from just one film.

Amit Kulkarni, of Ekdant Films, who served as the line producer of this film, exclusively told Bollywood Hungama, “The film was extensively shot on railway premises. It took around 48-50 days for the unit to shoot the whole film out of which they shot for 24 days on railway properties.”

Kulkarni said, “We shot the film at Yeola railway station located in Nashik district, Maharashtra and around 100 kms away from Nashik City. A part of the film was also shot at Kanhegaon railway station, in Ahmednagar district. 

Both these stations are virgin locations. No film has been ever shot at these places. Usually, filmmakers prefer shooting at Apta station, where several films have been filmed over the years (like Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, Rang De Basanti, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Khakee, etc)."

How do filmmakers hire trains for film shooting?

Picturesque locations along with the best, safe and economical shooting venues for big and small screen productions have helped the railways to earn good revenue. To boost up the filmmakers to opt for featuring trains and platforms in the movies, the railways have streamlined the entire process by creating an integrated single-window mechanism for permissions for film shootings on its premises.

Earlier filmmakers had to seek the permission of 17 zonal chief public relations officers and the Railway Board by submitting applications. However, now with the setting up of the Film Facilitation Office, the applications can be submitted through a web portal. This portal is also used for permissions for shooting feature films and TV/web shows. 

Producers need to apply offline for the shooting of music videos, documentaries and commercials.

The producer concerned has to submit the proposal to the CPRO office. Shooting is allowed after ensuring all necessary clearances such as security clearance, operational feasibility report, availability of rolling stock, required documents and depositing of the safety deposit and the required license fee.

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