Friday, August 10, 2012

As the River Flows premieres at Osian Cinefan

Abdul Gani

Guwahati: After being at the centre of debates and discussions, Ekhon Nedekha Nadir Xipare (Assamese version of the film As the River Flows) premiered at Siri Fort Auditorium in New Delhi during the ongoing Osian’s Cinefan Film Festival on Sunday evening.

Before the film was screened, Bidyut Kotoky, the director of the film went through some anxious moments. “Really can’t say if I was nervous. Yes, definitely it was an anxious moment. Anxious with the prospect of experiencing my film for the first time with you… the audience for whom it is meant,” Kotoky told Seven Sisters Post.

A scene from the film As the River Flows.
The film revolves around the story of a journalist named Abhijit Shandilya who is caught in a multi-layered world of intriguing happenings in the largest inhabited river island in the world, Majuli, in Assam. “I hope everybody loved ‘her’. I would be heartbroken if they don’t. But not shattered. I will try to make a better film next time which can win your heart and soul. But I do believe this is a film straight from the heart,” he added.

The film which features Sanjay Suri, Victor Banerjee, Bidita Bag, Raj Zutshi, Nakul Vaid and several others was in the news after some jury members of the National Film Awards rejected it from the best regional film award citing the reason that it ‘was not an Assamese film’. The censor certificate, however, clearly mentioned it as an Assamese film. Sanjay Suri and Victor Banerjee were also present during the screening.

The 59th National Film Awards 2011 is governed by the National Film Awards Regulations. The Clause 7.3 of the regulations makes it mandatory that every film seeking nomination should be certified by Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
To obtain the mandatory certification, the film Ekhon Nedekha Nadir Xipare was sent for certification by Central Board of Film Certification. Accordingly the Central Board of Film Certification certified Ekhon Nedekha Nadir Xipare to be an Assamese movie in the U/A category.

Meanwhile,, took up the issue seriously and filed a PIL before the Delhi High Court, although the same was dismissed, on filing of a report by the Directorate of Film Festivals to the effect that the film was not rejected on the ground of it not being an Assamese film but it was actually rejected on the basis of merit. But several questions remained unanswered.

The jury of the 59th National Film Award flouted guidelines issued by Directorate of Film Festivals. Clause 1.3 of the guidelines issued by the Directorate of Film Festivals reads as follows: “The jury members shall maintain strict confidentiality regarding the deliberations/ recommendations in respect of awards to various categories.
In case of any violation by jury members, he/ she would be debarred for life from becoming a jury member in National Film Awards/ Indian Panorama/ International Film Festival of India.” 

But so far nothing has been done even after two jury members breached the norms and spoke to media about the rejection. Besides, another Assamese film Local Kung Fu — a comic martial arts film directed by Kenny Deori Basumatary was also screened during the film festival on Saturday. The film was made with a budget of just Rs 95,000.
According to the director and writer Kenny Basumatary, Local Kung Fu is possibly the cheapest martial arts comedy ever made. Kenny Basumatary also stars in the movie. The people liked it so much that the film was screened again on Sunday morning. (Seven Sisters Post)


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