Gorkhatimes

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Guwahati Festival to highlight Terrorism

Posted by Ramesh Khati on November 16, 2009

By Nava Thakuria

The insurgency stricken Northeast India has slowly woken up to the ill affects of insurgency turned terrorism and it has lately inspired a cinemagoers association to organise a festival on the theme of anti-terrorism. With an aim to highlight different perspectives of terrorism in Assam and other parts of the region, the Gauhati Cine Club has decided to go for a film festival in December exclusively on the burning issue.

The week long show titled Guwahati Film Festival 2009 will be inaugurated on December 10 next. The screening of the festival, to be held at Rabindra Bhaban and Lakhiram Baruah Sadan, is supposed to include nearly 50 award wining and critically acclaimed feature and short films from India and abroad with the prescribed theme.

Northeast India, surrounded by Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet (China), Burma and Bangladesh, gives shelter to over 20 active armed outfits, which are fighting against the Central government for many decades. With demands ranging from sovereignty to self-rule, the insurgent groups have almost waged a war against New Delhi that almost crippled the economy of the alienated region. The prolonged armed struggle has already snatched away thousands of lives from both the state and non-stateactors in the region that is home to around 50 million population.

Slowly but steadily, the conscious citizens of the region have come out to the streets against the inhuman and unruly activities of the insurgent outfits. Defying the diktats of the militants, the electorates of the region have been participating in the elections, conducted by the Election Commission of India, with huge turn-outs.
Moreover, the number of citizens participating in the Independence Day and Republic Day (of India) are growing every year, even though the armed groups continued their threats against such celebrations in the
region. There are instances, when the conscious citizens have expressed their angers publicly against the militant leaders, who had been masterminding the terror activities to keep the region burning.

Speaking to the writer, the secretary of Gauhati Cine Club, Kanak Chandra Kalita expressed optimism that the coming festival will receive significant response from the film lovers of Assam. Talking about the theme of anti-terrorism, Kalita asserted that it was everyone’s duty to stand against terrorism.

“We expect a world of peace, prosperity and wisdom. And the terrorism has no place there. That is why we have planned the theme for the next Guwahati festival to be anti-terrorism. It will be a small contribution from our end to understand and resolve the issue of terrorism for the sake of humanity,” Kalita added.

The four-decade old organisation, Gauhati Cine Club has been organising regular screening of films of national and international repute in the city. Established (under the leadership of Dr Bhupen Hazarika) in 1965, with an aim to create awareness about cinema as a serious art form and also encourage debate and discourses about the
cinema in the society, the cine club publishes an annual cine journal named ‘Chitra Chinta’. Till date, the cine club has published some exceptional books on the legendary film personalities like the Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, pioneer of Assamese Cinema Rupkonwar Jyotiprasad Agarwala, award wining Manipuri film director Aribam Shyam Sharma etc.

More over, it organises the film appreciation courses for the interested filmgoers and also interactive sessions with distinguished film personalities. The annual memorial lecture on Rupkonwar Jyotiprasad Agarwala, the doyen of Assamese cinema, who dared to make the first Assamese movie ‘Joymati’ in 1935, amidst all challenge and difficulties, is also a praiseworthy activity of the cine club.

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