As you walk into the Osmania University’s College for Women, situated at Koti, the view could make you nostalgic. Movie buffs would be reminded of innumerable scenes from movies like Nayak and Dookudu that have been shot there and book lovers could associate it with William Dalrymple’s The Last Mughal, which has referred to it extensively.
The exteriors of the college are currently being used to shoot a court scene for the Pawan Kalyan-Venkatesh starrer Gopala Gopala. Confirming the same, producer Suresh Babu, informs us that after the Telugu film industry shifted to Hyderabad in 1985, this place has been a favourite with the film fraternity.
“Hyderabad has a lot of structures that have historical importance. But if you move away from the old city, Osmania University’s College for Women is by far the best location one could choose. It best suits a court exterior and is being used for the same in Gopala Gopala. This is the only building in Hyderabad that suits the scene,” says Suresh Babu.
He continues, “This particular place is used to show courts, colleges, homes of zamindars and just about anything to do with the Colonial Era. Earlier there used to be the Central Library or the Huda building which is now the American Consulate. But now, in the other parts of the city, we are just left with few options like the Koti Residency.”
Suresh Babu also adds that another reason why people choose this place is its low budget. “One doesn’t have to pay much to shoot here. They charge you between Rs 25,000 to Rs 50,000 depending on the number of days you want it for.”
However, the principal of Osmania University’s College for Women, B.T. Seetha, informs that the number of movies that are being shot here has reduced, as the building is under restoration.
“I guess most of the movies choose this location since we charge a nominal amount. We only allow them to shoot outside the college, and only on holidays, as it shouldn’t disturb the students. We have a few limitations, so the number of shoots have reduced. Whatever amount we charge them, is in turn used for the university. A part of it goes to the University Grants Commision and a part of it is stored as university funds,” says Seetha. Talking about the process she adds, “One needs to come to college and apply for permission. They need to fill a pro forma and make the payment through DD.”
Suresh Babu also urges, “A proper effort should be taken to restore the places of historical importance, so that they could sustain for a longer time.”