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LIFF postponed following Uttarakhand human tragedy

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NEW DELHI: The 2nd Ladakh International Film Festival (LIFF) scheduled to be held nextmonth has been postponed due to the massive human tragedy in Uttarakhand caused by floods and landslide.

LIFF Festival director Melwyn Chirayath told indiantelevision.com that the festival is now likely to be held in September.

He said: "We stand in solidarity with the victims and their family in their period of grief and mourning. It seems grossly inappropriate to go ahead with LIFF under such tragic circumstances."

He noted that while Leh, which is also a part of the Himalayan region, had been largely unaffected by the inclement weather, the Festival was being postponed as a precautionary measure.

"After consulting with the local government, we will announce the new dates of the festival. All other details of the festival remain the same," he added.

Earlier, it had been announced that a total of 115 films from fifteen countries will be screened at the Festival.

The films will be screened in five screens in Leh, according to Chirayath who said the festival will be inaugurated by Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah and the awards on the closing day will be given away by Information and Broadcasting minister Manish Tewari.

The jury for LIFF 2013 will be headed by well known actor/director Aparna Sen while members are Paul Smaczny (Emmy winner), Mathew Robbins (Palm d?Or), Vimukhti Jayasundara (Palm d?Or), Alireza Shahrokhi (Iran) & Teri McLuhan (Canada).

In addition, there will be a retrospective on lyricist-filmmaker Gulzaar by director/producer Vishal Bharadwaj who had got his first major break in the former?s ?Maachis?.

There is a section celebrating women through some of the finest women oriented films made in India.

A major highlight is the green carpet premiere at LIFF 2013 of Teri Mc Luhan?s documentary ?Frontier Gandhi?, on the forgotten freedom fighter, nationalist and peace advocate Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan. There will also be a special children?s section curated by Amole Gupte, chairperson of the Children?s Film Society, India, which will feature six children?s films.

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