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Madhu Mantena rushes back home

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Mercifully, it was just a false alarm. But, for a while, it was touch-and-go for producer Madhu Mantena in London with director Abbas Tyrewala for the pre-production of 1-800 Love when he contracted the common cold.

"Unfortunately, given the current swine flu scenario, the common cold is not considered common any more. For a while, I continued to function normally. But then, the cold grew into headaches and a fever," shudders Madhu. That's when Madhu pressed the panic button.

"In the current scenario, any man sneezing and wheezing on the street is considered potentially deadly. It's a suspicious world out there. And if you are brown-skinned sneezer on Oxford Street, you're in serious trouble. At the moment, a bearded guy with gun is considered potentially less serious than an ethnic guy with a cold."

Cutting short his pre-production and leaving Abbas to attend to the nitty-gritty, Madhu rushed back on Sunday to Mumbai in a panic, only to be quarantined at the Mumbai airport briefly.

"Fortunately, mine is just an ordinary flu, nothing swinish about it," says Mantena.

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